Saturday, July 23, 2016

colors and emotions

Color is kind of a big topic. We associate colors with all sorts of things, and some of them are emotions. But some of that is learned, and some of it isn't. There has been some work in the scientific community about that kind of association (fascinating stuff, highly interesting to read about).

Some of that applies to color. Pink is for girls, blue is for boys -- is a construct. Yellow is for happy, purple for royalty, white for purity, blue for calmness -- some of it is associations, some of it is about availability, and some of it is just random.

The sun is yellow, it gives us life, that's a pretty good thing, so yeah, yellow is going to fall on the happy scale of things. Purple used to be very difficult to produce, so only the wealthiest could afford it. A calm sky is blue, a calm ocean is blue, so blue becomes connected with calmness.

But artists are playing with colors all the time -- in visual works, and in writing. Sometimes they use the colors as a shortcut. The bad guy wears the black hat, the good guy wears the white hat (in some cultures). Sometimes, they use those colors to trick the viewer into believing a character isn't evil, and later there is the reveal.

For my four little fics, as I decided on the tone of the story, one of the first questions I asked was, do I buck the color, or do I go with it? I will say, writing with the color association was so much easier than trying to write against it.

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