January 27, 2021
Color Theory in Events Pt. I
Color plays a vital role in establishing the mood of your event. Lighting serves to create ambiance, and different color schemes elicit certain emotions and therefore imbue feelings into your guests. ‘Color Theory’ encompasses a collection of rules, guidelines, and concept applications with the intention of appealing to your desired guest. Color theory creates a logical structure, but still remains infinitely open to interpretation. There are no concrete laws one must follow, instead it is best to simply begin by asking yourself: what type of atmosphere do I want to create? Here, we have five different examples of how color theory can be utilized to create the mood you seek.
Blue – Calming, Spiritual, Wisdom
Complimentary Colors: White, Silver, Magenta, Lavender
Blue is often associated with calmness, peace, wisdom, and has spiritual and religious connotations in many cultures. Different shades of blue will imbue different emotions; however, the deep, royal blue is the most idyllic for events where the energy is at a medium and conversational level. Blue is also excellent to use for lighting to highlight stage performers, water elements, and beverage displays.
When not to use blue: weddings, high-energy concerts, highlighting food, trade shows, daytime BBQ’s.
Red – Power, Passion, Excitement
Complimentary Colors: Charcoal, Teal, Blackberry, Gold
Red is the color of passion, power, and excitement. Red is energy, heat, and fire. Red brings about powerful associations in people, so be mindful and deliberate when using this color for your event. It can heighten energy, so is best used for high-energy music events, to highlight speakers on topics of importance, and to create an alluring atmosphere.
When not to use red: acoustic concerts, highlighting beverages, trade shows, birthday parties, daytime events
Purple – Imagination, Mysticism, Playfulness
Complimentary Colors: Black, Electric Blue, Magenta, Blackberry
Purple means playtime. It has been associated with imagination, abundance, and fantasy. It can be simultaneously retro and futuristic, both exciting and subdued. Purple is the color you are going to want at your cannabis party, your electronic music concert, and your brand launch. Purple is groovy, captivating, and can give your event a spacey feel, an 80’s vibe, or an upscale aura.
When not to use purple: daytime events, trade shows, funerals
Green – Earth, Renewal, Vitality
Complimentary Colors: Peach, Beige, Terra Cotta, White, Gold
If your event is outdoors or during the daytime, deep shades of green are going to be excellent. Green is associated with nature, renewal, and vitality. It can be paired with several different colors to create different moods: pair green with peach for an outdoor wedding or dinner party, with gold for a classy event. Green is life, green is everywhere, you truly cannot go wrong with green. Green is a gorgeous color to use in any scenario, however, there is a difference between using green accent decorations and green lighting. Do not use exclusively green lighting unless it is intended to be a Halloween or spooky event. In that case, you may as well throw in a fog machine.
When not to use green: to light an entire indoor night-time event.
Orange – Creativity, Cheerfulness, Enthusiasm
Complimentary Colors: Violet, Yellow, Pink, Black, Teal, Red
Orange is kinetic and associated with happiness and movement. Orange calls to mind the sun, warmth, and enthusiasm. Orange gradients utilized in lighting with fog machines will highlight performers, decorations, and gives your guests a flattering glow. Research has found that orange increases oxygen supply to the brain, producing an energizing effect, and stimulating brain activity. Many restaurants use some variation of orange lighting because it is known to bring about more intense sensations, and to increase appetite.
When not to use orange: There is essentially never a bad time to utilize orange in some capacity. The only note is that if you use all orange lighting with all orange accent décor, prepare yourself for an intense evening.