LEAP!Tracy HolmesComment

Just as every pure Hue can be (en)lightened by the Force of White, so too can Hue be drawn to the Dark Side. Welcome to the Empire of SHADE . . .



As if the tags on my Colour Every Day posts didn't already look like the Guest List for an intergalactic droid party (Y5, D15, 3+7, KRMW, C3... BTC-3PO?), here I am referencing Star Wars. But really, what better place than deep dark space to take our 12 bright and colourful Colour Basics Hues, add a ration of Black, and shift them into SHADES. Darth, Darther, Darthest.



But enough about some galaxy far, far away. Here on Planet BTC, I think the Shades look lovely. There's something elegant about a richer Red, a regal Purple, a deeper-ocean Cyan, a closer-to-midnight Blue. The Hues do fine on their own, but who doesn't look good in Black? Here's the 'Before and After' when our 12 Colour Basics Hues are made into Shades:

See what I'm saying? Elegant. It's like the little kid colours are all grown up.

No matter what the ratio, or how the colour may appear, still colourful or disappearing into the darkness, a Hue plus Black is called a SHADE. And Black plus a Hue is also a Shade.

Here is a random sampling of Shades from Colour Every Day:


Black can really enhance a colour, give it presence. As long as it's not too much. Here are the BTC Corner Hues, with a little less than half Black:

Blue is already so dark, we barely see the shift, whereas even a little Black is a lot for a lightweight like Yellow.


We know from an earlier 'Leap!' that White, at 000, is the epitome of empty. It's not just nothing, it's nothing three times. Black, on the other hand, is triple full, at 5+5+5. And in Hints About Tints we learned that you can make a Tint not just by adding White, but by taking Hue away from itself. Can we make a Shade by adding what isn't there?

Take a look at the Colour Codes above. When we wanted to Tint the pure Hues, we took those Codes and dialed them down, 5s to 3s, and 3s to 1s. To go the other way, to make the Hues darker rather than lighter, we need to add to those Codes rather than take anything away. In the BTC Colour Code system, 5 is the max, so we can't bump the 5s up to 6s. But we can add to the 0s. Just as decreasing the digits takes us closer to White, increasing them shifts us into the Shade.

The higher the digits, the darker the Shade.


Find the darkest cards in the BTC deck: the Colour Codes with both-but-only 4s and 5s. Can you mix them up and still see their (rebel) base Hues? The Colour Cubes in the bottom corner won't help. With Code digits that high, with colour mass that dense, these darkest of darks are all in the Black deck. 

Just as Hue can fade away to nothing but White, Black can move in faster than a fleet of TIE Fighters to fill the void with a deeper void and obscure each Hue from view. They're all still there, but they're hidden in Black's dark shadow. Masked, cloaked, so powerful, not even the Force can find them... Perhaps a Rey of light will pilot in to save the day? 

"There's been an awakening. Have you felt it? The Dark Side, and the Light."

Coming soon, Part 3 of this trilogy: the Dark Side and the Light... at the same time.