What do colours mean? Yellow, green and grey in teeth means it’s bad news! In others, it could mean all sorts of things.
We live in a colourful world and depending on your culture and where you live, colour provides different meaning for all of us. People all over the world professes that a world with colour is so much more beautiful but in some cultures, some colours are more beautiful than others. So depending on where you are, where you live, where you’ve lived or who you’re talking to, you are ‘coloured’ by your culture and religion, affecting the associations by which you view a particular colour.
The old adage ‘One man’s meat is another man’s poison’, holds very true especially in design so knowing who your target audience is, is of paramount importance. The colour red for instance speaks of strength, prosperity and vitality to the Chinese but signifies anger and danger to the Japanese.
So to convey a subtle message using colours, try this.
Happiness – Yellow represents happiness in the Middle East. Likewise, yellow and orange says the same thing in Western cultures. Orange represents happiness in Eastern cultures as well.
Purity and Love – Red and white says purity in India. White in the Middle East, China, Thailand, Korea represents purity. Red is love in Western countries, while white symbolises purity.
Strength and power – Yellow in Japan, red in China, green in the Middle East just goes to show that colour association across cultures are extremely diverse. Red is the colour of strength and black is power in Europe and America.
Trust – Black means trust in the Chinese culture.
Royalty – Yellow is the colour of royalty in China, Thailand and in most Eastern countries in fact. Purple represents royalty in European countries.
Luck, Wealth and Prosperity – Red symbolises luck, wealth and prosperity in the Chinese culture, green and yellow in the Middle East. Green is the colour of luck and wealth to the Western world. Purple is also a symbol of wealth in Eastern countries, including Japan.
Passion and Excitement – Red in Western cultures.
Comfort and Protection – Blue in the Middle East and purple in India.
Peace – Blue in Europe. White is mostly used a symbol of peace for the Cherokees (native American tribe) and Western countries. Also used in India to signify peace.
Danger – Red in most parts of the world including the Middle East, Europe, America, Japan and Asia Pacific, represents danger.
Death and Mourning – White in Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indian and Middle Eastern countries. Black in the Western world. Red is the colour of mourning for South Africans and the Turks, yellow for the people of Egypt, Mexico and Myanmar. Blue for Iranians. Purple for Brazil and green is the colour of death in South America.
Technology – Green symbolises technology in Japan.
Mystery – Black is the colour of mystery in Japan and is considered mysterious and evil in the Middle East.
Infidelity – Green screams out infidelity loud and clear to the Chinese culture.