Saturday, August 23, 2008

Color meanings Pt. 1

Lately, I've been exploring colors and their meanings. The following is mostly a Western-based concepts and meanings on colors. I'll have to look into color meaning from other cultures later on.

Red is the color of fire and blood so it's used to convey everything from war, danger, and strength to passion, love, courage and vitality. In color therapy, it's also believed to increase brain wave activity, increase heart rate, respiratory and blood pressure and stimulate the sexual glands. Because of this, red is known to convey energy and might be useful in promoting energy drinks, games, sports and other high physical activity.

Related colors:
Light red represents joy, sensitivity, passion, sexuality and love.
Pink is associated with femininity and passiveness along with romance and friendship
Dark red signifies willpower, anger, courage, longing, malice and leadership.

Carlo Giovani
This CD package was made for a band named "Turbo Trio" by Carlo Giovani. The hard edges and red color gives this cd package a strong presence along with passion and energy. Using another color such as blue or green may not have had the same strong impact.

Maciej Rakowski

The off-centered design along with stark red color on the girl creates sex appeal as well as emphasis on the product that she is holding.

Amy V. Cooper
A beautiful piece by Amy Cooper. Sensuality, longing, even curiosity. One can't help but wonder what she's searching for and be attracted to that red.

Orange is said to combine the happiness of yellow with the energy of red. The tropics are often represented by this color, especially in photography and in advertising. The color is also known to stimulate appetite and the digestive tract and is said to provide and invigorated effect on people. Orange is considered a very "hot" color and therefore, is highly favored by younger people and is said to also stimulate mental activity. It also represents fall and harvest and be used in advertising to promote food products and toys.

Related colors:
Dark orange can mean deceit and distrust.
Red orange signify domination, aggression, pleasure and thirst for action.


Mario Sanchez Nevado
Instead of use for emphasis, orange was used as ambiance in this piece. There is a sense of energy, growth and happiness that makes it even more vivid.

Cris Ortega
This piece can go both ways in terms of use of red and orange. Red has definitely been used as an emphasis for temptation but the red orange of this piece has created yet another something else: a thirst for action. Both work well together to complete the piece.

Yellow is associated with happiness, joy, intellect and energy. But it also means honor, warmth, loyalty and cowardice. Though this color is cheerful, it is considered the color most fatiguing to the eye and can cause frustration and irritation. It is believed that people in yellow rooms will tend to lose their temper more often and babies tend to cry more in yellow rooms. Yellow tend to be associated with children and is considered very attention-grabbing compared to other colors. Many recommend to use yellow as a form of highlighting in design and not as a background color.

Related colors:
Deep or dull yellow represents decay, caution, sickness and jealousy.



The designer has made an eye-catching logo using yellow for emphasis. It also gives a feeling of freshness and a certain playfulness; a trait that could serve well for this logo advertising "creative" solution.

DGarden Collection
The yellow in this room gives a lighthearted, cheery feeling.

More colors later. :)


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