Color Mixture

  • David L. MacAdam
Part of the Springer Series in Optical Sciences book series (SSOS, volume 27)


Anyone who works continually with colors acquires, in time, the ability to anticipate the result of mixing familiar colors. Knowledge acquired in this manner cannot be imparted to others and cannot be applied to new colors without an extended series of experiments with them. It is often possible to calculate the result of mixing colors from the characteristics of the components. When valid, this procedure yields quantitative results of high precision and does not require familiarity with the component colors. The principles upon which such calculations are based are discussed in this chapter.


Pigment Film Spectral Transmittance White Point Spectrum Locus Dominant Wavelength 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 23.
    Sections 4.4, 5 are the first of the “variations” mentioned in the subtitle of this book — new material that was not in the Handbook of Colorimetry. Further details are available in D. L. Mac Adam: Photometric relationships between complementary colors. J. Opt. Soc. Am. 28, 103–111 (1938).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 24.
    The effectiveness of various wavelengths in white mixtures with the most effective combinations of short and long wavelengths has been discussed by Ralph W. Pridmore: Complementary colors: composition and effectiveness in producing various whites. J. Opt. Soc. Am. 70, 248–249 (1980).ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • David L. MacAdam
    • 1
  1. 1.RochesterUSA

Personalised recommendations