“ Be the Change that you want to see in the world. ” ...is by Mahatma Gandhi...

17 marzo 2011

Colour can affect our moods

All of us live in a world where at some point, colour will be a part of, and effect us in our every day lives. Colour in everyday life is very diverse... from knowing that a fruit is ripe to eat, to understanding how 


Colour can affect our moods. 




 Blue can be Calming 

 BLUE relates to the Throat Chakra. 


Associated organs to this chakra are the throat, lungs and the endocrine gland is the thyroid gland. The upper digestive tract can be affected by imbalance in this area. Blue relates to self expression. Speech, communication, the ability to communicate our needs and requirements. Spirit of truth and purpose. 


Associated problems Some associated problems relating to the throat chakra are: Thyroid problems - over active/ under-active; Anorexia nervosa this is a multi-chakra problem, but has a strong connection to the throat chakra; asthma; bronchitis; hearing problems; tinnitus - may also be connected to problems with the brow chakra; problems of the upper digestive tract; mouth ulcers,


BLUE relates to the Throat Chakra. Associated organs to this chakra are the throat, lungs and the endocrine gland is the thyroid gland. The upper digestive tract can be affected by imbalance in this area. Blue relates to self expression. Speech, communication, the ability to communicate our needs and requirements.

Associated problems

Some associated problems relating to the throat chakra are: Thyroid problems - over active/ under-active; Anorexia nervosa this is a multi-chakra problem, but has a strong connection to the throat chakra; asthma; bronchitis; hearing problems; tinnitus - may also be connected to problems with the brow chakra; problems of the upper digestive tract; mouth ulcers, sore throats, tonsillitis.

Some Positive and negative aspects of the colour Blue

positive aspects of this colournegative aspects of this colour
loyalunfaithful
tactfuluntrustworthy
trustworthyself-righteous
peacefulcold

Using Blue in Colour Therapy

BLUE Calming, relaxing and healing. Not as sedating as indigo. Also the colour of communication. Can be used in any rooms except those used for physical activity or play.

Red can make you tense.






RED relates to the BASE chakra situated at the base of the spine


The organs to which this chakra relates are the kidneys and bladder .(The kidneys are formed within the pelvis and here they link with the base chakra energy, although prior to birth they rise to the position in the loins with which we are more familiar).


The vertebral column, hips and legs are also areas related to this chakra. The endocrine gland to which this colour relates is the adrenal gland.


On the psycho-spiritual level, this chakra relates to self awareness. That is to say our awareness of ourselves as human beings and our place on earth. It is the area of survival and relates to our basic human instincts of fight or flight. Red gives us courage and strength. The colour relates to stability and security.
Associated problems
Some problems associated with the base chakra are:- constipation, diarrhea, piles, colitis, Crohn's disease, cold fingers and toes, frequency of urination, hypertension (high blood pressure), kidney stones, impotence, problems with hips, legs and feet.

Some Positive and negative aspects of the colour Red

positive aspects of this colournegative aspects of this colour
CourageousFearful
Pioneering spiritFear of progress
Leadership qualitiesRuthless
Strong willedBrutal/ Aggressive
ConfidentDomineering
EnergeticResentful
DeterminedSelf pitying
SpontaneousObstinate
Quick tempered

Using Red in Colour Therapy

Red is the lowest of the seven colours in the visible spectrum and is known as a "warm" colour. It is stimulating and energising therefore it is helpful for tiredness and lethargy, to stimulate low blood pressure, to boost sluggish circulation. NB Red should not be used on anyone, with hypertension/high blood pressure since this colour increases blood flow. (That is to say as a colour treatment). Pink may be used instead in such cases.
Red, in its most positive sense, is the colour for courage, strength and pioneering spirit. However, in the most negative aspect, it is the colour of anger, violence and brutality and, interestingly, before world war two it was noted that a lot of red was being worn.
Using colours well in the home is a way of creating a balanced environment. Red is energising and excites the emotions, and can stimulate the appetite.(Often used in restaurants). It can be used in any activity area but red needs careful choice of tone and depth and the space in which it is to be used as it can make a space look smaller and can be claustrophobic or oppressive. However, used well, red and its variations, can make a space feel warm and cosy.

