The Hue Circle – It’s Awesome Like the Color Wheel

The humble color wheel doesn’t get enough press these days. A lot of us as architects use it almost intuitively. Sometimes we need a little refresher course. I am most familiar with the Munsell system so I went ahead and scanned the first page from my booklet.

munsell hue value chroma chart
munsell hue value chroma chart

Hue – This is a quality of a color, such as Blue

Value – Is it a dark blue or a light Blue? Value distinguishes the two.

Chroma – How strong or intense is that Blue?

These three combined give us a color.

Now you may hear the terms tint and shade. These relate to value. A tint is a light color and a shade is a dark color. Think of a painter. He or she is going to mix with white paint for a tint and with black paint to get a shade. So tint and shade indicate a color that may contain some white or some black.

The Munsell system has ten basic families of hue. Half are major and half are minor. The major hues are: Red, Yellow, Green, Blue and Purple. The minor are: Yellow-Red, Green-Yellow, Blue-Green, Purple-Blue and Red-Purple. That’s right, it makes a circle, known as the hue-circle. It is very similar to the color wheel.

Munsell Hue
Munsell Hue


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2 thoughts on “The Hue Circle – It’s Awesome Like the Color Wheel”

  1. Tom green builder

    I’m never disappointed when I go to your website. It’s terrific and I always learn something new and helpful. My sister and brother-in-law live in castle rock. My brothers law is a 60 year old out of work chemical engineer who got canned by Procter and gamble. His name is tom burton and he has terrific experience in hr and chemical stuff if you could use a free lance hr guy. His phone number is xxx-xxx-xxx. My nephew Jared burton graduated four years ago from univ of Tennessee in civil engineering. I tried to get him to go meet your firm before he took a job but he got a job with a big development firm in Boston mass about a year ago. He is not wild about it and would like to get back to castle rock area. Sorry for tmi but I really think your firm is one of the smartest I have seen in years. Thanks for all your great work and your fearless ability to try new things. Thanks for the tip on the affordable accordion door I will use a few this year. Thanks tom green

  2. Dr. A.K. Roy Choudhury

    Dear Sir,
    Please note that I have written a book entitled “Principle of colour and appearance measurement” in two volumes which are being published by Woodhead Publishers, UK (presently taken over by Elsivier). The first volume is already printed. In the second volume I want to use a figure (Munsell Hue Circle) from your website.
    I will be grateful if you give necessary permission for incorporation of the figure in the proposed book. Your assistance will be duly acknowledged and referred. I am waiting for your early reply.

    Asim Kumar Roy Choudhury

    Professor and HOD (Textile Technology)
    Govt. College of Engg. and Textile Technology
    12, William Carey Road
    Serampore -712201 (W.B.)
    M: 919433023166

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