Today Pink Heart Society editor Jeannie Watt talks about the effect of color.
While attending the RWA National Conference in New York City, I managed to slip a performance of the Broadway play Kinky Boots into my schedule. I loved the movie, which I saw about five years ago, and the play was just as wonderful. At one point in the play, the hero makes a pair of what he considers to be red boots for a potential client of his shoe factory. The client, Lola, a drag queen, is disgusted to find that the red boots she'd ordered are burgundy. "Burgundy," she proclaims, "is the color of hot water bottles. Red is the color of sex!"
Color and our perception of color is so important to our lives. Think about the clothing you gravitate to in trying situations. It's probably comfortable and it's probably in one of your favorite colors. I am not going to wear a beige shirt when I'm about to have a big meeting, because beige makes me look like a mushroom. All over. Head to toe. I wear red (but not for the same reason as Lola...usually), or green or blue.
Of course, marketers and scientists study the effect of color on the general population, hoping to use the information to create better environments for various activities. They've discovered that warm bright colors make people move through fast food places faster. Cool colors encourage people to linger and dine slowly. Warm-colored placebo pills have been reported to be more effective than cool-colored placebos. Sports teams dressed in black get more penalties than teams dressed in other colors and teams dressed in red react with greater speed.
One study that I found particularly interesting for writers is the University of British Columbia study that found that blue makes people more creative and red makes people pay closer attention to detail. So if you're writing, wear blue and have blue around your computer. If you're editing, wear red and have red around your computer.
In summary, here's a brief list of characteristics associated witih certain colors. Click on the color name for more information about the psychology of the color.
Red -- love, warmth, comfort, excitement, intensity, (sex). Men prefer candy apple red, women prefer bluish reds.
Blue-- calmness, serenity, sadness, aloofness, creativity. Favorite color of men.
Green--tranquility, luck, health, jealousy, compassion, optimism
Purple--royalty, wealthy, wisdom, spirituality, sensuality
Yellow--cheery, warmth, energy, frustration. Yellow is most fatiguing to the eye.
Pink--love and romance
Orange--excitement, enthusiasm, warmth, energy
What colors make you feel best? Around here, we like pink a lot.
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Also, check out her FREE online read To Win a Cowgirl , the prequel to To Tempt a Cowgirl.
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