Use Of Colour Research: You Can Run But You Can’t Bride!

In order to make something a visually striking contrast is by using opposite colours. Opposite colour pairs like this are also known as “complementary” colors and lie on directly opposite sides of the colour wheel. When these colours are side by side or close together in an image they produce greater contrast than either would if hey were put with any other color. This theory becomes very important when attempting to create an image that captures the attention of a viewer.


“Unlike other pairs of complementary colors, fiery orange and cool blue are strongly associated with opposing concepts — fire and ice, earth and sky, land and sea, day and night, invested humanism vs. elegant indifference, good old fashioned explosions vs. futuristic science stuff. It’s a trope because it’s used on purpose, and it does something.”

Although the orange and blue is sometimes slammed as a overused colour palette within the the photographic and film mediums, I feel as though it can be applied effectively in my image. I plan to use orange shades on the left hand side of the screen to help show the fury and rage of the arms that are reaching to the girl in the center of the screen. Then from the right side of the screen I will have dark blue colour tones to help to visually portray the depression associated with the groom in the image. Both these colours with meet quite sharply in the middle where the child bride will be and this will help to show that she is in the center of a conflict. It also may help to convey the idea that in her given situation, the arms and the old groom represent her only two choices and by way of visual comparison, the latter seems the lesser of the two evils.

By using a desaturated version of a cold colour like blue and a more saturated version of a hot colour like red, my image can remain visually striking whilst also helping to convey a sombre tone. Hot and cold colours are deeply coded in humans minds as being associated with certain emotions. From my research I found that certain desaturated shades of blue are associated with depression and brighter shades of red are associated with rage. Although nuances within the use of these colours may be culturally bound, the overall emtotion tied to these colours is fairly universal and the view of the colours is held by my target audience which is very important.


The above image is a good representation of the colour tone and palette i am planning on using.



  1. Awesome choice of colour palette! Use it anyway even though it’s used quite a lot in photography; it conveys the contrast between the child bride’s two options in life better than any other colour combination. Interesting to see that this time it’s the blue that will be desaturated rather than the orange, because usually it’s the other way around since orange is typically a “louder” colour.

    For the orange part of your image, with the hands grabbing out to reach her, maybe have a darker shade of orange to symbolize the “darkness” of the war-torn area where the brides come from? That way it contrasts with the “light” colours of the groom’s side of the image, how the brides thought that marriage would take them away from the struggles they used to live with, only to throw them into brand new ones?


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