People Innovation Excellence

Where does color came from?

Colours is the characteristic of human visual perception described through color categories, with names such as red, blue, yellow, green, orange, or purple. This perception of color derives from the stimulation of cone cells in the human eye by electromagnetic radiation in the spectrum of light. Colours also play a very important role in our lives, whether we realize it or not. They have the ability to affect our emotions and moods in a way that few other things can. How does a yellow room make your feel ? Does the blue color calm and relax you ? Designers have already for a long time understood how color can affect moods and emotions in a big way. Color is a very powerful tool for communicating and can be used to indicate an action, affect the mood and cause reactions in people’s mind. Some colors can actually raise your blood pressure, increase metabolism and have even been known to cause eye strain, if you look at them long enough. And here is some of the history of the color we know and where they originally came from

Victoria Finlay said in his book that the history of art is inseparable from the history of color. And what a fascinating story they tell together [1]

Wassily Kandinsky said the starting point is the study of colour and how it effect on men [2]

As mentioned earlier how color origin from and where they got their name from, here are some of the example of explanation where color got their inspiration and what their actual meaning

Based on previous research mentioned above, we can classify colors according to its shades

Red

Red is the color of fire and blood, so it is associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, Found in iron-rich soil and first employed as an artistic material in prehistoric cave paintings, red ochre is one of the oldest pigments still in use. Centuries later, during the 16th and 17th centuries, the most popular red pigment came from a cochineal insect, a creature that could only be found on prickly-pear cacti in Mexico. These white bugs produced a potent red dye. As explains Victoria Finlay in A Brilliant History of Color in Art. Raphael, Rembrandt, and Rubens all used cochineal as a glaze, layering the pigment atop other reds to increase their intensity. A non-toxic source for red pigment, the cochineal bug is still used to color lipsticks and blush today.desire, and love.

Red is a very emotionally intense color. It enhances human metabolism, increases respiration rate, and raises blood pressure. It has very high visibility, which is why stop signs, stoplights, and fire equipment are usually painted red. In heraldry, red is used to indicate courage. It is a color found in many national flags.

Red brings text and images to the foreground. Use it as an accent color to stimulate people to make quick decisions. Red is widely used to indicate danger (high voltage signs, traffic lights). This color is also commonly associated with energy, so you can use it when promoting energy drinks, games, cars, items related to sports and high physical activity.

Light Red represent joy, sexuality, passion, sensitive, and love  Pink represent romance, love and friendship  Dark red represent rage, anger, leadership, willpower, and courage  Brown represent stability, and masculine Reddish brown represent harvest and fall

Orange

Orange combines the energy of red and the happiness of yellow. It is associated with joy, sunshine, and the tropics. Orange represents enthusiasm, fascination, happiness, creativity, determination, attraction, success, encouragement, and stimulation.

To the human eye, orange is a very hot color, so it gives the sensation of heat. Nevertheless, orange is not as aggressive as red. Orange increases oxygen supply to the brain, produces an invigorating effect, and stimulates mental activity. It is highly accepted among young people. As a citrus color, orange is associated with healthy food and stimulates appetite. Orange is the color of fall and harvest. In heraldry, orange is symbolic of strength and endurance.

Orange has very high visibility, so you can use it to catch attention and highlight the most important elements of your design. Orange is very effective for promoting food products and toys.

Dark Orange represent mean, and distrust  Red Orange represent sexual passion, pleasure, aggression, and desire Gold represent the feeling of prestige, wisdom and wealth

Yellow

Yellow is the color of sunshine. It’s associated with joy, happiness, intellect, and energy. Few artists in history have been known for their use of yellow, though Joseph Mallord William Turner and Vincent van Gogh are the most notable exceptions.

Yellow produces a warming effect, arouses cheerfulness, stimulates mental activity, and generates muscle energy. Yellow is often associated with food. Bright, pure yellow is an attention getter, which is the reason taxicabs are painted this color. When overused, yellow may have a disturbing effect; it is known that babies cry more in yellow rooms. Yellow is seen before other colors when placed against black; this combination is often used to issue a warning. In heraldry, yellow indicates honor and loyalty. Later the meaning of yellow was connected with cowardice.

Use yellow to evoke pleasant, cheerful feelings. You can choose yellow to promote children’s products and items related to leisure. Yellow is very effective for attracting attention, so use it to highlight the most important elements of your design. Men usually perceive yellow as a very lighthearted, ‘childish’ color, so it is not recommended to use yellow when selling prestigious, expensive products to men – nobody will buy a yellow business suit or a yellow Mercedes. Yellow is an unstable and spontaneous color, so avoid using yellow if you want to suggest stability and

safety. Light yellow tends to disappear into white, so it usually needs a dark color to highlight it. Shades of yellow are visually unappealing because they loose cheerfulness and become dingy.

Dull Yellow represent caution, decay, and sickness Light Yellow represent intellect, freshness and joy

Green

Green is the color of nature. It symbolizes growth, harmony, freshness, and fertility. Green has strong emotional correspondence with safety. Dark green is also commonly associated with money.