 What is colour?



Colour is simply light of different wavelengths and frequencies and light is just one form of energy that we can actually see that is made up from photons.

We are all surrounded by electromagnetic waves of energy of which colour is just a small part.
Colour Properties - the spectrum

Each colour has its own properties and unique wavelength and frequency.
The visible spectrum of colour as we see it, consists of seven main colours:
Visible Spectrum of Colours
We can see seven main colours of the Visible Spectrum
The retinas in our eyes though have three types of colour receptors in the form of cones. We can actually only detect three of these visible colours - red - blue and green. These colours are called additive primaries. It is these three colours that are mixed in our brain to create all of the other colours we see... how clever we are!
The wavelength and frequency of light we see, also influences the colour we see. The seven colours of the spectrum all have varying wavelengths and frequencies. Red is at the lower end of the spectrum and has a higher wavelength but lower frequency to that of Violet at the top end of the spectrum which has a lower wavelength and higher frequency.

?Where does colour come from?

Prism
Using a prism, we can 'extract' the colours from white light - ie. sunlight.
Colour simply comes from light. Sunlight of course is the main source that that we are all familiar with.

To physically see the colours from white light, we need to use a prism.

When light from the sun passes through a prism, the light is split into the seven visible colours by a process called 'refraction'.
Refraction is caused by the change in speed experienced by a wave of light when it changes medium.

Light energy

The amount of energy in a given light wave is proportionally related to its frequency, thus a high frequency light wave has a higher energy than that of a low frequency light wave.

Colour is made up of different Wavelengths and Frequencies

Each colour has its own particular wavelength and frequency. Each colour can be measured in units of cycles or waves per second.
If we can imagine light traveling in waves like that in an ocean, it is these waves that have the properties of wavelength and frequency. A wavelength is the distance between the same locations on adjacent waves. As an example; an ocean full of waves, that were 10 meters apart, could be said as, having awavelength of 10, whereas an ocean of waves that were 30 meters apart would be said as having a wavelength of 30.
The same applies to light. The colour RED has a wavelength of around 700 nanometers long - one wave spans only 7 ten millionths of a meter! Whereas, Violet has a much shorter wavelength, so each violet wave would span a much shorter distance.

Waves of Energy

Colour Wavelenghths
Within the Universe, positive and negative charges (waves of energy), are constantly vibrating and producing electromagnetic waves traveling at an incredibly high speed.(186,000 miles per second, the speed of light.)
Each of these waves has a different wavelength and speed of vibration. Together they form part of the electromagnetic spectrum.
Light travels in waves. A wavelength is the distance between the same locations on adjacent waves.

Frequency

Colour Frequencies
The frequency of a wave is determined by the number of complete waves, or wavelengths, that pass a given point each second.


The colour RED for example, has a frequency of around 430 trillion vibrations a second, whereas Violet has a much higher frequency, so each violet wave would pass a given point much quicker than the colour RED.


All light travels at the same speed but each colour has a different wavelength and frequency.

Frequency of waves

To try and explain the frequency of colour and light a little further, imagine that an ocean with waves that are 10 meters apart that crash on the shore every 5 seconds could be classed as having a frequency of 5, whereas an ocean of waves 10 meters apart that crashed on the shore every 10 seconds, would be classed as having a frequency of 10. The more frequent the waves, the HIGHER the frequency.
It is these different wavelengths and frequencies that cause the different colours of light to separate and become visible when passing through a prism. This can be looked upon in the same way that radio waves have different frequencies and wavelengths, certain stations can only be listened to at a particular frequency or wavelength. So the colour blue - say, can only be visible at a particular frequency and wavelength range.
The higher the frequency, of the colour, the closer together the waves of energy are.
Higher frequency colours are - violet - indigo - blue
lower frequency colours are - yellow - orange - red.
A high frequency light wave has a higher energy than that of a low frequency light wave.
Complementary colours


When placed next to each other, complementary colors tend to look balanced and are colors opposi to each other on the colour wheel

Colour Properties

Each colour has its own properties with its own wavelength and frequency.

