By Janelle Sullivan
Have you ever known anyone with color blindness? I have a relative who has this problem and I must admit I used to tease him when we were kids. I didn’t understand why he didn’t see colors the same way I did, I just thought he hadn’t learned his colors. Of course, I feel bad as an adult for the teasing, but now I understand more than I did back then. Although I do not suffer from color blindness, I realized that many of my typography projects had the potential to be viewed by people who do have this affliction. I had to find ways to be sure they could perceive my work as it was intended.
What is Color Blindness?
Color blind people do see colors; they do not usually see the world in shades of gray. Color blindness is the inability to distinguish certain colors, or the differences between colors. This is the result of a lack of color pigment in the cones of the retina of the eye. A person who is color blind may have trouble seeing red and green, or blue and purple. Depending on the severity of the color blindness, these colors may even look the same to a color blind individual. You do not get color blindness; you are born with it, and most likely inherited it. More men than woman are color blind and it is a fairly common occurrence – 1 in 12 for men and 1 in 20 for women. There is a very small group of people who suffer from red monochromacy or achromacy. This rare type of color blindness leads to seeing the world in gray and black because the cones in the retina do not work at all.
By Janelle Sullivan
There is a wide variety of Web tools available for use when you are planning the color palette for your next project. You may have a color scheme in your mind before you start, or you may not have a clue what direction you want to head in. Either way, I have found these web tools to be invaluable when I am trying out new color schemes or I am doing a job for someone with an unusual plan for a color scheme. I hope you find them to be helpful, too.
Color Blender is an easy-to-manipulate tool that can help you choose color schemes for almost any purpose. You might be creating a typography project, planting a flower garden, or painting your bedroom. Whatever you are planning, this tool allows you to select a color and automatically get a color palette of complementary and contrasting colors. (more…)
By Janelle Sullivan
I love color! I am captivated by the way colors interact in a garden, a painting, or even a rack of sweaters in a department store. It intrigues me when I look in my friend’s closet and see all of her clothes organized by color. But my closet, with its chaotic array of colors, makes me smile. My mom always says it is my artist’s soul that allows color to bring me such pleasure. She may be right but I think everyone reacts, in some way, to color. It has been proven to have an effect on both your behaviors and your emotions.
Color and Your Mood
When we talk about your mood, we are referring to the quality of your feelings at a specific time. How can color affect a person’s mood? Different colors can elicit very personal feelings in individuals. Often, these feelings come from past experiences, or the culture you were raised in. In our society white is worn for weddings, as a symbol of innocence and purity. In some Eastern cultures white is the color worn for mourning, therefore it is the color associated with grief. Cool colors, such as blues and greens, are considered calming. Warm shades, like red and orange, evoke feelings of warmth and comfort for some, but hostile, angry feelings in others. Scientists have not done large scale research on color and its effect on people, so there is not very much empirical evidence to prove the theory. What remains is a lot of anecdotal evidence on color and human mood and emotion. My favorite color is red! If I want to feel vibrant and in charge I will wear my favorite red sweater. It seems to boost my mood and my confidence at the same time. I guess that is my contribution to anecdotal evidence. (more…)