How Color Psychology In Art Works: Part 1

January 10, 2018

Midsummer Morning is an oil painting by Alice Ann Dobbin

By Chelsea Reed

Colors are a powerful tool for artists, art therapists, and designers to communicate with. Some colors even affect our brainpower, appetite, and feelings! While colors are subject to different individual and cultural interpretations, researchers are making a few discoveries that reveal how certain colors generate similar responses for many people. We’ll learn what those discoveries are along with common color psychology folklore to see how colors can create fascinating results in art therapy.

Red: A Wonderful Motivator

Daybreak Explosion is an abstract acrylic painting by Doug Brannon Outer Banks artistRed is a wonderful color that kindles passion and other deep feelings. While energy, warmth, and life are concepts most cultures share with the color red, how they are interpreted can be different with each country. Red is the customary color for weddings in China and represents good luck. Red is very attractive in art therapy and motivates leadership skills. Red is also one the easiest colors to see and artists paint with it to convey warmth, courage, vitality, and a pioneering spirit.

Pink: The Sign of Hope and Love

Azalas and Silver is an oil painting by Karen ChamblinPink is red’s softer cousin that is peaceful and soothing. It is also a color that artists use to complement green in their paintings. Color psychology indicates pink as the symbol of love and hope.  It’s perfect for understanding and nurturing others in art therapy since it communicates empathy, sensitivity, and compassion. Pink has the therapeutic ability to calm and soothe individuals. It is the color often associated with romance.

Orange: Energy and Fun in One

Yellow Orange Rose is a colored pencil by Connie Cruise Outer Banks artistOrange mixes red’s passion with yellow’s cheeriness and is a popular color for its universal happiness. It is known to be a great color for motivation and cheering up patients in art therapy. It’s not as strong as red and is the most common color in food, so seeing orange might also make you hungry. Watch out, dieters!

Yellow: Stimulator of Happiness and Brainpower

Village in Tuscany is an oil painting by Karin Schaefers impressionisticWould you like to give your brain a boost? Consider decorating your office with yellow. This happy color is the most powerful wavelength in the light spectrum and is proven to stimulate mental activity. You might want to take a rest if you’ve been looking at it a long time. Color psychologists tell us it’s the first color babies see.

Gold: Touches of Luxury and Charm

Gold can mean many things in different cultures, but there are common threads. Gold has historically symbolized treasure, luxury, and charm in folklore, such as the story of King Midas. Confidence, friendliness, and success are other traits that gold communicates in art therapy. Highlights of gold are quite beautiful in fine art. Some artists even paint real gold into their pieces and display them in art galleries.

Isn’t the world of colors amazing? Stay tuned as we uncover more colors in our next blog! In the meantime, you can have an ‘art therapy’ session of your own with an instant view of our gallery online, or you can browse through our collection in person at Seaside Art Gallery.

Chelsea Reed is a freelance copywriter and blogger. She writes articles, blogs, online content, press releases, websites, and is published in North America





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