Saturday, 17 November 2012

Colour My World Blue

Color icon blue.svg
Blue Moon 
You saw me standing alone 
Without a dream in my heart 
Without a love of my own... 

When I think of blue, that song originally sung by Connee Boswell in 1935 and later covered by The Marcels, Ella Fitzgerald, Elvis Presley, among others, is the first thing that comes to mind. This month's colour for the Colour My World Challenge is blue. Easy one, right? Right!

According to Wikipedia (forgive my laziness; I have a very short window sans kids here), "In painting and traditional colour theory, blue is one of the three primary colours of pigments (red, yellow, blue), which can be mixed to form a wide gamut of colours. The RYB model was used for colour printing by Jacob Christoph Le Blon as early as 1725. Later, printers discovered that more accurate colours could be created by using combinations of magenta, cyan, yellow and black ink, put onto separate inked plates and then overlaid one at a time onto paper. This method could produce almost all the colours in the spectrum with reasonable accuracy.

In the 19th century, the Scottish physicist James Clerk Maxwell found a new way of explaining colours, by the wavelength of their light. He showed that white light could be created by combining red, blue and green light, and that virtually all colours could be made by different combinations of these three colours. His idea, called additive colour or the RGB colour model, is used today to create colours on televisions and computer screens. The screen is covered by tiny pixels, each with three fluorescent elements for creating red, green and blue light. If the red, blue and green elements all glow at once, the pixel looks white. As the screen is scanned from behind with electrons, each pixel creates its own designated colour, composing a complete picture on the screen. Blue is the colour of light between violet and green on the visible spectrum. Hues of blue include indigo and ultramarine, closer to violet; pure blue, without any mixture of other colours; Cyan, which is midway on the spectrum between blue and green, and the other blue-greens turquoiseteal, and aquamarine."

According to Sensational Color, "Blue calms and sedates, cools and aids intuition." Blue is the least "gender specific" colour in terms of preference, having equal appeal to both men and women. People associate blue with sympathy, harmony, faithfulness, friendship and confidence. But it's also associated with sadness and depression (e.g. "He was feeling blue").

Random blue fact goodness from Wikipedia and Sensational Color:

  • In Russian and some other languages, there is no one word for blue, but rather different words for light blue (голубой, goluboy) and dark blue (синий, siniy).
  • Several languages, including Japanese, Thai, Korean, and Lakota Sioux, use the same word to describe blue and green. 
  • Blue is commonly used in the Western hemisphere to symbolise boys, in contrast to pink used for girls. But as we saw when we talked about Pink, in the early 1900s, blue was the colour for girls, since it had traditionally been the colour of the Virgin Mary in Western Art), while pink was for boys (as it was akin to the colour red, considered a masculine colour).
  • In Thailand, blue is associated with Friday on the Thai solar calendar. Anyone may wear blue on Fridays and anyone born on a Friday may adopt blue as their colour.
  • Blue, blue-green, and green are sacred colors in Iran, where they symbolize paradise.
  • In India, paintings of the god Krishna often depict him as having blue skin.
  • In Greece, the color blue is believed to ward off "the evil eye." Those who believe in this Greek superstition often wear a blue charm necklace or blue bracelet for protection.
  • In 1873 a German immigrant in San Francisco, Levi Strauss, invented a sturdy kind of work trousers, made of denim fabric and coloured with indigo dye, called blue jeans. In 1935, they were raised to the level of high fashion by Vogue magazine. 
  • Blue is the favored color choice for toothbrushes.
  • Powder blue is often used in products to promote cleanliness and purity.
  • IBM's Deep Blue became the first computer to win a chess tournament against a reigning world champion chess master. Deep Blue had 32 processors and processed about 200 million chess moves per second in its historic six-game match against Garry Kasparov. 
  • Over the past decade, scientists have reported the successful use of blue light in the treatment of a wide variety of psychological problems, including addictions, eating disorders, impotence, and depression.
  • People are often more productive in blue rooms.
  • Owls are the only birds that can see the color blue.
  • Mosquitoes are attracted to the color blue twice as much as to any other colour.
  • The colour blue is the least common color in the foods we eat.
  • If you drive a Dark Blue vehicle, you send the message that you are credible, confident, dependable. (Therefore, you know that you can trust what I say here, because I drive a dark blue minivan!)
  • If you drive a Light or Mid-Blue vehicle, you send the message that you are cool, calm, faithful, and quiet. 
This interesting video by the Blue Man Group actually talks about how our eyes see colour.

Blue resources:
What do you think about when you hear blue? What would you do with blue? I think I know what I'd like to do this month so we'll see you on November 30th for the link up.


  1. Blue has always been my fav color :-)

  2. Blue makes me smile. I think of blue skis, kites, sailing, sunshine, and laughter. Blue is the background that makes life sparkle.

  3. Another fascinating post. The blue spectrum is my favourite and I was born on a Friday! I drive a blue car. Krisna, I think, Means black but he's dark blue in pictures so you can see him. I'm looking forward to seeing what you make this month :)


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