Like death and taxes, there is no escaping color. It is ubiquitous. Yet what does it all mean? Why are people more relaxed in green rooms? Why do weightlifters do their best in blue gyms?
It is a well-known fact that color influences mood and feeling in common experience, however, the field of color psychology is still not well understood. Research on the psychological aspects of color is difficult for the mere reason that human emotions are not very stable and the psychic make-up of human beings varies from person to person. Nevertheless, there are a number of general and universal reactions to color, which seem to be noted in most persons. According to fundamental psychology, Freudians relate hues back to bodily function, while Jungians tend towards a more liberal interpretation of hues, believing that the individual's response to color is too complex to allow a simple mode of interpretation. As a matter of fact, many contradictions and ambiguities arose during research, especially in research of psychological effects of color because some studies tend to be subjective in their point of view rather than more scientific. This is because emotional reactions are not easy to measure. However, there are some commonalities that can be found from the resources.
Infants as young as two months old prefer colorful objects to non-color. Young children are color-dominant and are more attracted by color than shape. As they mature, they will often become more form-dominant; however, creative people often remain color-dominant all their lives. Eye-tracking studies that record infants' attention spans indicate that, regardless of sex, red and blue are the most preferred colors. As we grow older, habituation or learning patterns, and doing what adults tell us is "appropriate," colors our thinking. Childhood memories are so involved with color that they are indelibly stamped in our psyches forever.
Our cultural backgrounds and traditions influence our learned response and reaction to color. For example, in many Middle Eastern countries, blue is viewed as a very protective color. Front doors are painted blue to ward off evil spirits. Anyone raised with a deeply rooted sense of that hue would feel very safe in a blue environment. It is interesting to note that color can have the same meaning cross-culturally. In some communities of the Southeast, front porch ceilings were painted blue to keep ghosts from entering and haunting the premises, while in the Southwest, many Native Americans paint their doors blue to keep the bad spirits away. Each culture has its own unique heritage of color symbolism and each of us is a product of our early environment.
Warm colors are referred to as high arousal hues. Red creates the highest arousal threshold. So, from nighties to sports cars, it is true that red literally can turn you on! Any design done in red takes on a red persona. The person buying the red sports car subliminally believes that he or...