Brand colours impact our lives in every way – from the visual aesthetic of a design, to how we interpret what that colour means and in turn, how we respond. For example, the red colour on a stop sign creates the feeling of danger and urgency, while the vibrant green on a recycling symbol connects us to the idea of nature and harmony.
The subliminal meanings of colour are ingrained within us all, and it is important to know whether your brand’s colour/s are creating the visual meaning and emotional impact you were hoping for. But how do you know what colour to choose?
Graphic design plays an important role in the success of all types of businesses, by combining creativity, technology, aesthetics and thought processes. Intelligent and attractive design is integral to building a brand and communicating the right message to the desired audience.
Some graphic designers specialise in certain aspects, be it web design, branding, video production or display graphics. Most designers will have spent many years honing their craft and employ highly evolved technology to perfect their art. When you’re looking to employ a graphic designer, you’ll need to choose the agency with the appropriate skill set for your project.
A primary colour with an intense emotional response, red creates a need for action! Ranging from passion and excitement to danger, the bold colour of red carries a number of both positive and negative responses including energy, caution, desire and danger.
Combining both yellow and red, orange is the colour of optimism and energy. As a vibrant colour, orange links with the ideas of youth, enthusiasm, creativity and warmth, but can also give a feeling of dominance and impatience.
It is no surprise that yellow is seen as the colour for happiness, joy and positivity. This bright and vibrant colour creates a sense of warmth, fun and clarity. As the first colour the eye will see, yellow is used within more serious surroundings to help create the behavioural response of caution.
Viewed as a calming colour, green connects us to the idea of nature and feelings of harmony, health and growth. The other common interpretation of green is linked to wealth, money and luck, so understanding what shade fits your brand is key. Mixing the primary colours of yellow and blue makes green a balanced colour, helping to create a sense of reliability.
With it’s strong links to nature creating a sense of calm and relaxation, it’s no surprise blue is one of the most popular colours. Blue helps to create feelings of trust, loyalty, security and communication. By contrast, blue is also commonly used to portray feelings of sadness and depression.
As a rich colour, purple creates an array of emotive responses. Used as a characteristic of royalty, luxury and divulgence, shades of purple are also associated with ideas of mystery, spirituality and imagination. Combining the primary colours of red and blue help to give purple both energy and calmness.
Creating immediate effects of power and sophistication, black is a bold classic colour that makes an impact. As a neutral and stable colour, black is used to portray everything from strength, power and authority, to dominance and distress.
The purest of colours, white creates the feeling of balance, simplicity, perfection and innocence. White is used as a symbol of purity, clarity and cleanliness, making it easy to see why it is used so commonly in design and everyday life. While this crisp colour helps to promote hope and reflection, the starkness of white can also create a cold effect and feelings of emptiness.
Take the colour peach for example, this will provide a different design and emotional response compared to a rust shade, even though both are within the orange spectrum. Femanine and masculine traits are also linked to colour shades as they become softer or more intense and in turn, affect emotional responses and perceptions.