The Meaning of Colors

The Meaning of Colours

Color influences our life every day. We base opinions and reactions off of emotions that it evokes.  Some people even base their careers off of studying the effects that it has on different individuals or groups (Color Theory). There are some basics that can be applied to our everyday life and decisions, be it at home or in the office.

For example, I recently moved into a new house and had the joy (I use that term loosely) of painting all of the rooms again. One of the rooms I assumed, had been done up for a little girl and was the lovely color of Pepto Bismol pink. Every time I even walked by the room I associated it with nausea and looked away.  This had to change fast, so a little research was in order. I learned a few interesting facts about the meanings of colors and the effects they have on everyday people.

Red (Primary)
Associated with associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination as well as passion, desire, and love. Brings about a sense of action in people. Promotes quick decisions.

  • Light Red represents joy, sexuality, passion, sensitivity, and love.
  • Pink signifies romance, love, and friendship. It denotes feminine qualities and passiveness.
  • Dark Red is associated with vigor, willpower, rage, anger, leadership, courage, longing, malice, and wrath.
  • Brown suggests stability and denotes masculine qualities.
  • Reddish-Brown is associated with harvest and fall.

Yellow (Primary)
Associated with sunshine,  joy, happiness and energy. Creates a warming and cheerfulness feeling. Also promotes muscle energy.

  • Dull (dingy) Yellow represents caution, decay, sickness, and jealousy.
  • Light Yellow is associated with intellect, freshness, and joy.

Green (Secondary)
Associated with earth and nature. Promotes growth, harmony, fertility and new beginnings. Is the most restful color to the human eye and can improve vision.

  • Dark Green is associated with ambition, greed, and jealousy.
  • Yellow-Green can indicate sickness, cowardice, discord, and jealousy.
  • Aqua is associated with emotional healing and protection.
  • Olive Green is the traditional color of peace.

Blue (Primary)
Associated with depth and stability. Slows human metabolism and produces a calming effect. Can be associated with sadness.

  • Light Blue is associated with health, healing, tranquility, understanding, and softness.
  • Dark Blue represents knowledge, power, integrity, and seriousness.

Purple (Secondary)
Associated with royalty, wisdom, dignity, independence, creativity and mystery. The most common color pick for pre-adolescent children.

  • Light purple evokes romantic and nostalgic feelings.
  • Dark purple evokes gloom and sad feelings. It can cause frustration. Can also provoke feelings of luxury and wealth.

Black (Neutral)
Associated with power elegance, formality, evil, death and mystery. Depends greatly on what colors it is paired with. Also can produce a feeling of sophistication. Black tends to brighten other colors.

White (Neutral)
Associated with purity, cleanliness, virtue, simplicity, and innocence. Has a very positive connotation and generally represents all that is good and pure. Will also brighten other colors.

As you can see there is many different meanings and emotions that colors can convey. Thinking of the end game and what other colors it will be near will help to produce a good combination. In the case of the Pepto Bismol room I chose a olive green for one wall and a beige tone for the other three because it was a bedroom and I wanted to play off of the restfulness of the green. In cases such as your logo or office think about what your company represents or would like your customer to feel.



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