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Transcript of Color
To explain why color matters, how we can can perceive color through our eyes and the camera, its functions, how color can provoke certain emotions, and the manipulations of color perception in film.
How We Perceive Color
basic physiological process
eye focuses on light-sensitive cells of retina (cones & rods)
cones and rods send signal to neurons (nerves) that process & code them
retinal stimulus & mental operating system influence perception of surrounding colors, color juxtaposition, and constancy.
Color Harmony and
Color Harmony= hues with a balanced energy that go well together
Used in the informational function of color
Main function is clarity
Based off the color wheel
Symbolism and Functions
Perceptions and Emotions
Color can be used to manipulate our emotions and can enhance aspects of a scene, without us realizing so
Table of Contents
How We Perceive Color
Mixing Colors and Harmony
Perceptions and Emotions (Desaturation)
Manipulation of Color Perception in Film
Why color Matters
By: Rachel, Nicole, Jake, CandAce, and Laura
Color In Film
Why do you think color matters?
" The desaturation theory asserts that one way of reducing the blunt and brazen impact of high -energy colors in a quiet, introspective scene is to lessen their saturation, give them a monochrome tint, or omit color all together."
...meaning that if you have a soft scene and want to evoke a soft perception, then the color should be desaturated, giving the scene a low-energy feel.
Saturated vs Desaturated
make events too external
look at instead of into the scene
make us realized we're watching
lets us know we aren't too emotionally involved
can become emotionally involved in the scene
event can become more transparent
audience can apply psychological closure (filling in missing elements of scene
can intensify the mood of a scene or event
color can be used to create low and high-energy scenes, depending on the coolness or warmness of the colors used
Low vs High-Energy
serve as a unifying element for high-energy colors
usually backgrounds, walls
colors include: white, beige, soft colors, etc
usually accessories to the scene
i.e upholstery, plants, rugs, etc.
colors include: orange, blue, yellow, green
Zettl, Herbert. "Structuring Color: Function and Composition." Sight, Sound, Motion; Applied Media Aesthetics. 7th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Pub., 1973. 73-84. Print.
need more light than rods
short waves: blue, medium length: green, long waves: red end of spectrum
colors are mixtures of various wavelengths, all wavelengths visible in bright light
high resolution image of colored object
help us see in lack of adequate light
we can't see much color in dim light, but can see objects around us
slightly fuzzier images than with cones
color against set against dark background looks lighter than real brightness value
hard time seeing object when foreground is same color as background
reduce effectiveness of communication
similarity of brightness & hue between foreground and background leads to poor pictures
subtle differences contribute to film look
color vibrations: undesirable color distortion
highly contrasting patterns
moiré effect: scanning competes with light/dark contrast of pattern
Brightness & Color Constancy
brightness/lightness constancy: stabilization of situation
color constancy: perceive certain color regardless of variations
high end cameras can differentiate
With the balance of high and low energy...
...you have "more control over the total effect irrespective of the various camera points of view
Created by Sir Isaac Newton in 1666
"circular diagram of colors"
Numerous variations designed by scientists and artists
3 categories: Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary colors
Red, Green, and Blue
Mix with colored light by overlapping color gels
Create Magenta, Cyan, Yellow, and White
Magenta, Cyan, and Yellow
Filter out all colors except color shown
Create Red, Green, Blue, and Black
Red- anger, passion,rage, desire,speed, strength, heat, love,danger, excitement.
Yellow- wisdom, relaxation, joy, happiness, optimism, idealism, hope, sunshine, illness, hazard.
Pink- love, innocence, soft, delicate, happy, content, romantic, feminine, playfulness, charming.
Blue- loyalty, tranquility, calm,stability, harmont, trust, cleanliness,sky, water.
Black- power, sexuality, sophistication, evil, sadness, depth, fear, mystery, anonymity, remorse, anger.
White- Protection, love, purity, simplicity, peace, birth, winter, snow, cold, cinical, sterile.
Green- healing, soothing, nature, environment, good luck, renewal,
proud, self awareness, youth,
jealousy, fertility, envy.
Purple- Erotic, royalty, nobility, spirituality, intimacy, sensitive.
Orange- humor, energy, balance, warmth, enthusiasm.
Adding excitement and drama
Expressing the essential quality
of an event
Colors add emotion to scenes
is used where a scene will be tinted a certain color.
A commercial for a hearty hamburger may be tinted a warm color and one for a energy drink would be tinted a cool refreshing color.
Colors excite us and dramatically intensify events,
from the flashing of police car lights in a high speed chase to the colors of team uniforms or
balloons, or the deep blue ocean, color sets the
mood for a scene.
Some scenes you expect to see certain colors in
and those colors set the essential quality of an event.
A hospital would be white and sterile, it wouldn't be likely for there to be rainbow walls.
A person in a dramatic scene with a fast, powerful car would probably be driving a red or black car, not a pink one.
There are certain colors that we associate with things and use to access an event.
Colors cause an emotional reaction to the viewer. These reactions can be so strong that color is not only used for symbolism but medicinal and religious purposes
A Divide In Culture
There is a difference in meaning regarding Eastern culture and Western culture
Red: Excitement, energy, passion, love, desire, speed, strength, power
In Western society
Yellow: Joy, happiness, optimism, idealism, imagination, hope, sunshine
Blue: Peace, tranquility, cold, calm, stability, harmony, unity, trust, truth, confidence
Green: Nature, environment, healthy, good luck, renewal, youth, spring, generosity
Orange: Energy, balance, enthusiasm, warmth, vibrant
In Eastern society
Gold: Strength, wealth, Evil or sadness- Just like in the western world- black
Green: Eternity, family, harmony, health, peace, posterity
White: Children, helpful people, marriage, mourning, peace, purity, travel
Red: Happiness and good fortune
Website Title: Film Directing Tips Film Making Articles and Online Resource
Article Title: 12 Colors and Their Meanings
Colors in Medicine
The color blue has a calming effect on many people and lowers respiration and blood pressure
Some therapists use green to sooth and relax people who suffer from anxiety or depression
Yellow helps energize people and relieves depression
The Navajo Nation considers four colors to be important: Turquoise, white, yellow, and black. These colors represent four sacred mountains
Buddhist monks wear orange (specifically the color saffron) robes primarily due to tradition
Religion pt. 2
Green is the traditional color of Islam. The Islamic flag is green. Green is also mentioned in the Quran as the color of garments, cushions and carpets in paradise
In Hinduism, saffron is their most sacred color. Saffron represents fire that burns our impurities
In Christianity, the color red symbolizes the blood of Jesus Christ and of sacrifice. White represents the body of Christ
Heaven is described as having a lot of gold in buildings and streets. White and silver are used in services during Christmas and Easter