Although white could be said to be a colour, it is generally not included in the scientific spectrum as it is in fact made up of all the colours of the spectrum, but it is often referred to being a colour.

Isaac Newton proved that white light is indeed made up of colours by passing natural sunlight through a glass prism which in result projected a rainbow of colours on a surface.

He then proceeded to use a second glass prism and combined the light from the first prism (which split the suns rays into sperate colours) to produce white light once again. Thus proving white light (ie the sun) contains colour.

The tables below show each colour and its relative property.

Key:

Frequency = Terahertz (one trillion cycles per second)
Wavelength = Nanometers
One meter equals 1,000,000,000 nanometers. One nanometer is about the length of ten atoms in a row
Complementary colour = the complementary colour associated with each colour
Figures shown here are approximate


Violet
VioletWavelength425 - 400 nm
Frequency700 - 790 thz
Complementary colourYellow
Indigo
IndigoWavelength450 - 425 nm
Frequency670 - 700 thz
Complementary colourOrange
Blue
BlueWavelength500 - 450 nm
Frequency670 - 600 thz
Complementary colourRed
Green
GreenWavelength570 - 500 nm
Frequency580 - 530 thz
Complementary colourRed
Yellow
YellowWavelength590 - 570 nm
Frequency530 - 510 thz
Complementary colourViolet
Orange
OrangeWavelength610 - 590 nm
Frequency510 - 480 thz
Complementary colourIndigo
Red
RedWavelength750 - 610 nm
Frequency480 - 405 thz
Complementary colourBlue

The Electromagnetic Spectrum

Visible light and colour makes up just a very small part of the Electromagnetic Spectrum.

To make it a little easier to understand about light and waves of energy, the electro magnetic spectrum provides an illustrated method of showing the types of electromagnetic radiation in terms of wavelenghth and frequncy, and how small a part visible light actually is in the whole spectrum.

Visible light energy is made up of many frequencies and wavelengths and falls between Infrared and Ultra violet.

The rest of the Electromagnetic spectrum is made up from many other waves and energy including radio Waves, microwaves, infrared waves, ultraviolet waves X-Rays and gamma rays.

Electromagnetic radiation itself can be described as being a stream of photons (massless particles) moving at the speed of light (186,000 miles per second) and traveling in a wave-like pattern. All electromagnetic radiation, consists of these photons each having its own energy.

Different forms of electromagnetic radiation have different amounts of energy. Radio waves for example have a less energy than microwaves. The reason for this is because the photons of radio waves, have a lower frequency or cycles per second - hertz ( htz for short) and therefore less energy.

Visible light is part of the electromagnetic spectrum

Like all electromagnetic radiation, light travels in waves. These waves are vibrations of electric and magnetic fields that pass through space.

In physics, the visible spectrum has three primary colours - Red, Green and Blue. Chemically, colour is derived from pigments and compounds and the three primary colours here are Red, Yellow and Blue. Any of these two colours will give a third colour - a secondary colour.

The sensory aspect of colour is visual and deals with the physiology and psychology. So here we see the two above systems in the perception of sight and there are then two combinations of three primary colours, i.e. Red, Yellow and Blue and Red, Blue and Green. All other colours are derived from these.
The diagram below, shows what a small part of the whole electromagnetic spectrum visible light actually forms.

Electromagnetic Spectrum diagram

Additive primary colours



Additive colour
Red Green and Blue light combined, produce white light.

Additive colours are colours that are associated with emitted light directly from a source before an object reflects the light. These colours are red, green and blue. These are the colours we are probably most familiar with in association with television, and computer displays.

