How to Use Colour Theory in Photography to create Visually Appealing Pictures

Colours instantly attract your attention, right? While photographing a scene, look for colour combinations that you think will make your picture stand out. You can use the colour theory aka colour schemes, one of the important composition techniques, to create striking images.

We have explained how to use Rule of Thirds, Centred Composition, Leading Lines, Fill the Frame, Pattern and Texture Composition, Rule of Odds in our earlier blogs, now let’s proceed to Colour Theory!

The Colour Wheel

colour wheel

In the above colour wheel, the colours that you see opposite to each other are called Complementary Colours. For instance, pink & green, yellow & blue are complementary colours. On the other hand, colours that you see next to each other on the wheel are known as Analogous Colours. Blue & green, red & orange are Analogous Colours. Third in the Colour Theory is Monochrome wherein you capture a scene in black & white or in varying tones of a single colour.

Now let’s see an example of each of the Colour Theory.

Complementary Colours

Complementary Colours

The above picture of an illuminated building looks appealing. It is because of the presence of complementary colours; yellow, blue and purple.

Colour theory

Here’s another example of complementary colours. The use of pink & green in the frame instantly grabs your attention, isn’t it?

Analogous Colours

Analogous colors

Above is a picture of a (blue) bird amidst greenery. It makes use of analogous colours which is blue & green.


Monochrome colours

Use of black & white colour in the above photograph evokes a different emotion. A coloured photograph wouldn’t have created that effect.

We bring you ‘Jo & His Camera’ Comic Strips wherein a Magical Camera gives DSLR photography tutorials to Jo.

Click on the below Image to see the Comic wherein the Camera explains Jo, the concept of Colour Theory with the help of practical examples.

Colour theory

So, next time – when you are looking to create captivating photographs, think of the Colour Theory!