Color for Designers: Exploration, Theory, & Application

Lesson 20/20 - Colors in Nature with Rachel Gregg 2


Color for Designers: Exploration, Theory, & Application


Lesson Info

Colors in Nature with Rachel Gregg 2

So I'll go ahead and introduce myself. I'm rachel, greg, and I am a marketer here a creative life, but in addition to that, I do floral design, so I started studying floral design the last january, so I've been at it for just under a year, and I wanted to have a gn alternative source of income that wasn't related to the screen. I'm a digital marketer, I'm not the screen all day, and I wanted to kind of imagine for myself what I could do as either an additional source of income, where, perhaps when I wanted to transition out of digital marketing, um, that would have me using my hands and have me standing and engaging and sort of the tactile world. So I returned to floral design, which had been a dream of mine since I was a teenager and started taking classes and how just absolutely fallen in love with the craft, and I'm constantly studying constantly learning and was really excited. Tio take on the challenge of applying color theory that you have been studying to my designs, and so what...

I was asked to do was to take some of the color palettes that were created yesterday and to build some designs based on that, so what we have here, I'm going to ask richard to go ahead and kind of extend on the theory because I'm definitely lively I feel like in an intuitive understanding of color which is probably what most where most will come from right um but it definitely as I've developed more of my like sort of understanding of floral design I know that there's there's rules to follow and so so this was fun and so here we have we'll start here, right? Well, pair pair these two which I created based on this light to dark or light and dark so what we have here is we have this's very feminine design that I kind of imagine is like our tea party design and we have just these pale pale pink tulips pale many calla lilies some rice flour in some hydrangea and dahlia and so what I wanted to do here with sort of I mean in contrast to the deep sort of pink of the hydrangea thes tulips are almost white, so I really wanted to get that that, um that really high contrast look happening here you said feminine this meat is very weii talked about the meetings of color and color like a symbolic gesture here so what is it about these colors that suggests the idea of feminine issue for me pink is a very feminine color, particularly this pale pink andi I think what also makes this design so feminine is that there there's sort of minimal hard lines there's a lot of softness there's the there's the you know, the roundness of the dahlia and the hydrangea and so the texture comes into play as well, but definitely a just that it is that it all florals that it's all flowers and no greenery and of course, you know it's set off by its container, which doesn't is an angular masculine and all so just carrying that idea further. What do you guys think of that? You know, this could be a little bit of a controversial thing right? To call something feminine because we're relying upon associations, I think culturally least here in the states we associate pink with feminine so I think most people would think makes sense. Yeah, I don't think it's just the pink I thinkit's the flower iness of it too, like you were saying. Yeah, yeah. And you talked a little bit about not just the color but also the shakes, not flowers. Yes, yes. Oh, you know, something that's very important color design is teo or in floral design. Rather is teo not be so busy that you have nowhere to sort of come and rest your eye, and so in my mind with this design where you're resting, your eye is on these very smooth, soothing lilith so you've got all of the business of the hydrangea and the rice flour and the dahlia, which is variegated and has that pop of yellow in the middle and then you have these kind of more serene calla lilies so it's it's about sort of that balance of textures otherwise way have a difficult time focusing right? So in floral design you want to move a person's eye through a design, but you don't want to sort of make the design so busy that you don't know where to focus so when we're talking about visual hierarchy before, I think that's kind of what you're suggesting here is figuring out a value system with the elements within the arrangement or that you do you call these arrangements? Yeah, you still call arrangements floral design not picky yeah, yeah, I looked up that term because I wasn't quite sure I know that back in the day when my parents were making them, they called them arrangements you know, ftd was all about arrangements I thought it was interesting word arrangement cause that's essentially another word for composition. Yeah, yeah so you're thinking about how your eye moves through the composition from one element to another, some of the colors being kind of ah background in a sense for other colors, so if I look at it over here on the screen, we're looking top down we have these elements down here which are really beautiful, but, you know, my eyes really drawn to these spots of white and contracts it's all about that contrast of light and dark in particular, unless the students what do you think this is an expression of right here, the yellow in the purple complimentary contrast? Exactly. Is that a natural thing, by the way, you think that's sort of a manufactured with the center being so yellow? Yeah, well, most of the flowers that we purchased now have been sort of engineered to some extent. So with dolly is being such a popular flower, I can't imagine that any of them are so close to how they we're originally in nature. So the people who engineered that decided that complementary colors was the way to go. Yeah, they decided that in order to create the most contrast with purple or violet, they would put yellow in the centre as another rich color. Kind of interesting it's. Interesting, right? Because we're just supposing that that's true, but also, if you