The additive colour theory, was first described by James Clark Maxwell in the mid 1800s.When equal amounts of Red Green and Blue light are combined, they produce white light. By adding the colours together to produce white, we call these additive colours.
Red, green and blue are the "primary" colours of white light. The combination of all three of these colours will result in white. This is called Colour by addition and is direct way to prove that all of these three colours do indeed come from white light.

Understanding additive colours

A simple way to understand a little more about additive colours is to create some of your own using torches or 'flashlights' with coloured filters attached.
Additive colour
The three colour torches above show how when red green and blue are mixed, other colours are produced... including white!
This is called colour by addition.
You will need:
  • Three similar torches (preferably identical )
  • Light filters or similar to cover the torch heads
  • elastic bands (to hold the colour filters in place)
  • A white surface to shine your torches
Step 1.
Cover the front of each torch with a colour filter - one torch with a Blue light filter one with a Green light filter, and the other with a Red light filter. Use the elastic bands to hold them in place.
Step 2.
Arrange the torches so that the beams of light just overlap each other on the white surface. You may need to enroll a friend to help you do this! You could also use three photographic tripods if you access to them... and tape the torches to them.
For the best results, use a white wall or surface to shine the torches on. The effect is also best achieved in a dark room.
Step 3.
If you have the torches arranged correctly, the result is that in the middle of the three light beams, the area is white. It may take a while to arranged the torches correctly, but once they are, you should see that in the middle where all three colours meet the are is white.
You will also see other colours that have been produced. These should be Magenta, Yellow, and Cyan (another bluish colour) These are called secondary colours.

Secondary colours

If two of the primary colors are mixed together, a secondary colour is created. As more colors are mixed, the selection of colors grows.

Additive secondary Colours

Additive Secondary Colours
When two additive primary colours are mixed, a secondary colour is produced. In this case it is either Cyan, Magenta or Yellow.
Secondary additive colours are produced by mixing two other additive primary colours together.
The additive primary colours are Red, Green and Blue.
When these additive colours are mixed, they produce three other secondary colours. These are:
  • Cyan
  • Magenta
  • Yellow
If then these secondary colours are mixed, they produce what are called 'Tertiary Colours'
We use subtractive primary colours when we are mixing paints or inks. In the case of inks and printing, the colours used are Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and black. (CMYK for short)

Subtractive secondary Colours

Subtractive Secondary Colours
When two subtractive primary colours are mixed, a secondary colour is produced. In this case it is either Violet/purple, Orange or Green.
Secondary subtractive colours are produced by mixing two other subtractive primary colours together.
The additive primary colours are Red, Green and Blue.
When these subtractive colours are mixed, they produce three other secondary colours. These are:
  • Violet/purple
  • Orange
  • green
If then these secondary colours are mixed, they produce what are called 'Tertiary Colours'

Tertiary colours

Tertiary colors are combinations of primary and secondary colours.

There are six tertiary colors; red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, blue-violet, and red-violet.
An easy way to remember these names is to place the primary name before the other colour. So, the tertiary colour produced when mixing the primary colour blue with the secondary colour green, is called 'blue-green'.
Tertiary Colours
Tertiary colours are combinations of primary and secondary colours

Complementary Colors

When placed next to each other, complementary colors tend to look balanced and are colors opposite to each other on the color wheel also, when placed next to each other they appear to become brighter.
They are also used together in Colour Therapy to give balance. We need the balance of the electric/cool colours and the magnetic/warm colours for our wellbeing and smooth functioning of our bodies.
Complementary colours are opposite each other on the colour wheel,

ColorComplementary ColorResult
Violet
Violet
Yellow
Yellow
Violet and Yellow
Violet / Yellow
Indigo
Indigo
Orange
Orange
Indigo and Orange
Indigo / Orange
Blue
Blue
Red
Red
Red and Blue
Red / Blue
Green
Green
Magenta
Magenta
Green and Magenta
Green / Magenta
Yellow
Yellow
Violet
Violet
Yellow and Violet
Yellow / Violet
Orange
Orange
Indigo
Indigo
Orange and Indigo
Orange / Indigo
Red
Red
Blue
Blue
Red and Blue
Red / Blue
Magenta
Magenta
Green
Green
Magenta and Green
Magenta / Green
Magenta is the eighth color and is not part of the visible spectrum, but is a combination of red and violet, thus combining the energies of those two colors. That is to say, that magenta helps us to use our earthly experience and grounding together with intense spiritual awareness. It can help to release past conditioning and help us to move forward.

