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Video:What Is Color Psychology?

with Jacob Taxis

Color psychology is a fairly recent field of study that deals with how seeing different colors affects the way we behave. Here's a video describing the basics of color psychology.See Transcript

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Transcript:What Is Color Psychology?

Hi, I'm Jacob Taxis for About.com. In this video, you will learn about the basic concepts behind color psychology.

History of Color Psychology

Color psychology is a relatively young field of study focused on the effects that color has on human behavior. The way people experience color is determined greatly by their own personal and cultural associations, many of which are universal. Though studies in color psychology have helped to reveal strong links between color and behavior, there is very little data explaining how such a relationship exists. One of the major pioneers in color psychology was the Swiss psychiatrist, Carl Jung, who was interested in the ways color could be employed in psychotherapy. Through his studies of color symbolism, Jung helped to solidify color psychology as a legitimate field of inquiry.

Basic Reactions Brought On By Colors

Studies have shown that, in general, warm colors like red, yellow, and orange bring about emotions of comfort and warmth in people. They also may evoke feelings of hostility and anger. Cool colors like green, blue, and violet, however, tend to evoke feelings of indifference, calmness, and even sadness. Lighter colors will, in general, bring about feelings of tranquility while intense, brilliant shades will evoke excitement in the viewer.

Uses of Color Psychology

Color psychology has been implemented in a variety of ways in the world today. Color psychology is employed most prominently in marketing, interior design, and chromotherapy, also known as color therapy. Chromotherapy is an unproven alternative approach to healing. The color red, in addition to its being an appetite stimulant, also inspires very quick reactions in people. Interestingly, researchers have found that exposing test-takers to the color red negatively impacts test performance. Other warm colors, like orange and yellow, are used to draw attention, as is the case when used in traffic signs and advertisements. Yellow is most demanding and fatiguing on the human eye, and in some cases evokes feelings of anger and frustration. Green, a cool color, has been shown to establish feelings of calmness. Green rooms help to relieve stress and promote relaxation.

Examples of Using Color Psychology

The color green has also been found to improve reading ability and comprehension. For example, placing a green transparent sheet over a page can noticeably increase reading speed and information intake. Research on the color blue has shown that it helps to increase productivity while lowering pulse and body temperature. Because blue can greatly decrease appetite, weight-loss plans will often suggest eating from blue plates. A very interesting example is the color pink. Pink can at first evoke feelings of calmness and serenity. However, exposure over time will often stimulate feelings of agitation.

Color psychology is a fascinating area of study with practical implications for everyday life. Even a limited grasp of the ideas behind color psychology can help anyone better understand how we interact with the world around us.Thank you for watching. For more, visit About.com.

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