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Today, I thought it might be fun to talk about color.
Color is one of the essential elements in art and design. It has defined many moments in art history. Painter Paul Cezanne kicked off the Post-Impressionist art movement by reinventing how color is used in landscape paintings. Picasso had the rose period and the blue period, where he only used specific pigments. Artist Yves Klein invented his own shade of blue called IK Blue, and it definitely had a fashion moment in 2013(5).
If it hasn’t crossed your mind, different colors have different meanings. Look at Picasso. His rose period paintings utilized warm colors to produce warmth, whereas his blue period paintings used blue hues to evoke feelings of sadness and loss. Whether it’s a landing page, or product, or branding, or even social posts, choosing a color can be incredibly important for your brand.
img: left–Picasso’s blue period; right–Picasso’s rose period
img: one of Ives Klein’s painting using IK Blue
Some things you can do:
Look at what similar brands in your niche are doing. Research about what values colors are associated with. I made a simple chart below. You can create mood boards of things or values that either inspire or are associated with your brand. You can then sample colors from images in your mood boards.
Ta-da, You are done.
Once you found a color that resonates. It is important to test this color in various environments so there are no surprises. You want to see how this color performs on black and white backgrounds. If it is too bright or vibrant (saturated).
Don’t ignore this step, ever.
I have seen too many landing pages use colors that hurt the eyes or use a color that simply doesn’t work with text or a logo that is barely visible. Checking colors is simple, and it saves you time.
img: a simple chart I made of colors with their common associations.
Some additional suggestions:
For branding, don’t use a bunch of colors at once with the same importance. Have one primary color that people always associate your brand with is a good idea. (Twitch = purple. Home Depot = orange.)
If you have multiple colors, pick a primary color and no more than three secondary colors. Make up a system for your colors and how to use them, and stick to it.
I hope this was helpful! If you wish to know more, you can also learn about color systems on our blog.
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