notice the calla lily and the tulips are pink are yellow right in the centre, too? And so I often think that, um, you find really strong examples of color theory. Working in nature rate so I think we was ron it from nature, right? Like the wisdom was there and then we sort of formalized it by putting it in um, well, I think I remember something about bees being drawn to the yellow because they're yellow like I like financial say no let's say, you know, we often find exactly that, you know, that there are examples in nature and that we think about that going to make color decisions, you know, the sunset blue and orange, uh, things roses, rose bushes, rose hips where you have incredible green and it's incredible red occurring naturally and then hear this manufactured flower where we pick up again on complementary colors so it's now part of our culture, you associate these colors together? Yeah, interesting well into extend on that we were talking before the class about how in floral design green almost always becomes your neutral on you have to be really intentional if you're choosing for green to become your focal and that's because there's so much green occurring in the net actual world that it becomes essentially a backdrop of color for us like it becomes and we don't pretend not to notice all of the green that were sort of surrounded by every day because the grass kills trees yeah, it's just so omnipresent as to become neutral and if you're looking at rose hips bushes and you see the green, the majority of it is green and then these little red highlights happening out and I'm sure they're they're also to attract the pollination process the bees going toward that color and differentiate in it from the green in the background. So we learned to appreciate these things, and then we adapt them in our own way a different this one's for you arranging the flowers and choosing them based on the color palette as opposed to your normal approach. Is there a difference? Yeah, definitely so I am I'm still in a place where I'm where I'm learning and so I'm not creating designs specified by clients. I have a little bit of that going on, but generally I get the good fortune of going to the market and knowing what kind of design I'm going to be making in terms of its going to be a centerpiece is going to be a buffet, pieces it and and then getting teo select my flower is based on kind of what's most beautiful to me on dh then the color palette sort of developed there and I'll have my color wheel like on my phone after I find my my beautiful focal flower and develop it from there, but in this case I had to go and and find beautiful materials that match with color which is definitely something that's more common for you refer to a color wheel when you're making selection yes yes and many of the women that I know that doof world aside and do the same well yeah that's interesting yeah that's good to know it is well, you know it applies tio our work right? We have two primarily you know, weddings are floral design is you know, sort of a stalwart of weddings and and people tend to is of one color that is the sort of the problem what's going to guide all of the other decisions and so you have to know what's going to compliment it what's going accent it how you can emphasize it without sort of losing it and drowning it so I'm doing a wedding this weekend where we're going to bring in a lot of burgundy flowers but it's in a very dark space and so I had to you know, like so I talked with the bride about how we're gonna wanna have some some of this sort of creamy or lighter colors so that not everything gets lost so context is really important yeah and you have to get a little bit imaginative do you think about other color models besides the color wheel for example like that red down there that you use that grid has dark reds and light reds it'sjust concept of light and dark certainly becomes part of it I would say yeah and I think that that that's a little more obvious to make that selection right on and went but when you're when you're reaching a little bit to sort of do a try attic arrangement or a complimentary arrangement then then I definitely want to refer tio give me an example of a try attic arrangement so what did I do recently I did an or a red orange was red orange blue and what would be the third there because that's what it wass it would be red red, orange blue and orange blue and yellow and yeah yeah yeah so that's a definitely a it's the three primary colors much like we talked about triumph yeah and if we could spin that and we could spend it toward orange, green and purple another triad do you also deal with split compliments where you're dealing with that rather than the two colors you're dealing with a yellow and red violet and blue violet something like that? Yeah yeah definitely you learning theory I'm definitely learning color theory and because so often you know that the hues are something like a red violet or it's not gonna be the pure color and you almost don't want the pure color because it seems like a little bit of character and could be kind of static so you're probably dealing with the same issues that we've been talking about during this workshop all these different color contrasts color chords do you think of them as chords like harmonic no I'm not a very musical person so that wouldn't be a bit that's not a naturally yeah I love the idea of the colors fear though because I had sort of the same questions about the bronze in the brown and going deep yeah yeah and so exactly exactly that that was really I think sort of visualizing this fear um and get you no answers a lot of questions let's talk about the centerpiece okay great cause I'm staring at it so beautiful s oh I love this this is the belladonna and some snapdragons moves and um some scabby osa and here the goal was the inspiration rather was was this palette right here um and so I have this color palette and I went in and you know didn't know what would be my focal flower um I thought maybe I'd find a deep purple but I saw these beautiful surprisingly full surprisingly open