Defining Thought | Describing Creation | Telling Stories | Illustrating Concepts

Color Your World: Blue

Image courtesy of http://7-themes.com/

Image courtesy of http://7-themes.com/

COLOR YOUR WORLD is a series of threads to provide lists of synonyms for different colors. All too often, writers resort to using the same word for a color repeatedly in their writing, leading to a sometimes boring redundancy which can lend itself to making the story uninteresting at worst, ho-hum at best.
This thread series will give you more options to choose from to keep your color references fresh and inviting.

Lets talk about Blue. (My personal favorite.)

According to www.colormatters.com, “Blue is the favorite color of all people. It’s nature’s color for water and sky, but is rarely found in fruits and vegetables. Today, blue is embraced as the color of heaven and authority, denim jeans and corporate logos. It is cold, wet, and slow as compared to red’s warmth, fire, and intensity.

Blue has more complex and contradictory meanings than any other color. These can be easily explained by pinpointing by the specific shade of blue.
Dark blue: trust, dignity, intelligence, authority

Bright blue: cleanliness, strength, dependability, coolness
(The origin of these meanings arise from the qualities of the ocean and inland waters, most of which are more tangible.)

Light (sky) blue: peace, serenity, ethereal, spiritual, infinity
(The origin of these meanings is the intangible aspects of the sky.)

Most blues convey a sense of trust, loyalty, cleanliness, and understanding. On the other hand, blue evolved as symbol of depression in American culture. “Singing the blues” and feeling blue” are good examples of the complexity of color symbolism and how it has been evolved in different cultures.

Blue’s global similarities are significant:

Blue is the #1 favorite color of all people.

53% of the flags in the world contain blue.

Blue is the most commonly used color in corporate identity.

A dark blue suit is professional business attire.

Blue jeans are worn all over the world.

Aristocracy is blue-blooded in all European languages.

Unique Meanings of Blue in Different Cultures

Greeks believe that blue wards off “the evil eye.

The English “to feel blue” has no equivalent in other languages while in German “blau sein” (literally: to be blue) means to be drunk or in Russian “голубой” (literally: light blue) means to be homosexual.

Dark blue is the color of mourning in Korea.

The god Krishna has blue skin.

Shades of blue are described as shallow or deep instead of light or dark in China.

Blue is for a baby girl; pink for a baby boy in Belgium.

“Prince Charming” is called “The Blue Prince” in Italy and Spain.

Designing with Blue

Blue ranks so high as a favorite color that you can’t go wrong if you use blue. However, blue can be over-used and may wind up a design cliché if used alone. Combining blue with another color creates a more creative effect.

Blue is the only color which maintains its own character in all its tones… it will always stay blue;” Raoul Dufy, French Fauvist Painter, 1877-1953.
Tidbits – Points to Ponder

Supposing the color blue was removed from the world, specifically the sea and sky … what color would fill the void?”

Below is a list of names for different shades of blue to assist you in your world building endeavors.
*Note: This is not a completely comprehensive list. It is intended to give you a good selection of color names and choices.
Blue
Shades of blue
Shades of cyan
Template:Shades of blue
A
Air Force blue
Alice blue
Ao
APEC blue
Azure
Azure (heraldry)
B
Baby blue
Bice
Bleu celeste
Bleu de France
Blue in Judaism
Blue-gray
Blue-green
C
Cambridge Blue
Capri
Caribbean amber
Carolina blue
Cerulean
Cobalt blue
Color term
Columbia blue
Cornflower blue
Cyan
D
Dodger blue
Duke blue
E
Egyptian blue
Electric blue
Eton blue
G
Glaucous
H
Han purple and Han blue
I
Indigo
International Klein Blue
Iris
L
Light blue
M
Majorelle Blue
Maya blue
Midnight blue
N
Navy blue
Non-photo blue
O
Oxford Blue
P
Palatinate
Periwinkle
Persian blue
Phthalocyanine Blue BN
Powder blue
Prussian blue
R
Royal blue
S
Sapphire
Sky blue
St. Patrick’s blue
Steel blue
T
Teal
Tiffany Blue
True Blue
Tufts Blue
Turquoise
U
UCLA Blue
Ultramarine
V
Violet-blue
Viridian
Y
Yale Blue
Z
Zaffre

If you would like to see each of these shades, you can find the original listing here:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Shades_of_blue

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