Sunday, September 22, 2013

COLOR month

In honor of fall, let's celebrate color!

This week, I am in the studio designing and painting. It feels really good. You know I am a painter before I am a sewing pattern and fabric designer, right? So, my love affair (since I was barely a teenager) has always been with color.

Color is a language I speak more fluently than English.

I was hoping you could post your color comments or you have a favorite palette? What are your go-to colors? Are there any colors you absolutely don't like and never use? Do you ever get stuck when combining colors?

I was mixing paint yesterday and it occurred to me that each color has bones, muscles, and skin. There are embedded layers to each part of a color. The knowledge of the layers of a color helps us appreciate what we see as the final skin. For example, just knowing if a color has cool or warm undertones helps us understand it and use it better.

Seeing through the IDEA we have of a color to the ACTUAL color is the place where we all need help. When I mix, say, a red, I have to get past the idea of "red", and move into the qualities of the specific red I am after. Red can mean candy apple and red can mean terracotta. Red can mean Maserati and red can mean traffic light. Red can mean the burgundy of a Burgundy. So we have to think very specifically about color to communicate exactly what we want to say. The more we can avoid color stereotypes, the more depth we can find in the actual colors we choose. When it comes to color, specificity is our friend.

Josef Albers–Homage to the Square (exploring chromatic interaction)

How much do you know about Josef Alber's influential color theory studies? Read about him here. He worked on studying and revealing color interactions and color context. He worked mainly with one question: How does a color change when it is touching another color?

Josef Albers color study. The small rectangles in the centers are the same color, but look totally different because of the surrounding color.
Look at the color theory in this picture! Each yoga outfit is totally changed by the color of each mat.