for the market roses and knew that I would have to be my focal um so we talked about this a little earlier where I may be lost some of the some of the blue and some of the purple here you know, it definitely becomes kind of a more of an accent unless with the focal because we have the orange red in the pink um but I think this is still a close interpretation of that pallet on you know it it honors that while also you know letting the letting the materials speak and the materials where these were the beautiful flowers we're the ones who get to talk the most so I think it's ah it's an expression of the triad that we you talked about you know the cot the primary colors red yellow and blue that's what I see when I look at this and what it go to you know color scheme it says those colors which we all grew up with you know think about the toys and you had when your kids yeah and this was um I just want to say this this was supposed be the warm and cool and so that's why I wasn't afraid to go with the with the snapdragons because I knew that they sort of reflected that warm now you're also using some the green's here is the background and this eucalyptus which is also an expression of thie opposite of the very vivid colors that you have in these the roses these blue flowers the red flowers and snapdragons so the eucalyptus is very dull in comparison yeah through using that is sort of a ground or a background yeah well and I also what I was really hoping that the belladonna would pick up with the blue in the eucalyptus to really to give that a little more you know, sort of place toe to express it like another place to express itself I think that works sexually you have the darker green sort of on the inside now some of that is caused by shadow, but that really relates we look over here you see that relationship of here to here so kind of bridge is light and dark yeah it's really beautiful when you get like you got the you know the bridges are right like you've got this orange and then you've got the yellow and then um that's very important in floral design to make sure you have a bridge because it can be easy to sort of pick something that's beautiful and when it's time to assemble it that they could be very desperate, right? So and that's, you know, kind of the beauty of flowers is that they are they often create that nice bridge rate because the the variation in the actual pedals themselves now we're seeing these from above and most people don't look at these giant, but you're arranging these things probably with the idea of looking at them from above to some degree maybe in your imagination in your head so one of the most common this would be the closest design teo what's called a hand tied bouquet and I didn't build it like a hand type okay, I'm not great anti bouquets but how you actually do build them as you you look at them from you know from what will be above as you designed them but yeah, because if you're holding them out in front of you yeah so you actually you build them like stems facing you and then how you check out my turn now and so this is this is, you know, my own large to that type of design, but yeah, but I know I'm designing from front, you know, this perspective and then I just keep turning to make sure we're building on all sides because in this case all of these they're you know, they're intended to be butin appreciated on all sides, so from low sitting down like this which is building the most common way of looking at it from the side but also thinking about what happens from the top because I think that's also essential it's a sculptural, smelly right? And you didn't get a very different impression of it looking at it from the side you know, as opposed to looking out at the top you see much less of the yellow actually, the red and the blue shorts become much more of an active part of the composition yeah, you get the blooms look very different from the top of its funds actually have that perspective because it's a little bit of a wild flower weedy look if you're just everything across from it now how do you I'm sure that the vase the container is in a central part of the arrangement of the composition so how do you choose the things s o the base really in a lot of the container really in a lot of ways dictates scale and so you know there's there's going ian experienced laurel designer who knows that it should be you know I think it's with plus hype plus a half uh really yeah there's there's a rule to that but most sort of contemporary floral designers you know break that rule you wantto have visual balance that's really important in a good way to do that is to make sure that you're that you're sort of at least mirroring the hype um but I don't think it needs to be so tall so with I mean not the west of the base the weather the arrange know that with the rest of the base of the container and then the height and then and in half and then a half yeah so in other words we take the with which is this add that to the height thiss way and that becomes the overall yeah yeah so it's interesting what about the design of the container it's it's all made up out of vertical lines so in this in this case you know I selected the containers and I and you which containers you know, I definitely knew that I was going to do the light and dark in this container and I because I imagine it being you know what it is which is this very um you know, feminine my vue feminine floral design so I you know and that means you know lady tea party time and it looks like it's floating and this is a more rustic on so definitely the the shade of of the container the hype um the overall sort of look of it right says a lot about what kind of design you know, very formal I mean, this this design probably you could do is sort of a shabby chic over here, right? But um this would look a lot less glamorous in a different kind of container. One of the things we talked about earlier today was in just compositional contrasts of geometric and organic and I'm getting that sense of this to you have this essentially what is a rectangle around cylinder it's