Magnetic and Electric Colours

In Colour Therapy, Red, Orange, and Yellow are referred to as magnetic/warm colours - Blue, Indigo and Violet are referred to as electric/cool colours.
Generally speaking, the three higher colours are calming, and the three lower colours are stimulating and green is the balance between the two types of energy.

Colours and Frequencies

Magnetic and Electric Colours
In terms of Colour Therapy, the shortest wavelength colours - are described as being cool electric colours and the lowest wavelength colours - are described as being warm magnetic colours.
The diagram on the right, shows the seven rainbow colours in order of their frequency.
Violet is at the top of the column since it has the shortest wavelength and the highest frequency.
Red at the base with the longest wavelength and lowest frequency.
All seven colours of the spectrum can be seen by passing light through a prism. The three 'higher' colours of - Violet, Indigo and Blue are in Colour Therapy Terms called the cool / electric colours and generally indicate calm/and coolness.
The three ' lower ' colours of Yellow, Orange and Red are in Colour Therapy Terms called the warm / magnetic colours and generally these are warming and activating colours. The colour Green is the balance between the cool and warm rays.

Colour Perception - How we see Colour The way in which most of us actually see colour, is through the sensors in the retina of our eyes called rods and cones. The rods are sensitive to low light and the cones, which require a greater intensity of light, are sensitive to colour. 

The message is passed to the optic nerve and then on to the brain. We see colour because of the Rods and Cones in our eyes 

There are about 120 million rods and about 6 to 7 million cones, in the human eye. Rods are more sensitive than the cones but they are not sensitive to colour, they perceive images as black, white and different shades of grey. 

More than one thousand times as sensitive, the rods respond better to blue but very little to red light. Each cone contains one of three pigments sensitive to either RED GREEN or BLUE. 

Each pigment absorbs a particular wavelength of colour. There are short wavelength cones that absorb blue light, middle wavelength cones that absorb green light, and long wavelength cones that absorb red light. 
The eye picks up colour and light by the Rods and Cones in the eye. It is the Cones that detect Colour. Each cone contains one of three pigments sensitive to either RED GREEN or BLUE. 
When we observe a colour that has a wavelength between that of the primary colours red, green and blue, combinations of the cones are stimulated. An example could be that yellow light stimulates cones that are sensitive to red and to green light. The result is that we can detect light of all colours in the visible spectrum. People who suffer colour blindness have less numbers of particular cones than normal, so they get colours confused. If we lose our eye sight, the body adapts and receives colour rays through the skin. It takes time for the body to adapt, but it has been shown that people who are blind, can differentiate between di


Colour Blindness


Colour blindness is an inaccurate term for a lack of perceptual sensitivity to certain colors. Absolute colour blindness is almost unknown, but in very rare cases, total colour blindness occurs. Colour blindness can happen in one of two ways:


Typical: Complete inability to discriminate between any colour variations, which is usually associated with other severe vision impairments.




Atypical: The ability to only see very clear colours.


Affecting around 7% of men and around 0.04% women, the main form of colour blindness is the inability to distinguish red from green. This means that people affected do not see the colours red and green the same way as others. The cause of this is due to the red or green photoreceptors working incorrectly.


Rods and Cones


Our eyes contain what are called rods and cones. It is these rods and cones that give us the ability to see colour.


The rods deal with brightness and the cones with colour. There are three different types of cones: red cones - green cones and blue cones. People that are effected by colour blindness, have less numbers of particular cones than normal, so they get colours confused. They may be able to see a bright green coloured object out side, but when viewed in artificial light, the same object may appear brown in colour. Or if the object was a dull green, it could even appear red. Take a look at the images below.


