Category Archives: Rainbow

Fun Facts About Familiar Colors

Color. It defines our reality, evokes emotion, can affect our choices, and makes a difference in the way we look. All of us are familiar with the primary colors, but this post reveals some little-known facts that may surprise you.

Red:

Red is usually associated with power and passion. It is vibrant, daring, and attracts attention. For instance, think about the responses drawn by red cars and crimson lipstick.

Fun facts about red:

  • Although it’s widely believed that red capes make bulls angry, the reality is that bulls are colorblind. In this instance, the red lining is meant to conceal any bloodstains.
  • Seeing a red object can make your heart beat faster.
  • In China, brides wear red wedding dresses for good luck.
  • There are approximately 23 different shades of red crayons.

Orange:

The artist Wassily Kandinsky once said, “Orange is red brought nearer to humanity by yellow.” It’s one of those colors people love or hate. Vibrant and engaging, it is the only color of the spectrum that gets its name from an object- in this case the orange fruit.

Fun facts about orange:

  • In France, the middle traffic light is orange.
  • In Hindu tradition, orange is an auspicious and sacred color.
  • Orange is both the name and emblematic color of the British royal family.
  • The ‘black boxes’ on aircraft are really bright orange so they can be located more easily.

Yellow:

German writer and statesman Johann von Goethe said in 1840, “With yellow the eye rejoices, the heart expands, the spirit is cheered and we immediately feel warmed.’ The same holds true today: yellow is associated with optimism and enlightenment.

Fun facts about yellow:

  • Although yellow is considered a peaceful color, people lose their tempers more frequently in yellow rooms.
  • Legal pads are yellow because it improves concentration ability.
  • 75% of the pencils sold in the U.S. are yellow.
  • A yellow flag indicates a medical quarantine.

Green:

Green is not just a color anymore; it is a symbol of environmentally friendly products, buildings, and lifestyles. Green has represented growth, regeneration, and fertility since the beginning of time.

Fun facts about green:

  • People waiting to appear on TV wait in ‘green rooms’ because the color can soothe a bad case of the nerves.
  • Hospital decor is usually green because it calms patients.
  • Seamstresses won’t use green thread before a fashion show, fearing it can cause bad luck.
  • Brides in the Middle Ages wore green to represent fertility.

Blue:

Blue is one of the most popular colors. It causes the human body to produce calming chemicals, which is why it’s often used in bedrooms. Blue is also gender-neutral, appealing to both men and women equally.

Fun facts about blue:

  • Fashion consultants recommend wearing blue to job interviews because it represents loyalty.
  • Weightlifters can lift heavier weights in blue-walled gyms.
  • Workers are more productive in blue rooms.
  • Blue plates make food appear less appealing: a note to dieters!

Indigo:

We have Isaac Newton to thank for adding indigo to the color spectrum. He wanted the number of colors to match the seven-tone musical scale of Rene Descartes, so indigo was chosen to bring the color spectrum count to seven.

Fun facts about blue:

  • Black light turns ripe bananas a bright indigo color.
  • During the Elizabethan era, only royalty, nobility, and members of the Council could legally wear indigo.
  • Indigo is often called ‘royal’ blue.
  • The Virgin Mary is frequently depicted wearing indigo clothing.

Purple:

Because it appears so rarely in nature and is expensive to create, purple has a powerful history that has evolved with the centuries. It is the most powerful wavelength of the rainbow and denotes wealth and sophistication.

Fun facts about purple:

  • The Romans used to extract an essence for making purple by boiling thousands of marine snails.
  • In some cultures, purple is the color of mourning.
  • Only two of the world’s flags contain purple.
  • In Italy, performers refuse to go on stage wearing purple.

Read more Segmation blog posts about art and color:

Colorful Jewelry Inspired by Classic Art

Red Artwork is Worth Fortunes

The Reason Why Barns Are Red

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There is more to Color than meets the Eye

There is more to Color than meets the EyeWhat is better than taking in a beautiful array of color? This can happen in a natural setting, where autumn leaves are turning crisp and ocean waves rush to make whitecaps. It can also occur in an art gallery, where wall hangings mesmerize art enthusiasts, encouraging them to stop and be still.

These are examples of times when people give color their full attention. In most instances, however, color is taken for granted. People go days and even weeks without taking in the vibrancy surrounding life. How can this be? Color is everywhere.

The Complexity of Color

One possible reason people let the miracle of color pass them by is because it is so complex. Sadly, some will never truly understand how involved and deliberate color is. On the other hand, many people cannot contain their fascination; these tend to be those who dedicate their lives to pursuing the intricacies of color. A woman who does this is Jude Stewart. She is the author of Roy G. Biv – An Exceedingly Surprising Book about Color. In this book, the designer explores how there is more to color than meets the eye.

Roy G. Biv

For some time, people have been trying to fit color into the box of human understanding. This may be the reason behind the pressure that was put on Issac Newton to claim there were seven colors in a rainbow – not six.

He decreed red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet as a rainbow’s colors. Taking the first letter of each color creates the acronym Roy G. Biv. Without indigo (the color that he rushed to fit in) this helpful memorization technique could not exist.