perfectly geometric and then with all these vertical lines right? And then it explodes into this very kind of very un not nearly a geometric but still vertical lines so there's some kind of a look right here and you see the vertical line that goes from perfect gem geometric like industrial vertical lines into more organic vertical lines and then exploding into these colors and so this is a progression of simple too complex as you move up yeah yeah, but I think also that, like sort of the patina on this tones down that industrial look right and it gives it more of that organic feel right that shape that dark shape that actually is just through there is a very organic shape the base there the container itself is an expression of that geometric and organic contrast even in our students have worked with florals in things that they do something a new concept you seems to be so uh richard, these concepts we've been discussing for the for the last session I think these flowers really sort of bring this alter life how would photographers designers other creators maybe take these concepts on bring them into their everyday work? This is a great example I'm looking at this right now and thinking well, you know, primary colors there it isyou know and we had just done this little experiment with found objects and putting them together in a color wheel and and not necessarily always thinking about the color wheel is the only model here you have a try out the primary colors and maybe there's another color model that you can use maybe it's rgb you know it's why not it's an experimental condition sounds like there are very specific rules though that you're following based on acceptability perhaps within the community is it ever uh does it ever occur to you to produce something that is that is purposefully not balan just, um we definitely play and um and and joke in florida you know as we're designing and classes do something that's meaty, outrageous, you know and, uh an experiment I mean that's kind of the beauty of being in a place where you're studying and learning and you get to experiment whereas when you're doing client work you know to toe the line you know to some extent I mean you want teo you want your floral designs to be an expression of your style and your aesthetic um most of the time it is about beauty yeah so you then find yourself gravitating toward classical concept of beauty so the primary colors something that we think of it is beautiful and the yellow being light and the red being in the middle in the blue being somewhere else. So you have these three colors that are very distinct from each other then the green comes in green is sometimes referred to as the psychological forthe color within the primary set it's not really a primary color for painters but it's a psychological primary color and that were often used to it as you say is a better color yeah, we talked about the last one lets do that this is the vivid and dole design and um this is kind of ambitious palette to try to build off of that would have taken a lot of materials to perfectly mirror but let's call it great you look great by the way, we haven't quite seen them this way put together like this so this was this was really fun because as soon as I knew I was going to be pairing dole in vivid, I knew that I would use this dusty miller, which is just such a I mean dull right in terms of it is this grey white fuzzy plants and it's it's it's popular in floral design and I really like it and it reminds me of my grandmother and, um but it was just going to be such a fun um, color to contrast with something vivid, so when I found these I mean these sweet williams to me when I saw them, I knew that they were the flower for this design because there they're the epitome of vivid in my mind there, so color saturated um they're just you know, I don't I don't know how well the viewers it at home can conceive how pop they have, but they already know yeah, you mentioned because some people were saying in the middle section they couldn't see the purple that I was explaining them no, it is in their unfortunate calibration to screen you've done very well in choosing the colors that matched the palette this also is an expression of warm and cool, so you have this reddish red orange of these and then the very violent over here, and I find that that is, you know, they're adjacent colors on the color wheel there, very close to each other, and so they're they're they have similar characteristics but are different enough so there's a formal contrast there it goes beyond just the texture and shape it has this beautiful color contrasts of very subtle, warm and cool, and those background court shapes these things really beautiful, just the shape of them is really interesting, very active, yeah, so something t think about in floral design is so is that no flower sort of gets lost? And I'm one of my favorite flowers is actually in this design, which is this scabby also, and I think she is just so lovely, and she is surprisingly long lasting and really lovely unique flower and I thought, oh that's great, because there is also a scabby oh so that's very dull, which most of them are, however you really kind of lose it against even, you know, even here, and as we're looking at it directly, you can kind of lose it against the grey so that's just interesting, sort of experienced have in terms of, like actually working with color and, you know, you might have something that's so beautiful, but maybe it needs to be a little bit more saturate stand on its own otherwise there, you know, it has a little bit of purple to it, so it acts a bit is a bridge, but I would like it if I had a little bit more color tio to really give some contrast now, would you ever you say something like the color grid to create, uh, an arrangement a competition of colors this way here's a starting point? Yeah, we'll definitely so for me, you know, but something that I really like to do is I like to sort of have to have an image that is that is my inspiration point and so might not be formalizes a grid, but it is, you know, it is a color