Color Graphics


An Overview of Color Graphics

Color plays a large part in how we see and interpret our world. It is also an important element of design that is used to establish ideas, invoke feelings and accentuate areas of interest.

Color terminology in graphics

Color is an important element of visual communication. We live in a world where colors are used in everyday life – not only as helpful symbolism, but as a way to affect and accentuate our moods and visual interest. Since it is such an integral part of graphic design, designers need the most up-to-date and fundamental information about color graphics.

CupcakesReasons to use colors in graphics

  • For quick recognition of objects
  • To easily grasp the meaning
  • To emphasize brand identity
  • To portray symbolism (psychologically and culturally)
  • To invoke moods and expressions

Inspirational and effective secrets to using colors in graphics

Modern research has proven that some common colors can often be the most effective way to inspire people psychologically due to their subconscious meanings.

  • Set your preferences by keeping in mind the client’s favorite color. Some people will love a particular set of colors, while others will dislike them.
  • Reflect over the target market or industry. Certain themes go well with certain companies. If you have seen different advertisements for food or beverage items on TV, you may have noticed that red is a commonly used color, as it makes people hungry. High-tech companies, insurance companies and other such services mostly favor blue, which is calming.
  • Emotions, expressions, and signals, whether they are friendly, energetic, quiet, or confident, can be invoked by cleverly mixing colors. It also can change the mood of your media text. Should you make poor color choices, your work may be ignored.
  • Be trendy. In other words, your work should be inspired by certain cultural surroundings, which change constantly.
  • Consider color psychology. It’s true that there are associations that we tend to make with certain colors. Green, for example, often refers to youth, freshness and friendship. Pink and light purple tend to reflect femininity. Yellow is the strongest psychologically because it helps to lift spirit and self-esteem. Blue is peaceful, logical and trustworthy. Orange focuses our minds on physical comforts – food,warmth, and shelter. Black shows sophistication and glamour. White projects purity, nature and support.

Understanding the Color Wheel and its Properties

The color wheel shows the relationship between different colors. It allows us to see which colors are complimentary and which contrast with each other. Any of the two primaries (red, blue, green) are mixed to create secondary and any of the primary and secondary are mixed to create tertiary colors.



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We should also be familiar with the three properties of color:

  • Hue: Refers to where that color exists on the gamut.
  • Saturation: How rich a color is.
  • Value: How bright or dark that color is, typically as a percentage between 0 and 100 percent. 0 percent means complete black and 100 percent is the brightest.


Graphic design is not only about making attractive layouts and designs, but also connecting to the people who are the targets of advertisements. Color is the first thing people notice and the last thing they remember, so it is important to use it well.
Lawton Reprographic Centers takes great pride in our color print solutions, so contact us for your color printing needs.

Additional References for Color Graphics: