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Color Theory & Color Psychology

Jailyn Glass, marketing manager at Perfect Afternoon
Jailyn Glass

Color Theory & Psychology

Color is all around, no matter where we go. In this week’s episode, Jailyn and Morgan sit down with our Graphic Designer Lindsey to talk about all things color, including color theory & psychology. Before we get started with the heart of the topic, we, of course, have an icebreaker for Lindsey to start our color conversation.


  1. What is color? Name your favorite and why?
    Answer: Color is created by either a combination of pigment or light that affects the way individuals see life differently. There are different wavelengths, which influence individuals’ retinas to create color hues that range anywhere from red to purple, and anything in between. Lindsey’s favorite colors range – purple makes her feel warm and happy inside, while sage green makes everything good.
  2. Name the primary colors.
    Answer: Red, blue, and yellow. These colors are pigment colors that cannot be mixed or formed by any combination of other colors. Also, they are ever so prevalent in any logo, branding, and anywhere in life.
  3. Name the secondary colors.
    Answer: Green, orange, and purple. These hues are formed by mixing the primary colors together.
  4. What are tertiary colors? Name them.
    Answer: Tertiary colors are formed by mixing a primary and a secondary color together, which is why some hues are hyphenated, i.e. blue-green or yellow-orange. Tertiary colors are yellow-green, red-orange, red-purple, blue-purple, blue-green, and yellow-green.

Color theory is a multitude of categories, definitions, and concepts. It’s about the way color operates in our world. From brands and logos to nature and our environment, colors have different meanings and context, which is important to remember when operating through life.

For example, red can have positive and negative meanings, depending on its context. Red is associated with positive terms, like energy, strength, power, determination, passion, and love, while it’s not so positive connotations are blood, war, and danger. You wouldn’t want to spread red along the walls or floor of a hospital because it could indicate blood. Knowing when and how to use colors is important when it comes to color theory.

Color Psychology

Color psychology is the study of colors in relation to human behavior. It aims to determine how color evokes our emotions and affects our day to day decisions, i.e. the items we purchase. Some colors have emotional weight in various parts of the world, like North America, Africa, and Europe. 


We recently discovered Adobe Color, and we absolutely love it. This cool resource is only available through Adobe Creative Cloud, and it allows you to choose your one of the Color Harmony Rule:

Contact PA’s Creative Team

How much did you know about Color Theory & Color Psychology before listening to our episode and reading this summary? Let us know in the comments below, or send us a Contact message if you would like our Creative team to assist with your next design project.

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