recommended place, an example. Yeah, so I'm doing a wedding this weekend, and I have a beautiful image of some really deep burgundy paired with cem um, with a pale peach and I've had a background, my wallpaper for about a month of the images, just like, perfectly burned into my mind of these are the thieves of the colors that I'm going to be shopping for, but it's, not flowers they are flower, they are flows you ever take your inspiration from other kinds of found colors yeah definitely I actually didn't exercise a few months ago where you just went through magazines and you know, picked out the images that kind of spoke to me and uh yeah interested yeah yeah, I think that's important you know, we were talking about photography earlier and and how just taking snapshots you know, instagram pictures and seeing color relationships and so you might see primary colors or colors variations of warm and cool or these kinds of contrasts maybe in some of their context completely something not having anything to do with flowers at all and that inspires your flowers or you go to a museum and you see a painting and that inspires an arrangement those colors you see they're kind of interesting I find that happening all the time in design I would think that also it would it would begin toe happens to some degree here. Well yeah, well and I think that you know that sort of as my experience willing it sort of continue to happen more and more I was thinking about having like corporate clients, for instance and like designing for a new entry way for corporate client which is something that very common for floral designers to do and you really have to take in the con, you know, like taking the into consideration the context where the flowers will be displayed, but also, you know, the company's lookbook, their logo. What what sort of fits with the with the aesthetic that they have in their office? And then how can you design flowers? Um and use, you know, variable material? I mean something that's kind of fun and wild about floral design is mean, we're working with materials in the natural world. We can't dictate with certainty what's going to be available in a certain day, and so you have tio you have teo really have some flexibility there you have to sort of no where you khun replace something and where you where you have to find an equivalent alternative, but doing doing corporate client work, I think, is a, you know, an opportunity to really have to be inspired by something that's way outside of the natural world, right? I think we're almost ready to move on, but before we go, I just wanted to ask one more question and one of the most my most vivid memories of growing up in a greenhouse, and being aware of colors was christmas time and points at us. Yeah, my parents grew points at us, and it was the group point centers for a lot of other flores as well. And so the red in the green. And was that coincidental? Do you know anything about that? Where point said is always naturally ready? I you know, I don't know, I then you see them, so now you see them soft, they come in red and with a where they adopted as a christmas flower because they were red and green. It seems so right. Actually, no, I wouldn't miss your seasonality, right? Because they're red flowers all your long, but what makes points that is that's bad goat teo would be definitely see, I mean, you think of so much of what we think of us like, oh, tulip spring fire well, blooms in the spring. Flowers are so tied to those seasonal events like christmas and other holidays. Are there other color combinations that you can think of that are very distinctly like cultural or symbolic of certain holidays? Autumn is I mean, it's, the time of year that you're going to see a lot. More orange and a lot more brown and arrangements then you would see any other time of the year again because of the leaves and the use of those materials in the pieces yeah I mean it's something that's really fun about floral design is it reflects the season so closely while flowers do move all around the world on dso you can access materials that air from you know a different part of the world that's in a different season primarily most your materials are going to reflect the season that you're in regionally and so your designs are goingto and also, you know the kind of celebrations the people are having and so they would need designs for right and if you got your house decorated with red green you bringing the point status that is part of the thing back one question price so one of the principles of color theory that you talked about yesterday richard, was how different colors have human really exactly but it's different levels of intensity like the yellows three times is intense the provide values right like values on dso that's reflected in the piece that was made but in the flowers it looks like a tree from the view that I could see the yellow and the purple are kind of more evenly matched is that but it still looks good obviously is that something that is that part of color theory that only applies in certain areas or is that something that shows up in other areas of colors? Well no, not at all when I look at this eye and mostly focused on those roses and I think you said that you wanted us to focus on those roses if he only had two of those yellow roses in there I might look more like the grid but we wouldn't be so kind of focusing on those yellow roses mush right? So you chose to really put the emphasis on those roses you could have chosen the other direction as well and loaded up with purples and blues right and really kind of dunmore what the grid is doing which is creating more of a sense of like balance based on just those light ideas like concepts right here we're looking at these roses that's like the main thing I'm looking out there I'm seeing a lot of yellow but the blue and the red do a really good job of balancing that yeah yeah, but I think it would apply yes, absolutely but you're always thinking about that and it's not necessarily that you're always trying to create this perfect balance you're going for