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What Colors Make Brown? Know the Origin Of The Sepia Effect

What Colors Make Brown
When you do not have a particular shade in your paint palette, you need to create it by mixing two or more different hues. Here is a guide on what colors make brown.
Rimlee Bhuyan
Last Updated: Dec 10, 2017
Brown is a tertiary color, so you can get different shades of it by mixing all three primary colors―red, blue, and yellow―in different amounts.

There are three basic types of colors, viz., primary, secondary, and tertiary colors. The primary colors are red, green, and blue. Secondary colors are the ones we get when we mix two primary colors, while tertiary are the ones we get by mixing a primary and a secondary color. There are three secondary and six tertiary colors. The primary hues, i.e., red, blue, and yellow cannot be produced by mixing any other hues. When these are mixed with white, they produce a lighter tint; and when mixed with black, they produce a darker shade. To make a brown paint color, there are three different options. You can mix red and green in equal proportions to get this shade. If you want a more reddish hue, you can have a bit more of the red. Alternatively, mix equal amounts of red and yellow to get green. To this, add a bit of blue to get brown. Another way is to mix purple with yellow to get a very pale brown, almost tan, shade.
A Painter's Perspective
Whether you are an oil painter or prefer water colors, you will require in-depth knowledge of how to mix different colors to get a particular shade of your choice. When you mix all the colors, you will get a muddy dirty brown. This is a tertiary color, and the best way to make it is by mixing equal proportions of red and yellow, with just a hint of blue. To get the perfect shade of brown, it is a good idea to use a mixing palette. Squeeze out a bit of cadmium red and yellow in your mixing palette, and add just a bit of ultramarine blue. If the color is too strong or dark, add just a hint of white to tone it down. If it looks more like tan or skin color, add a bit of black to get a dark brown shade. If your brown turn to be too pale, you can make it warmer by adding red. If you want to know what colors mixed together make brown, then just mix a primary color with its complement. Hues that are exactly opposite to each other on the color wheel are called complements of each other. So, mixing orange and blue, purple and yellow, or green and red makes brown.
How to Make Brown Paint
Several different colors can be used to make brown. The first way is to mix some red with some orange paint, and then add a little bit of black bit by bit to arrive at the shade that you want. Another way is to start by adding equal quantities of blue and yellow to get a green hue. Now, add red paint into this mixture and you will get a brown shade. If you are wondering what two colors make brown, then the answer is green and red. But make sure that the green is not too bright, as you will end up with a very dull and muddy brown.
Now that you know how to create brown paint by mixing different colors, have fun mixing different colors and experiment to get the perfect shade you want.
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