Essays

Colors

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Yesterday in Carpenter Country, the short one changed the desktop background on her office computer. Since the beginning of summer, Azul, depicted by a sandy island sparsely covered in palm trees and floating on a rippling blue sea, drifted across the screen creating a cooling effect. But now a warmer picture was needed and Autumn, with its vibrant orangey reds, filled the bill.

It’s amazing how colors can make us feel warm or cool, peaceful or excited, happy or sad. And how over the years they’ve been incorporated into everyday life and now motivate us in different ways.

Studies show children like bright solid colors such as red. Older adults often prefer more soothing pastels. Men lean toward the cooler blues and greens, women favor warmer shades. Many industries use this research as a marketing tool.

As we all know, holidays have specific colors. Red and green for Christmas. Orange and black for Halloween. Yellow and purple for Easter. Red, white and blue for patriotic occasions in the US.

What may be news is that in a garden, blossoms with warm colors planted in front of their cool cousins can make a flower bed appear larger. For a narrower looking bed reverse the layout.

This world would be a pretty dull place without spring green, summer blue, fall red and winter white. Those colors, and combinations of them, let us enjoy the brilliant hue of a rainbow, a splashy fashion display in a department store window and an Autumn background on a computer screen.

All in one golden afternoon.

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