People with normal colour vision and those with all colour vision deficiencies should read the number.

People with normal colour vision should see the number 8. Those with red-green colour vision deficiencies should see the number 3. Total colour blindness should not be able to read any numeral.differents .

Why are things the colour they are

Everything we can see has a colour.

Around us, in our homes, at work, in nature, in space - it is universal, everywhere has a colour, of some sort. But have you ever thought about what makes something the colour it is?

The colour of anything we observe depends upon a few factors. Firstly -Everything is made up of electrons and atoms.

How something will look when bathed in light, is governed by these atoms and electrons. Different materials, objects and items have a different make up of atoms and electrons. Any object, by its nature, will, when exposed to light, do one of the following: 
  • reflect or scatter light (reflection and scattering)
  • absorb light (absorption)
  • do nothing (transmission)
  • refract light (refraction)
Reflection and scattering

Reflection and Scattering of light

Reflected and scattered light
A lot of objects reflect light to some degree, but something that is particularly reflective, has more free electrons that are able to pass from atom to atom with ease.
The light energy that is absorbed by these electrons, is not passed onto to any other atoms. Instead the electrons vibrate and the light energy is sent out of the material at the same frequency as the original light coming in.

Absorbtion


Absorbed light
Absorbed light

When something appears to have no reflection or is opaque, then the incoming light source frequency is the same as, or very close to, the vibration frequency of the electrons in the given material.

The electrons of the material absorb the energy of the light source, and because the light is absorbed, the material or object appears opaque - it has very little or no reflection.

Transmission


Transmitted light
Transmitted light

This occurs when the energy of the incoming light is either much lower or much higher than the energy or frequency required to make the electrons in the particular material vibrate.

Because of this the electrons in an object that appears to be transparent, instead of capturing the light energy, they let the light wave pass through the object/material unchanged, thus the object/material is transparent to that frequency of light.

Refraction


Refracted light
A glass without and with water showing how light is refracted through water

If you have ever put a straw in a drink, then you may have noticed that the straw appears to be bent under the water.The reason for this is Refraction.

If the energy of the incoming light is the same as the vibration frequency of the electrons in the material, the light is able to go deep into the material, and causes small vibrations in the electrons. These vibrations are passed on to the atoms by the electrons, and in turn they send out light waves at the same frequency as the incoming light. Although this happens extremely quickly, some of the light that is inside of the material slows down, but the frequency of the light outside the material stays the same. The result of this is the light inside the material is bent. The angle of the distortion (refraction) depends upon how much the material is able to slow down the light, in this case as in the image above... water.

An example as to why natural objects are coloured


Example of reflected light
A ripe tomato is a good example of reflective light (the shiny bit) and Absorbed light (the red colour)

A good example as to why things have colour is, in the image here of ripe tomatoes.
Tomatoes appear to be Red because when ripe, tomatoes contain a carotenoid known as "Lycopene".
Lycopene is a bright red carotenoid pigment, a phytochemical found not only in tomatoes but also other red fruits.
Lycopene absorbs most of the visible light spectrum, and being red in colour, Lycopene reflects mainly red back to the viewer, thus a ripe tomato appears to be Red.

Conclusion

There are many reasons why things are the colour they are, but mainly it is due to the absorption and the scattering properties of the material being different from that of the incoming wavelengths of the light that illuminate it.
As a further example: we see green leaves or grass as being green because leaves and grass (and other green plants) use Chlorophyll to change light into energy.
Because of its nature and chemical makeup, Chlorophyll absorbs the blue and red colours of the spectrum and reflects the green. The green is reflected back out to the viewer making the grass and leaves appear green.
Following on briefly to how we see colour... the rods and cones of the eye pick up on the particular wavelength and frequency of green and send the message to the brain. Similarly a ripe tomato is red because it reflects rays from the red end of the spectrum and absorbs rays from the blue end.
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