Color is Cultural and Universal

Color exists beyond human understanding and advances human understanding at the same time. This is why people groups use color to set themselves apart. Despite efforts to be distinct, color also brings the world together.

In Roy G. Biv, Stewart explains how the concept of color differs between cultures. Across the world, people attach various meanings to colors. For instance, in Japan green is called blue. But color also has a way of bringing the world together. One example of the universality of color is how speakers of different languages list colors in a similar sequence. The widely accepted order goes black, white, red, green, yellow, blue, brown.

Ultimately, color is an earthly phenomenon that may never be totally understood. But people like Jude Stewart are going to continue trying to make sense of it all. If for nothing else, than to encourage people to stop, be still, and take in the world around them.

Read more Segmation blog posts about Art and Color:

The Most Colorful Cities In The World

The World’s Favorite Color

Pursuing a Career in Art

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Plexiglass + Light = Awe Inspiring Art

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Think back to when you were a child, easily fascinated by the tiniest things. Maybe you remember the excitement of finding a rainbow on the wall and the joy of discovering the crystal figurine that seemed to magically create this kaleidoscope of color. Perhaps you even spent the afternoon moving that figurine around the house waiting to see where the rainbow would appear next.

Do you remember the first time you saw a rainbow through the hazy drizzle after a storm? Your first sunset on a beach? Can you recall that first stained glass window that caught your eye and captured your attention?

More importantly, can you call back that simple childlike joy; the pure awe of bearing witness to something so fantastical? It’s hard to do as adults when we are able to wrap our minds around the scientific reasons behind rainbows and light.

Currently on display at the De Pury Gallery in London is a unique style of artwork which calls to the surface that simple, childlike wonder. The image above is part of the “Fly to Baku” Contemporary Art Exhibition.

The effect is achieved by shining light through Plexiglass airplanes. The arrangement of these airplanes creates the image on the wall. If the mobile of hanging airplanes doesn’t stop you in your tracks, then the picture it creates is sure to amaze.

Light has an important relationship with color and with art. Painters go to great lengths to achieve a specific light or a hint of a shadow in their paintings. Those who make stained glass pieces consider how the glass will react to light shining behind it. Sculptures can’t escape light either and seem to constantly change as light rotates around them. Even interior decorators factor in the way light filters through a space when they choose colors and designs.

In the case of “Fly to Baku,” light harnessed in little Plexiglass airplanes is actually creating pieces of art. Take a moment to really look at the image above. You may just find yourself entranced by childlike awe.

Image courtesy of http://www.imgur.com/gallery/86upn

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Photography: Black and White or in Living Colors

Does anyone remember a time before color photographs?

When photography began to flourish in the early 1900s, the camera produced only black and white images. However, a desire stirred inside many people, like physicist James Clerk Maxwell, who wrote about the first technique used to color photographs in 1855. Through his work, other photography enthusiasts were able to develop the capacity to capture life in living colors.

Maxwell predicted that it was possible to capture the essence of a photograph—the arrangement of color—in a time when only black and white photographs were produced. He wrote about color vision; a study to advance the concept that color identified by both human brains and machines is based on the wavelengths of light that reflect, emit, or transmit color signals. Maxwell found that a wide range of colors could be created by mixing only three pure colors of light: red, green, and blue. This manipulation of color had to be done in proportional amounts to stimulate the three types of cells the same way “real” colors did. In his writing, Maxwell used black and white photography as an analogy for his findings.

Maxwell’s Analogy:

If three black and white photographs were taken of the same setting through red, green, and blue filters, then made into transparencies (also known as negatives or slides), one could project light through these filters and superimpose them into a single image on a screen. The result would be an image that reproduced all of the colors seen in the original setting, not just red, green, and blue.

At this time, Isaac Newton’s work advancing the fact that all color is influenced by light, was common knowledge. In a similar fashion, Maxwell insisted that eyes see color on the surface of a perceived shade, where millions of intermingled cone cells represent only three colors. Red and blue sit at opposite ends of the spectrum with green planted as a middle region. They signal sensitivities (red) and stimulation (blue) that eyes receive when light shines through particular colors. The process of taking a set of three monochrome “color separations,” was also known as the triple projection method. Maxwell’s analogy was first tested by Thomas Sutton in 1861. However, the experiment did not work and the desire for photographs to represent living colors encouraged other enthusiasts to develop the art of color photography, which picked up steam again in 1890.

Color photography has been around for a little over one hundred years, and look at how far it has come. Flawless colors and mass production of images show how color photography has influenced enthusiasts and much of the world. This, however, is made possible because of the records kept during photograph exposure, like the triple exposure method which was outlined in Maxwell’s analogy. At the end of the appropriate exposure time, analyzing the spectrum of colors into three channels of information, red, green and blue, helped form a method to imitate the way a human eye senses color. The recorded information has been used to reproduce and enhance the original colors by mixing together aspects of the red, green, and blue lights and removing or adding elements of white light.

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The Many Different Hues of Blue

The Many Different Hues of Blue.

The Many Different Hues of Blue

The Many Different Hues of Blue.

The Many Different Hues of Blue

The Many Different Hues of Blue.