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Colour

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Luciana Berger

on 14 November 2012

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Transcript of Colour

Color holds a powerful position among the elements of film structure. A kind of universal language, it appeals equally to the illiterate and the sophisticated, to the child and the adult. Its function on screen is both utilitarian and aesthetic. Lewis Jacobs, critic Human responses to colour are not purely visual responses; they are also psychological or even physiological. Colour attracts and holds our attention; our eyes are more quickly attracted by colour than by shape or form. Individual responses to colour vary, for colour is a purely human perception of a visual quality that is distinct from light and shade. Colour is the special quality of light reflected from a given surface. What is colour? Colour is greatly influenced by subjective factors in the brain. Colour is not only seen but is felt emotionally by each viewer. The word 'hue' is a synonym for colour. Value: the proportion of light and dark in a colour. It is a comparative concept.
Tint: anything lighter than the normal value.
Shade: anything darker than the normal value.

Saturation: a saturated colour is a hue so unadulterated and strong that it is as pure as it can be. A desaturated or muted colour is lowered in intensity.

Local colour vs Atmospheric colour. Terminology Effects of Colour on the Viewer By using bright or saturated colours on the object of greatest interest and placing that object against a contrasting background, the director can easily capture the viewer's eye. Colour Attracts Attention Some colours seem to advance towards the foreground (advancing colours) and others seem to recede into the background (receding colours) Colours Contribute to Three-Dimensionality Colours convey a sense of temperature. Advancing colours are warm and receding colours are cool. Colours Create and Impression or Feeling of Temperature Monochromatic harmony: variations in the value and intensity of one colour.
Complementary harmony: the use of colours directly opposite each other on the colour wheel.
Analogous harmony: the use of colours adjacent to one another on the colour wheel.
Triad harmony: the use of three colours equidistant from one another on the colour wheel. Colours Function Together in Different Ways Colour has been used most often to signal important changes. Colour as a Transitional Device Transition between two separate worlds.
Transition from present to past. Expressionism attempts to present the inner reality of a character through distortion or exaggeration of normal perception. Expressionistic Use of Colour An object in a film which stands for an idea, or that has a second level of meaning. The more a symbol is repeated, the greater its significance. Colour as Symbol Surrealism uses fantastic imagery in an attempt to portray the workings of the subconscious. Surrealistic images have an oddly dreamlike or unreal quality. Surrealistic Use of Colour Directors may employ colours associated with given characters for a kind of trademark effect. Leitmotifs in Colour Colour to Enhance Mood Transitions from monochromatic scenes in sepia and greys to colourful ones. Shadows prevail
Muted browns, greys and blues
Smoke and steam
Under-lighted scenes Comic Book Colour Bold, primary colours prevail Comic Strip Colour The actual nature of the colour can be mixed to achieve the same kinds of effects that artists achieve with subtle blendings of the colours on the palette. Painterly Effects in Colour Uses of Colour Ironic Use of Colour Black and white is an entirely separate medium with its own strenghts, idiosyncrasies, and the unique power to communicate.
Whereas a colour film can rely on the relationship of colours for effect, black and white must rely on tonal relationships and contrasts produced by controlling light and shade. It produces its strongest impact by emphasizing highlights and shadows.
Black and white is being used by advertisers to catch the viewer's attention. Colour Versus Black and White Colour effects go against the emotional tone of the film. Hero (2002)
Zhang Yimou Schindler's List (1993)
Steven Spielberg Snow White (1937)
David Hand et al. Fining Nemo (2003)
Andrew Stanton, Lee Unkrick How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)
Ron Howard The Lion King (1994)
Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff Superman in Technicolor (1941-1942)
Dan Gordon, Dave Fleisher, Seymour Kneitel Under the Tuscan Sun (2003)
Audrey Wells Saw (2004)
James Wan Alice in Wonderland (2010)
Tim Burton Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003)
Quentin Tarantino Requiem for a Dream (2000)
Darren Arronofsky Cries and Whispers (1972) Ingmar Bergman The Cell (2000)
Tarsem Singh Red Riding Hood (2011)
Catherine Hardwicke Precious (2009)
Lee Daniels Annie Hall (1977)
Woody Allen V for Vendetta (2005)
James McTeigue Dick Tracy (1990)
Warren Beatty Moulin Rouge (2001)
Baz Luhrmann Girl with a Pearl Earring (2003)
Peter Webber Celebrity (1998)
Woody Allen Sin City (2005)
Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez Colour films: romantic or humorous, such as musicals, fantasies, historical pageants, and comedies.

Black and white films: naturalistic, serious, somber stories stressing the harsh realities of life. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
Stanley Kubrick Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain (2001)
Jean-Pierre Jeunet Colours are traditionally associated with different attitudes, feelings and connotations: Colours and their Meanings Yellow:
exuberance, obsession, dare
innocence, caution, idealism Blue:
powerlessness, rationality, warmth
melancholy, cold, passivity Red :
power, lust and defiance
anxiety, anger, romanticism Orange:
warmth, naïvety, romanticism
exoticism, toxicity, nature Green:
health, ambivalence, vitality
poison, omen, corruption Purple:
asexuality, illusion, fantasy
mysticism, omen Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
Stanley Kubrick, Brian W. Cook About Schmidt (2002)
Alexander Payne Thelma & Louise (1991)
Ridley Scott Great Expectations (1998)
Alfonso Cuarón Romeo + Juliet (1996)
Baz Luhrmann Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon (2000)
Ang Lee
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