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This article is from June 6, 2013, and is no longer current.

The Psychology of Color


When you’re selecting colors for a project do you always consider the emotional impact of the hues you use? Many colors have strong ties to human emotions. Some assocations are obvious. We probably all know that green evokes ideas of freshness, renewal, and health, white is purity, and red means passion (whether love or hate). But would you be able to name the most child-like color off the top of your head? Here’s a hint.


The folks at Carey Joliffe, a full-service design boutique in Denver have put together a very handy (and free) chart called The Psychology of Color. It lists nearly 50 PMS colors with positive associations for each, and negative associations in some cases as well.

The Psychology of Color


Also worth checking out is a related infographic at the marketing blog Kissmetrics, How Do Colors Affect Purchases?

How Color Affects Purchases

Thanks: Muller Design Studio


Editor in Chief of CreativePro. Instructor at LinkedIn Learning with courses on InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, GIMP, Inkscape, and Affinity Publisher.
  • Chris McDonough says:

    Of course, remember this color chart is USA-centric as many colors have different meanings in different countries.

  • Mike Rankin says:

    Good point, Chris.

  • woe says:

    What in Heck would it mean if my favorite color was UPS Brown?

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