How Does Color Theory and the Color Wheel Affect Your Designs?

When you are designing any type of print material or web media for your business, you need to first think about what colors you will use. In order to have good judgment in picking your colors from the spectrum, you will need to have a good understanding of color theory basics and the color wheel.

Color theory is the study of color and how it is linked to the emotions, symbols, and senses. It is important to learn color theory because you want to make sure that you are communicating the right message to your audience. Learn the meanings and messages behind your business' colors.

The color wheel is a tool that helps you create color schemes at your fingertips. It is the easy way to make some basic combinations to get the most out of your full color designs.



For an even more in-depth look into color meanings and color schemes I HIGHLY recommend this book that I've been using for years as a graphic designer. It's called Color - Messages & Meanings: A PANTONE Color Resource.

You can read my full review of it here.



Colors and Business Identity/Individuality

Isn't it the color that makes you remember the company? Think about what makes businesses stand out to you.

When you picture the McDonald's logo, what do you think of? Is it not the golden arches you remember, not just arches. Did you know that yellows, golds, and reds are the key colors in the fast food industry?

Here's a fun challenge...

Below is a list of popular brands. Think about what colors are associated with those logos. You might be surprised how much the color is impressed in your mind when you picture the logo. Then think about why they chose the colors they did in relation to their target market and their industry

  • Pepsi
  • Coca-Cola
  • Nike
  • Target
  • NBC
  • Starbucks
  • UPS
  • Yahoo
  • Twitter
  • FedEx
  • Google
  • Mattel

Even if you already have chosen a color scheme for your company such as red, white, and blue you still need to ask yourself:

  • Are these colors usually associated with the field of business I am in?
  • Do my colors work for my type of business and make me stand out?
  • Are my business' colors different enough for the average person to distinguish the difference between me and my competitor?


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