- The senses, namely sight, feel, smell and taste are greatly affected by the world around us. Years of evolution has guaranteed that our very beings strongly prefer some things over others; and our senses being in tune with the things around us, it is not unusual that changes in the surroundings such as colour can change the way we perceive the world.
The basics of Colour Psychology
The basis of Colour Psychology is that colour itself can influence our response to the outer world. It can alter our perception of sight, taste, touch and smell and influence our response to much bigger things such as placebo tablets and marketing schemes.
Our response to a certain colour is based on factors such as the environment and our body.
Colours can be split into two categories based on how warm or cool they are. Colours such as red, orange and yellow are termed as warm colours. Whereas blue, green and purple are termed as cool colours. The cooler colours tend to have a soothing effect on our eyes whereas the warmer colours are more stimulating.
The colour of our food, our walls, the plants in our house, the sky, our clothes and the world around us can all affect our mood and behavior. It has the potential to decide whether we feel disgusted,happy,sad or even depressed.While it does not directly cause the mood,it certainly influences us.
This effect of colour has been exploited in marketing and advertising to make products more attractive and appealing to consumers.
It is to be noted that the meaning of colour also depends on the context in which we observe it. Therefore ,if we associate our favorite colour( if it isn’t yellow) with happiness the colour yellow may or may not communicate the same feeling of happiness as it does to other people.
Some colours and their meanings
There are basic principles of colour psychology such as each colour being associated to a specific meaning.
Red is associated with excitement and anger. Blue with peace and tranquillity. White with purity. Purple with royalty and wealth and Yellow with warmth and happiness.
The meaning of the colour could also be derived on the basis of your culture or upbringing.Colours such a red which communicate anger in western cultures are considered auspicious in eastern cultures.
We begin analyzing the meaning of colours when we see them.Toddlers tend to prefer colours such as pink and blue as assigned to them by society . But as we grow older,the colours tend to become more varying are less concrete.
Colour psychology in our daily lives
Colour psychology is heavily used in the marketing of products.
Since colour can influence the choice of consumers, associating products with certain colours can improve the sales of a product. A lot of the judgement to buy a product is based on the colour itself. We associate certain colours with certain scents, flavors and tastes. For example, changing the name of a purple coloured candy to lime can greatly diminish its appeal.In a similar manner, a yellow coloured candy labelled banana will taste the best among all the other coloured candy in the packet of the exact same flavour.
Colours such as red and yellow are associated with hunger. Thus, you will observe that many fast-food chains use these colours to make their food more appealing to the consumer.
Colour combinations such as red and white are considered very attractive in terms of visibility. Having great contrast without being jarring to the eye, this combination is often used for signboards.