Colours! Review

Posted by Amy Solomon on May 15th, 2013
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

Colours! is an interesting, interactive color theory app that children and their adults will enjoy.

I honestly did not expect much from Colours! as teaching children how to mix primary colors to create secondary shades is not an uncommon topic, so I was pleasantly surprised how complex this app can become.

Colours! allows one to mix red, yellow, blue, white and black to form any color possible. A sponge is also included to use as an eraser - a nice touch.

In Learn, tap a color and drag to paint within a circle seen at the top of the page. Slowly the circle will take on the desired color. Note how when painting, the test tube left of the circle is seen being filled with color drops. Tap the test tube to see 36 drops of color as they represent the proportions of different colors when new colors are added to the circle as seen when a new color is chosen and painted into the circle.

I must say I have spent more time with this app than I expected. I enjoy watching the colors change and checking to see what color parts make up a new specific shade that can be saved to investigate later.

In Play mode, a new, sometimes sophisticated color is offered at the top of the circle, allowing players to match this shade by mixing colors together. This may be easy, such as mixing yellow and blue to make green, but it can also be quite hard, such as mixing different shades of navy blues with red hiding within - a color I would be stuck at if I had not played around in the earlier section and discovered this shade for myself.

In Yours, the colors created in the first section are kept secure in the palette-like area. Tap on a color to see the different parts needed to create this shade.

The look of this app is pleasing, with a paint-splattered background and realistic looking paint cans to choose from. The primary blue color looks a little light with its white base showing through to seem very “true” in terms of being a primary color, and I noted how the blue shade seemed to turn darker - closer to almost navy the more one painted this single shade, compared to the red and yellow shades which were bright and primary-looking from the start.

Another observation I have made is how the color may disappear against the white background although other color parts are still in play in the test tube. I do wonder if being able to choose one’s own background color would mediate this problem as well as add to the visual interest of these colors, as they may seem to change color next to another shade. Relatedly, do point out to children how the top color within the Play mode seems to change in comparison to the bottom color as it too changes with every new color added.

I would also love to work from the test tube side of the Learn area, seeing how the color changes when adding very exact measurements of colors would transform colors when flipped back to the painting mode.

Colours! allows adults and children to dive deeper into color theory more than I thought. Children can have fun just mixing away, but this app can be used in school and at home together with a color wheel to teach about blending colors in a way most infinite.

I remember when my son was young and was given paints for the first time. I really wanted to show him how to achieve green, orange and purple, but my paints were quite less than true, and even with equal proportions mixed, the perfect secondary colors were never achieved. Others may have less of this issue, but from my experience, I can see how this type of app can be quite valuable, as the paint used to create the never-ending shades one can blend here would be mostly wasted in real life - as well as quite a mess.

Colours! is an app worth checking out. Adults, including those with an art background, will enjoy this world of color without any cleanup, but I think it would be a nice inclusion if one had a blank page to paint on with the colors they had created and saved - just a thought for a future update.

iPhone Screenshots

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iPad Screenshots

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