In the additive color process, red and green combine to make yellow. The three additive primaries are red, green and blue. In the subtractive color process, yellow is a primary color and cannot be created through mixing. The subtractive color primaries are cyan, magenta and yellow. The primary colors combine to form three secondary colors.
Light is an example of the additive color process. Computer monitors produce colors using this process. Red, green and blue light combine to form white light. The primary colors of light can be combined in various ratios to achieve any color. A prism can be used to split and recombine the colors of light. The secondary colors of the additive color process are cyan, magenta and yellow.
Paint is an example of the subtractive color process. Cyan, magenta and yellow mix to form black. Primary pigments can be mixed in different ratios to achieve any color. The secondary colors of the subtractive color process are red, green and blue. Ink jet printers use the three primary subtractive colors and black ink to produce images. It is more efficient for printers to have a separate black ink tank than to mix cyan, magenta and yellow directly on the page.