effect so we want to look at the roses so put him in ad more roses into it same thing through with the grid if you wanted the yellow to really be the dominant force in the composition loaded up with yellow great great thank you so much. Thank you, theo. Of course reach rachel online got instant gram dot com her instagram account, his dog would florals, that's all one word dog would morals you also find on twitter as miss underscore greg areas, so I'm sure should come on. Thank you. Rachel is really wonderful to see your work here is, well, she's a wonderful marketeer, but who knew that she was a very, very talented for all designers? Well, does beautiful work to richard. We're coming to the end when I was one last thing you want teo to cover, which was music. Yeah, I wanted to just throw this out there is is is a personal project, something that I got involved in and I'm going to walk to the front, so I knew a little bit of an arrangement here. So, um, I'm a bit of a guitar player I'm not a great guitar player at all, and so I find other ways of expressing my love of guitars through other ways, and one of them is color, and this is something that happened a little bit of coincidentally, I was asked by, you know, move cards, have you guys ever dealt with moo cards? They're great. So the cool thing about this these cards is that you can have a hundred different faces, and then the backside is all the same, just great thing in the little corner things. So that was a bit of a promotional tool for them, and I could do whatever I wanted to. And so when I was given this assignment, I was given this shape, and the first thing I thought of was that looks like a core diagram shape. It looks like the neck of a guitar, and I had gone through a lot of different ideas first, and then I came up with this, and so I decided to actually make core diagrams based on color theory. So what I did and this is also based on an experiment that one of my students did, and it's actually, in my book, music and color, I created a system where the twelve notes of the musical stale scale are each aligned with one of the twelve colors from the color wheel, and I begin with red is being c and actually did a little historical research into this and found out that most people who are correlating musical notation with color I have found that red, um, should belong with c and so I just kind of took it as a point. It could have been perhaps done in a different way. What else I did was created the little finger dots on the core diagrams in complementary colors so each of these little color cord cards is an expression of a split complimentary color set and when I do this it was purely teo make a decorative set of cord cards perhaps for someone who might be interested in learning and if you're keen on this you can kind of look and see that actually what I have here is um not six strings with four strings and so these are actually for a tenner guitar which has four strings all this put these over here and it's a limited range of cord so I only have major minor in the seventh um in the sharps um but what I found what's really interesting about this is a different way of putting together chord progressions so rather than thinking about them in the traditional model of a musical theory where we're thinking about core progressions based on music theory we're basing it on color theory so one of the things I like to do is just take color cord cards they begin to think about arrangements based on colors so primary colors and use those colors as a basis for creating a song rather than coming at it from a musical side I'm coming at it from a color side is a very playful approach it's very unpredictable approach I end up with very unpredictable kinds of um, poor chord progressions and when I know I'm making things that have sort of looping repetitions and things like that so it's a great it has turned out to be a great device for me just to play with color and play with sound simultaneously and also express my music, my love of music and coming at it. From this point of view, it is putting colors together in different ways, ways that I wouldn't necessarily even think about it musical notation or cords have you come up with any progressions or songs that you like a lot based on this approach? I only play, you know, this is one of those things where my music is for myself, I'm not a performer, not like this, where I have stand up in front of people I don't ever want to be that person. I have a sister who was a classical musician, and she does that, but for me, it's all about play something personally for myself, so when I do it, I'm in my room. I've got my headphones on, or if no one's home and I blasting music through an app, I can do that as well, but this is purely about play purely about experimentation, I never even recorded anything, I just sit down for an hour or two. And I'm playing away but what this enables me to do is approach the court progressions in a way that's completely spontaneous and not based on any kind of preconceived notion of sound and cords going together it's really fun and the other thing is that you've legalized everything I knew about color theory I actually used its color star to help me create the colored cords how to put them together super fun have you seen any patterns of like, you know, chord progressions with complementary colors sound great or don't or no? Well, teo, I'm not judgmental in that way and the kinds of things that I play are not really based on necessarily beautiful compositional it's it's more just based on sounds more of a sound designer I guess that I think of it and I'm not doing it for a particular effect or for a particular reason I'm just playing so sometimes it does end up being really beautiful and very lyrical and sometimes it sounds really bad and maybe move away from that yeah, I think it would be interesting on dh somebody loves music I think would be interesting tio hear the song or, you know, just the notes the court has begun to quit and be able to see it together just kind of put it together yeah, it kind of interesting that