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Color theory encompasses a multitude of definitions, concepts and design applications - enough to fill several encyclopedias. However, there are three basic categories of color theory that are logical and useful : The color wheel, color harmony, and the context of how colors are used. Color theories create a logical structure for color. For example, if we have an assortment of fruits and vegetables, we can organize them by color and place them on a circle that shows the colors in relation to each other. The Color Wheel
Why study color theory? If you are involved in the creation or design of visual documents, an understanding of color will help when incorporating it into your own designs. Choices regarding color often seem rather mystical, as many seem to base decisions on nothing other than "it looks right." Although often told I had an eye for color, the reason why some colors worked together while others did not always intrigued me and I found the study of color theory fascinating. While attending the University of Minnesota I enrolled in almost every course I could from different departments: graphic design, interior design, and fine arts. During my studies, I learned that there were 2 main reasons why scholars investigated color—the first involved the communication of colors; the other involved the application of color.
With colors you can set a mood, attract attention, or make a statement. You can use color to energize, or to cool down. By selecting the right color scheme, you can create an ambiance of elegance, warmth or tranquility, or you can convey an image of playful youthfulness. Color can be your most powerful design element if you learn to use it effectively.
What is color theory? Color Theory is a set of principles used to create harmonious color combinations. Color relationships can be visually represented with a color wheel — the color spectrum wrapped onto a circle.
by David Johnson Like death and taxes, there is no escaping color . It is ubiquitous. Yet what does it all mean? Why are people more relaxed in green rooms? Why do weightlifters do their best in blue gyms?
What colors have you chosen for your marketing materials? What were your reasons for making that particular choice? Was it because you liked those particular colors, or did you have a particular marketing message in mind?
Our personal and cultural associations affect our experience of color. Colors are seen as warm or cool mainly because of long-held (and often universal) associations. Yellow, orange and red are associated with the heat of sun and fire; blue, green and violet with the coolness of leaves, sea and the sky.
When designers at Berni Corp. changed the background hue on Barrelhead Sugar-Free Root Beer cans to beige from blue, people swore it tasted more like old–fashioned root beer served in frosty mugs. No matter that the beverage itself remained exactly the same. Similarly, consumers ascribe a sweeter taste to orange drinks the darker the orange shade of the can or bottle. It’s difficult to correlate color with product sales. But Berni claims that when it changed Canada Dry’s sugar–free ginger ale can to green and white from red, sales shot up more than 25 percent.
Colors, like features, follow the changes of the emotions. - Pablo Picasso Do you feel anxious in a yellow room? Does the color blue make you feel calm and relaxed? Artists and interior designers have long understood how color can dramatically affect moods, feelings and emotions. It is a powerful communication tool and can be used to signal action, influence mood, and cause physiological reactions. Certain colors can raise blood pressure, increase metabolism, or cause eyestrain.