Examine The Value Of Colour In Everyday Life
Colour provides us with the ability to differentiate many things. The value of colour is so extensive. It ranges from the use of language to artists and designing. There are a variety of examples that require the existence of colour and without it, these things will just be boring. Television has moved from black and white to coloured. Without us realizing, black and white are also colours. They are just duller version of colours and are often not considered as colours. In my argument, I will be discussing about the various uses of colour in everyday life from the simplest objects to different specialized areas which require the use of colours.
Green monster of jealousy, red with anger, and feeling blue – these are emotions that are described in relation to colours. In these simple English phrases, colours are a symbol of feelings. Colours make these emotions more vivid and descriptive. It is one of the many steps taken to take language to a higher level of sophistication and beauty. Emotions will be much too simple if we were to just describe ourselves by a mere feeling. It does not provide enough exaggeration and amplification of the feeling. Being red with anger makes the feeling of fury more tragic and dramatic. With the use of colour, we are able to express ourselves better. This allows us to better appreciate words as we need not use bombastic words like poignant to describe our depression, since we are able to economize on words by using simple things like feeling blue that can capture the same emotion with colours.
Traffic lights require the use of colour too. Green means go and red means stop. It has become an international symbol so much so that words like “Walk” and “Don’t Walk” are just redundant for traffic lights. Simple things like these have created order and command in the world. It has become a regulation that every sane person abides by as it is to ensure our own safety. It is much too dangerous to cross a road without a traffic light nowadays. With speeding cars and oblivious jaywalkers, crossing is almost as dangerous as stepping into a river filled with crocodiles! Colours in traffic lights make it safer for pedestrians and motorists.
What is the one thing that we, Singaporeans, look at every morning during flag raising that is red and white? The Singapore flag, of course. Flags all over the world will be identical is if not for its colours. The American flag is famous for being red, blue and white and these colours are acknowledged as their national colours. It differentiates a country from the rest of the world. It provides uniqueness to the country allowing the citizens a sense of belonging to the country. This large-scale sense of belonging is derived from a mere existence of colour. The power of colour is not to be trifled with.
In the sector of visual and psychological therapies, colours are imperative. When psychologists aim at curing an anxiety-prone patient, they often paint their room blue. It is said to have a relaxing effect on normal human beings. There have been articles and advertisements that provide the public with information about myopia. There has been a rising number of people suffering from myopia especially amongst the youth. The health authorities are now taking measures to encourage people, who spend time in front of computers and papers all day long, to stare out into the greenery for about half an hour. Research has proven that the greenery is very good for the eyes to relax and adjust its focus back to distant objects since green is the colour that best appeals to the human eye. The carotene in carrots provides not only the prevention for eye complications but it also provides carrots its orange colour. Colours are important in providing us with the improvement in our vision and to prevent eye complications
Furthermore, hues are often used in eye tests to determine if one is colour-blind. Being colour-blind is seen as a problem because they see a different pattern from the normal human eye and are thus unable to decipher colour gradations sometimes objects. This is due to a problem with the retina or the nerves. Colour is so important that machines such as the Gnome Desktop have been created to help the colour blind lead normal lives. The Gnome Desktop functions as a colour filter to allow regular vision for the colour-blind. If colour was not that important, would the Gnome Desktop be invented? Colours are important in our everyday lives because the incapacity to distinguish colour is seen as a disability.
For artists, colours are everything to their lives. Their work of art is made up entirely of colours. These colours are their expression of their feelings and emotions. In the most basic art lessons, we learn that red tones are used to exude warmth whilst blue is meant to express gloom and grey, ambiguity. Just as songwriters convey their feelings in a song, we are able to tell the emotion of the artist at the time he is painting. Without colour, the canvas will be blank. Even black is considered a colour and a pattern can be formed using a black ink over a white canvas.
Besides artists, colours are essential in the world of fashion and design. Designers make a living from colours and patterns. We can have the same shirt of the exact same size and shape but the moment they are of different colours, they are deemed dissimilar. Just one component of the shirt can make so much distinction. In dressing, we are often told that black makes us look thin, white makes us look fat and different skin tones suit different coloured shirts. Colours play an important role in deciding the perfect colour for ourselves. Designers tend to produce as much in the most popular colour so that their products sell well. Colours are a crucial constituent in a fashion designer’s live because they earn their living from the existence of colours.
However, colours also make people see each other differently. People from different races are born with different skin colours. This was what initially led to the African Americans being termed “blacks” and the Caucasian being named “whites”. It was derived from their skin colour. In the recent American Presidential Campaign, Barack Obama stood out as a candidate because if he were to be president, he would be the first black president in America. He has used his difference to his advantage. But by constantly bringing up this point, Obama seems as though he aims to improve the lives of only the “blacks” when he should be seeking out for improvement in the lives of the whole country. On the other hand, minorities of nearly all societies are beginning to take up high positions, which in the past, only a preferred race could undertake. The importance of colour has been underplayed making the value of colour, as in ethnicity, has diminished.
Since the discrepancy of the “blacks” versus the “whites” are almost solved, the only colours that actually exist is that of the beautiful wonders created by different wavelengths of light, which are the colours that we see in a rainbow. The rainbow is the best representation of colour.