Difference Between Primary And Secondary Colors
By Andrew Parker - January 11, 2022

Even if you have never read a single book on color theory, you have definitely heard about primary and secondary colors at some point in your life. Maybe it was your kindergarten teacher who explained to you what primary colors are or maybe your artsy friend mentioned them to you while explaining about their paintings. So what are primary colors and how are they different from secondary colors?

Table Summary

Primary ColorsSecondary Colors
Red, yellow, and blueGreen, orange, and purple
Cannot be created from other colorsCreated from primary colors

Getty Images / DigitalVision Vectors / bombuscreative


Primary colors are colorants or colored lights that can be mixed to create other colors. They cannot be created from other colors. The three primary colors are red, green and blue.

Secondary colors, on the other hand, are created by mixing two primary colors. These three colors are green, orange and purple.

Primary Colors VS Secondary Colors

While primary colors cannot be created by mixing other colors, secondary colors are created by mixing two primary colors. Primary colors are red, blue and yellow, and secondary colors are orange (red and yellow), green (blue and yellow) and purple (blue and red).