Cool Color Ideas That Will Leave You Tickled Pink
Posted by: Rob Quincy on Friday, July 22, 2011
Whether we’re red with anger, green with envy, or feeling a little blue, we often draw upon color to depict our moods and define our world. And if color permeates our everyday language, it's even more important to our visual communications.
As designers, we’re constantly experimenting with color combinations, searching for that unique visual spark. I’ve found a few rules of thumb to be true when it comes to the use of color:
- Don’t be afraid to use it! People respond to color, and the more daring you are, the more vibrant and exciting your visuals will become.
- When choosing a color scheme, it’s important to stand out from the crowd. If most of your competitors have chosen blue as their primary color, it would be wise to go in a different direction.
- Trouble choosing a palette? Break out the color wheel. Direct, split, triad and analogous schemes have been used for centuries, they really work, and they’ll help you think of combinations you’d never otherwise dream up.
- There are countless online color tools out there. Two of my favorites are: Aviary Color Wheel and Color Scheme Designer
- Just like musical notes, color combinations, tints and shades are endless, so get creative!
Color and the Mind
We’re regularly asked what a particular color might mean to a specific audience, and we draw heavily upon color theory in our NJ Web design, print and multimedia projects. Below are some basic color associations:
Red: Symbolic of heat, danger, power, passion, strength, blood, and war. It evokes feelings of creativity and assertiveness or even anger. It can stimulate people to make quick decisions and increase expectations.
Orange: Orange is the color of warmth, autumn, fire, creativity, innovation, and speed. Orange tends to be declassifying and has a broad appeal. It can serve as a neutral color if toned down.
Yellow: Another warm color that can remind us of a sunny day. Conversely, yellow also denotes caution, sickness, or jealousy. Another good neutral when not saturated.
Green: A strong color, signifying vitality, growth, energy, faith and money. Green is the color we most often associate with nature, giving it a calming effect and, currently, with being ecologically responsible.
Blue: Evokes feelings of trust and loyalty. Blue can create an innovative or technology-driven feel. Considered by experts to be therapeutic to the mind and body. Conversely, blue represent solitude or sadness.
Purple: The color of richness, power, honor, and sensitivity. In the ancient Grecco-Roman world, Tyrian purple dyes were only affordable to elites, so purple became associated with royalty. It is also a color of passion and love.
Brown: The color of family, it creates a feeling of security. It brings out our inquisitive nature and creates a neutral environment for open discussion. Brown communicates credibility, stability, and an “earthy” quality. Can embody physical pleasures like food, luxury, and relaxation.
White: A combination of all of the colors in the spectrum of light, white is symbolic of purity, chastity and cleanliness. It can signify a new beginning or awakening of spirit. White space can be used to lend greater impact to the content it surrounds.
Black: The absence of color in the light spectrum, nothingness. Associated with death, sadness, and otherworldly beings. A powerful and formal color, it can be intimidating to some. When used as a background color, black will make almost any other color stand out and appear vibrant. It can also project a particularly hip or trendy attitude.
So don’t be afraid to use lots of color in new ways – you’ll be tickled pink at the results!
Now, orange you glad you read this article?
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