Choosing the Right Color: What to Keep in Mind


Chihuly Sculpture

What is the right color choice? At first glance, this questions intimates that there are wrong colors. In the big picture, realize that there are no wrong colors; only the right colors for the right projects. Sometimes one color won’t work as well as another color choice.

For example, consider the color green. It is a beautiful color, and it symbolizes wonderful elements, including the following ones:

  • Life
  • Joy
  • Abundance
  • Hope
  • On-going youth
  • Health
  • Laughter
  • Love
  • Resurrection
  • Eternal spring

Green is truly a joyous color. But would you want to see the sky a nice brilliant green? Uh … probably not. It might even make you a little nauseous. Browns can be warm, luxurious, and rich, but not for the color of your water.

The Primary Colors

Easter eggs

In order to choose the right color for the right situation, it’s a good idea to understand colors and their relationship with one another. In pigmentation, the three primary colors are red, yellow, and blue. You may be familiar with the artist color palate; these are the colors that all earthly color tones/mixes/variations derive from. You may have learned in school that white is the absence of all color, while black is the culmination of all color.

In light, the primary colors are different. They are red, green, and blue. These primaries are additives, because you must add the colors together to create white. In the light spectrum, black is the absence of all color, while white is the culmination of all color—quite the opposite from earth pigments.

In the world of print, the primary colors differ even more. Printers use three basic colors:

  • Magenta (a shade of red);
  • Yellow;
  • Cyan (a shade of blue)

The Right Color for the Right Project

la punta rota

So, what are the right colors for your area of interest? If you are painting your home, the colors you choose are extremely important, as you will probably be living with those colors for quite a while. If you need a calm soothing atmosphere, then lots of red and black will probably not suit you.

If you are setting theatre lights for a flashy dance concert, then you want … flashy dance lights! Lots of color and vibrant choices set the tone for fun.

If you are designing a website, you want pleasant colors that reflect your message while, at the same time, keeping your readers interested.

For a website on finances, you might consider a color scheme that reflects trust and solidarity. Good choices could include green, grey, or a touch of black. A fitness site exuding stamina and well being might succeed with red, yellow, or black. If your web page is about renewal and spirituality, then take a look at mixtures of blue, purple, or white.

Trust Yourself

party in the sky

Of course, the best judge of color for your own projects is you, so trust yourself. Study up on the influence of color and have a little fun. If the color choices aren’t what you want, you can always change your mind!

Written by Kate

Our guests blog on a wide variety of topics including inspiration and photography!

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