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How much does color really affect us?

From influencing decisions to eliciting taste, creatives use color to design the world around us

This advertising content was produced in collaboration between Vox Creative and our sponsor, without involvement from Vox Media editorial staff.

Does orange really make people hungry? Is purple always a sign of royalty?

Turns out, our feelings towards specific colors are actually more personal, rather than universal. For example, the color white is typically associated with innocence in western cultures, but for eastern countries is a symbol of mourning and is worn to funerals.

However, while perception of a single instance of color can be very subjective, color psychology shows that the way colors are used as a whole greatly affects human behavior.

For example, color can account for 90% of an initial snap judgment and this judgment can be formed in as little as 90 seconds. This first moment is pivotal seeing as over 80% of consumers in a study noted color as being the main reason they buy specific products. So it’s clear that selecting the right color is critical to getting the best results. That’s why the Dell Precision 5560 mobile workstation features a 100% Adobe RGB screen, equipping creatives with a full range of colors to optimally design for both the digital and physical world.

While the color of a product alone can sway a person either way, what about when that product is grouped with items of a different color? Here, a psychological concept known as the Von Restorff Effect unfolds. Hedwig von Restorff, a German psychiatrist and pediatrician, held a study in 1933 that revealed when participants were presented with a group of similar items alongside one that was different, it was the unrelated item that people remembered the most. Many designers utilize this concept to catalyze emphasis and to create content that stands out from the rest. With the Dell Precision 5560 mobile workstation, creatives can benefit from a screen with UHD+ resolution giving them the capability to see incredibly fine and differing details.

Designers use scale, placement, and motion to focus intensity. But it’s the actual use of color that can really attract a viewer’s attention. When participants of a study were presented with advertisements that were both in color and black and white, it was the ads in color that held the most attraction.

This type of attraction is also used when it comes to food. One study found that color is the most outstanding sensory cue when it comes to our expectation of taste. This reaction is tied to one of our natural instincts, which is to associate brightly colored foods with freshness and better taste. To help with creating attraction to certain foods, we’ve been naturally coloring foods since at least 400 BC. So that’s why ancient Egyptians were using wine to color their candy!

Color is all a part of what makes a successful first impression, whether it’s the color of a food or a product. Creatives use color to communicate information, flavor, significance, and ideas. Having an industry leading display is crucial to making the most effective work possible. With the Dell Precision 5560 mobile workstation, creatives have access to color-accurate UHD+ 3840x2400 resolution display and PremierColor software, giving them the power to produce a precise representation of their work. Whether you’re a graphic designer, video editor, animator, architect, game designer, photo editor, or web designer, seeing accurate color is one of the most essential instruments to creation.

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