While the color green evokes nature and renewal, its pigments have been some of the most poisonous in history

Green has great healing power. It is the most restful color for the human eye; it can improve vision. Green suggests stability and endurance. Sometimes green denotes lack of experience; for example, a ‘greenhorn’ is a novice. In heraldry, green indicates growth and hope. Green, as opposed to red, means safety; it is the color of free passage in road traffic.

Use green to indicate safety when advertising drugs and medical products. Green is directly related to nature, so you can use it to promote ‘green’ products. Dull, darker green is commonly associated with money, the financial world, banking, and Wall Street.

Dark green represent ambition, and jealous Yellow green represent sickness, and jealousy Aqua represent protection and emotional healing  Olive green represent traditional color of peace

Blue

Blue is the color of the sky and sea. It is often associated with depth and stability. It symbolizes trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, intelligence, faith, truth, and heaven. Ever since the Medieval era, painters have depicted the Virgin Mary in a bright blue robe, choosing the color not for its religious symbolism, but rather for its hefty price tag. Mary’s iconic hue called ultramarine blue comes from lapis lazuli, a gemstone that for centuries could only be found in a single mountain range in Afghanistan. This precious material achieved global popularity, adorning Egyptian funerary portraits, Iranian Qur’ans, and later the headdress in Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring. For hundreds of years, the cost of lapis lazuli rivaled even the price of gold. In the 1950s, Yves Klein collaborated with a Parisian paint supplier to invent a synthetic version of ultramarine blue, and this color became the French artist’s signature. Explaining the appeal of this historic hue.

Blue is considered beneficial to the mind and body. It slows human metabolism and produces a calming effect. Blue is strongly associated with tranquility and calmness. In heraldry, blue is used to symbolize piety and sincerity.

You can use blue to promote products and services related to cleanliness (water purification filters, cleaning liquids, vodka), air and sky (airlines, airports, air conditioners), water and sea (sea voyages, mineral water). As opposed to emotionally warm colors like red, orange, and yellow; blue is linked to consciousness and intellect. Use blue to suggest precision when promoting hightech products.

Blue is a masculine color; according to studies, it is highly accepted among males. Dark blue is associated with depth, expertise, and stability; it is a preferred color for corporate America.

Avoid using blue when promoting food and cooking, because blue suppresses appetite. When used together with warm colors like yellow or red, blue can create high-impact, vibrant designs; for example, blue-yellow-red is a perfect color scheme for a superhero.

Light Blue represent health, healing, softness, and understanding Dark Blue represent knowledge, power, and seriousness

Purple Purple combines the stability of blue and the energy of red. Purple is associated with royalty. It symbolizes power, nobility, luxury, and ambition. It conveys wealth and extravagance. Purple is associated with wisdom, dignity, independence, creativity, mystery, and magic.

According to surveys, almost 75 percent of pre-adolescent children prefer purple to all other colors. Purple is a very rare color in nature; some people consider it to be artificial.

Light purple is a good choice for a feminine design. You can use bright purple when promoting children’s products.

Light purple represent romantic and nostalgic feeling Dark purple represent gloom and sad feeling

White

White is associated with light, goodness, innocence, purity, and virginity. It is considered to be the color of perfection. the color most missed by painters is likely Lead White. This hue could capture and reflect a gleam of light like no other, though its production was anything but glamorous. The 17th-century Dutch method for manufacturing the pigment involved layering cow and horse manure over lead and vinegar. After three months in a sealed room, these materials would combine to create flakes of pure white.

White means safety, purity, and cleanliness. As opposed to black, white usually has a positive connotation. White can represent a successful beginning. In heraldry, white depicts faith and purity.

In advertising, white is associated with coolness and cleanliness because it’s the color of snow. You can use white to suggest simplicity in high-tech products. White is an appropriate color for

charitable organizations; angels are usually imagined wearing white clothes. White is associated with hospitals, doctors, and sterility, so you can use white to suggest safety when promoting medical products. White is often associated with low weight, low-fat food, and dairy products.

Black

Black is associated with power, elegance, formality, death, evil, and mystery. The darkest pigment found in Old Masters paintings is aptly named “bone black,” and is produced by burning animal bones in an air-free chamber. While the Impressionists avoided black paint finding areas of darkness to be filled with color. American artists in the ’50s and ’60s returned to black with avengeance.

Black is a mysterious color associated with fear and the unknown. It usually has a negative connotation. Black denotes strength and authority; it is considered to be a very formal, elegant, and prestigious color. In heraldry, black is the symbol of grief.

Black gives the feeling of perspective and depth, but a black background diminishes readability. A black suit or dress can make you look thinner. When designing for a gallery of art or photography, you can use a black or gray background to make the other colors stand out. Black contrasts well with bright colors. Combined with red or orange – other very powerful colors – black gives a very aggressive color scheme.

By: Devin Edgar Sianturi NIM: 2001614442 

 

REFERENCE

  • Finlay, V. (2014). The Brilliant History of Colour in Art. Los Angeles: Getty Publication.
  • Gottesman, S. (2016, May 20). A Brief History of Colour in Art . Retrieved from Artsy.com: https://www.artsy.net/article/the-art-genome-project-a-brief-history-of-color-in-art
  • Kandinsky, W. (1911). Concerning the Spiritual in Art . Moscow: Tate.

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