In the important work of designing environments, color is a vital and defining catalyst and one that speaks to much more than one particular space. Before the internet and our modern 24-hour information cycle, some color theorists gauges the state of the economy and consumer confidence by watching which red tones were trending. A brighter blue-based red (more positive and upbeat) would emerge as the economic outlook looked good and consumers were confident. However, if people were worried and not inclined to spend as much, a brown-based, earthy red would become popular because it felt safer and, particularly in home design, people believed they could live with it for longer.
Using colors to create workspaces that inspire creativity, collaboration and productivity is a key business concern, but color plays a much wider role in achieving success. A company’s brand image will connect with its consumer when colors are selected that emotionally engage their market. “Products utilizing colors that speak to the consumer’s mood, personal and culture will increase sales,” notes Sandra Sampson, vice president of PR and communications and executive board member at Color Marketing Group.
According to Sampson, online user experiences also are influenced positively by the right colors. Emotional associations with colors known throughout the world. However, cultural and personal experiences create variations in color meanings or associations. When a designer selects colors for a brand’s message – for logos, stationery or digital media – the meaning of colors selected needs to achieve an emotional connection with the audience.
Designers, of course, know the significance of context in selecting the right color for interior spaces. Color preference varies with gender, age, culture, seasonal influences, educational development, religion, lifestyles, personality type and personal experiences of the client. “By observing the client and listening to their stories and likes and dislikes in color, material and finishes, a designer will be able to find the perfect color-emotion connection,” says Sampson.
Reprinted and adapted from: The Science of Design, issue - September/October 2018
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