The Effects of Colour on Mood

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Different colour moods
Choose your mood
Psychotherapists are, according to this article about colour, sceptical about using it to influence mood. And there is little scientific research to encourage them. However, colour has been very important to many cultures and, importantly, colours have different significance across cultures. So how is colour useful to us …?

In my opinion, colour choice is very personal – from a very young age children will have their ‘favourite’ colour. For some children it will change regularly but for others, like me, it stays the same. I was very drawn to red as a child and I can’t remember there being any red in our decor at home. Maybe it was this scarcity that made me think ‘Wow!’ when I saw it …? I still love red but now I am also very keen on a light aqua teal, metallics, fluorescent pink and coral. Nowadays, when I paint, if I am feeling very positive/energetic I might be more inclined to use hot colours like yellows, oranges, reds/pinks but if having a slower more thoughtful day the cooler blues, purples and greens might appeal. Then when I look at the colours the feeling is enhanced. I think this is a bit like choosing clothes or home decor – the colours you choose reflect your emotional state and then serve to reinforce them. Maybe there is more of a subtle conversation around colour than a direct cause and effect?

Certainly colour can set a tone, like in the image to the right. The bottom image might be more suitable for a young energetic environment and the top could be used in a more romantic setting. And colour is often used in films/illustrations/character design to tell a story. For example a warm colour pallet might be used for a maternal character or a neutral more muted pallet for a reserved character.

What colours are you drawn to? Have you bought something for your home/wardrobe recently – maybe you were swayed to buy by its colour? I would love to hear about your colour choices in the comments.

Hugs, Ceri xx

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