Art, Fashion, Health and Wellness, Inspiration, Spa Evidence, Syncretism, Uncategorized

Fun with Color


If you’ve ever been to a casino did you notice that they use alot of red, green and purple in their decorations? You aren’t alone! Color can have profound mood altering properties when correctly employed and casinos have a vested interest in making sure you spend plenty of money. Psychological use of color has a long and storied history even if it’s considered junk science by the establishment. Research has demonstrated in many cases that the mood-altering effects of color may only be temporary. It has also been demonstrated that exposing student to red prior to an exam can have negative effects. Most psychologists view color therapy with skepticism and point out that the supposed effects of color have been exaggerated. Colors also have different meanings in different cultures which adds to the complexity of doing color research. When compiling the new directory of Spa evidence therapies by Spafinder, color as therapy was excluded but is still a hot new Spa trend to watch for in 2012.

With this in mind, I was trolling Pintrest when I found this great color chart from Colorscope. It’s a DIY assessment of your personality based on your favorite colors. I had just come from a sporting goods shop in my town that does appliqued sweatshirts for most of the Greeks at my university.My preference was to go with a papaya color or black but I couldn’t find a matching fabric that suited me.  I ended up choosing a Curry and Peacock color combo with a little brown thrown in. I was pleasantly surprised about what it said about me, given that I couldn’t find what I wanted to begin with. The color chart is below and the link will take you to the definitions of what each color choice means.

colorscope_0109

 I took a trip to England many years ago and came across a company called Aura Soma who produce all sorts of color combinations in water and oil for therapeutic spiritual use. They have an entire system that works with a bevy of syncretized Angels and Archangels to discover your spiritual path. You can do a free online Aura Soma reading here. Some people may be put off by the syncretized spiritual use of Angels in Aura Soma products but I have found that the products work wonderfully well as described without recourse to the system of meaning Aura Soma attributes to them. My first color choice was royal blue and emerald-green and I love it!

Another way to use color in personality is to take a color personality quiz, which is different from the spiritual focus of Aura Soma products described above. A good website for exploring this option can be found here and another for a global color survey is found here.

Ultimately, looking at color as a means of determining personality is like a Rorschach ink blot test. It’s highly subjective. Despite this, there are plenty of historical antecedents for the applications of color tests. Ancient Persians thought the study of the aura was a mark of mental acuity and intellectual development. The Saints of Christian legend also have historical associations with a nimbus of color emanating from their bodies. Art itself verifies the existence of color science and while science doesn’t admit any spiritual associations with color it does acknowledge the existence of the human aura.

The primary colors are Red, Yellow and Blue. In color science, white is blending of all these and black is their absence. All other hues are shades and mixtures.

Red: The physical plane. It indicates friendship,love, health and vigor.

Yellow: The intellectual plane of being. Golden yellow is the highest form of intellect.

Blue: The spiritual and religious plane of being. Dark blue flows from people with great religious feeling while light blue indicates devotion to noble ideas.

Orange: Unifies body and mind. It represents wisdom and justice.

Green: A combination of mind and spirit and signifies a lover of nature. Characteristics are sympathy, altruism and charity. Emerald green signifies versatility and charity, while grayish green signifies jealousy and deceit.

Purple: The union of body and spirit. A symbol of the sublime and of the ideal. It also indicates a love of ceremony.

Pink: Being a tint of red, pink also affects us physically, but it soothes, rather than stimulates. (Interestingly, red is the only colour that has an entirely separate name for its tints. Tints of blue, green, yellow, etc. are simply called light blue, light green etc.) Pink is a powerful colour, psychologically. It is nurturing and physically soothing.

These color meanings are for auras and not for the personality. There is a difference! As an example, look at the color associations for black in the color sense personality chart link above and then consider that when reading auras, black indicates the negation of all being as well as hatred and malice. Black is the color of authority and power, stability and strength.  It is also the color associated with intelligence (doctorate in black robe; black horn rimmed glasses, etc.)  Black is all colours, totally absorbed. The psychological implications of that are considerable. It creates protective barriers, as it absorbs all the energy coming towards you, and it shrouds the personality. Black is essentially an absence of light, since no wavelengths are reflected and it can, therefore be menacing; many people are afraid of the dark. Positively, it communicates absolute clarity, with no fine nuances. It communicates sophistication and uncompromising excellence and it works particularly well with white. Black creates a perception of weight and seriousness.

These tools for exploring both the psychological and spiritual meanings of color are lots of fun and I hope you enjoy exploring your own unique color combinations. There are so many ways to play with color that I couldn’t cover them all in one blog post! If you are a fashion hound, a makeup guru or old enough to remember the Color Me Beautiful book and it’s system of wearing color based on your seasonal type, you’ll know that I didn’t cover all the angles from which something can be said about applications of color to make us look and feel our best. However, I do hope that these tools will aid you in your own explorations of color and it’s many uses in the modern age.

References:

Audrey Kargere, Color and personality, 1949, 1979 reprint http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=fvKG9l5xGV8C&oi=fnd&pg=PA1&dq=color+and+personality&ots=xlb5sdFlBK&sig=1936EcjPSFSLj2FfPklXAER3Q10#v=onepage&q=color%20and%20personality&f=false

http://psychology.about.com/od/sensationandperception/a/colorpsych.htm

http://www.colour-affects.co.uk/psychological-properties-of-colours

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