it would be interesting for someone perhaps but what I want to emphasize, you're not unlike what we've seen with the found objects and making the color wheel and these beautiful floral arrangements, you know, finding ways of integrating color theory into your everyday life into other parts of your life that don't necessarily have anything to do with color it's super fun. I had such a great time doing this, and I'm going to try to expand the serious now into six strings friends have asked me to do you kill a lease? Maybe I'll go beyond that into others, other kinds of strange instruments. Now that I have the core idea, aiken extrapolated from there there actually beautiful pieces, and I just love the way you've laid him out, and I love the way it's possible to mix up the diff the colors and changed them very, very cool idea, it's a fresh way of looking at music, right mood, music, income so, richard, we have kind of come to the end of this cause. What would you like to leave our audience with your final thoughts and inspiration that you'd like them to walk away with? From this course? Well, to think about color is something that you can integrate into your daily life that's what we've ended with to be aware of the possibilities of color, too, always be thinking about other ways of of looking at color so using the color theories that we've talked about contrast of light and dark, warm and cool vivid and dull complimentary contrast the contrast of proportion which we barely just kind of tip the iceberg on perhaps even utilizing some of the methodologies that we've used in order to create colors and chews on colors in your own work but made mainly is you know if you think back to the top of the workshop I talked about awareness and gaining confidence and that's ultimately what it's all about for me if you could become confident with your color choices you're going to be a better designer going to be a better artist you're going to expand beyond your preconceptions in your comfort zone that's kind of what this is all about and I'm hoping that that works for you guys and for the honest at home too for the online audience just let me just share some of the comments coming in richard for you red scorpio says this is another excellent course buckwheat is saying for me rachel's floral presentations brought all of this together in the reasoning importance of the color pattern so thank you richard thank you rachel comedy gumball machine is saying this has been a great course right up their alley and see poodle is saying I just loved the course lots of inspiration right? So you've inspired a lot of people here created five today which is super I want to say thank you very much for that one to thank you all for watching we couldn't do creative life without you so thank you for joining us wherever you are in the world I know we've had a turkey we've had egypt we've had tuk we've had the netherlands lots of people in the netherlands actually so thank you very much for being with us and wherever you are in the world you're the reason that we're here and thank you for supporting there's always one say a huge thank you to our wonderful studio audience who've been fantastic and seeing their work of the last couple of days have been really mad magic too so thank you for being with us and I can tell you so much better than the students we had yesterday but I really just want to see another couple thank you's to the wonderful creative life crew there are so many people who work for months and months and months to make sure all of this comes together are content producer justin of course and also head of channel laura they did a wonderful job in bringing richard creative life and bringing this course the light comes on me richard but a causal the crew who work in the booth on to work in the studio kate our line producer wants a big thank you to these two guys alex and adrian because they've caught captured so many wonderful things in the last couple days have been amazing job, so thank you guys, thank you to jim, my wonderful co host, richard. This has been amazing. I've so enjoyed working with you over the last couple days. I hope you'll come back. I hope so. I hope so, too. Let's. Give a huge global round, forced to our wonderful instructor, richard male, thank you very much, mrs mouthful. Her contributions on linus while she had some great lyrics, ideas for color songs created life of this color cause it's been amazing. Thank you for being with us for this course, it's a wrap.

Class Description

Our response to color comes from the place in our brain where trust, loyalty, behavior, and decision occur – every successful project relies on a designer making smart choices about color.

In Color for Designers: Exploration, Theory, & Application, Richard Mehl will give you a foundational understanding of color theory principles and demonstrate how to apply them. Richard has studied alongside design legends, Paul Rand, Bradbury Thompson and Herbert Matter and in this class he’ll share insights gleaned from 12 years of teaching and writing about color in design.

Richard takes an accessible approach to the serious study of color theory for designers. You’ll be exposed to a relevant series of ideas and skills by exploring a range of analog and digital projects. Richard will discuss:

  • Color terminology and meaning
  • How to view color in context
  • Contrast grids and color illusion
  • Tips for creating harmonious color palettes

In Color for Designers: Exploration, Theory, & Application you’ll develop a new awareness and sensitivity to color that will bolster your confidence in your personal and professional design work.



How wonderful to have such an experienced, thoughtful teacher, who takes educating others so seriously. The depth and breadth of his teaching skill is matched by his knowledge of the subject. I studied art in school, own some of the color books he recommends, and learned far more than I thought possible. And he does it all in such a kind, affirming, supportive way. What a calm guide. How lucky are we to have access to a class with him!