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Aesthetic response to color combinations: preference, harmony, and similarity.

Schloss KB, Palmer SE - Atten Percept Psychophys (2011)

Bottom Line: For example, some claim that harmony increases with hue similarity, whereas others claim that it decreases.Although pairs with highly contrastive hues are generally judged to be neither preferable nor harmonious, figural color preference ratings increase as hue contrast with the background increases.The present results thus refine and clarify some of the best-known and most contentious claims of color theorists.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-1650, USA. kschloss@berkeley.edu

ABSTRACT
Previous studies of preference for and harmony of color combinations have produced confusing results. For example, some claim that harmony increases with hue similarity, whereas others claim that it decreases. We argue that such confusions are resolved by distinguishing among three types of judgments about color pairs: (1) preference for the pair as a whole, (2) harmony of the pair as a whole, and (3) preference for its figural color when viewed against its colored background. Empirical support for this distinction shows that pair preference and harmony both increase as hue similarity increases, but preference relies more strongly on component color preference and lightness contrast. Although pairs with highly contrastive hues are generally judged to be neither preferable nor harmonious, figural color preference ratings increase as hue contrast with the background increases. The present results thus refine and clarify some of the best-known and most contentious claims of color theorists.

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Similarity ratings of color pairs for each left region cut (separate lines), as a function of right region cut (x-axis). Data points for the saturated figure cut (open symbols) are plotted separately at the same x-axis point as the muted colors because they share similar lightness levels but slightly offset for clarity. Error bars standard errors of the means (SEM)
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Fig11: Similarity ratings of color pairs for each left region cut (separate lines), as a function of right region cut (x-axis). Data points for the saturated figure cut (open symbols) are plotted separately at the same x-axis point as the muted colors because they share similar lightness levels but slightly offset for clarity. Error bars standard errors of the means (SEM)

Mentions: Similarity ratings were also analyzed in terms of cut (saturation/lightness level). As shown in Fig. 11, there was a man effect of figure cut [F(3, 141) = 52.13, p < .001)] ground cut [F(3, 141) = 66.56, p < .001], and a strong interaction between them [F(9, 423) = 46.40, p < .001]. Not surprisingly, pairs containing colors with more similar lightness values were rated as more similar. For example, dark colors were judged more similar to other dark colors than to muted colors [t(47) = 4.53, p < .002]. This pattern of results is different from color harmony ratings (Fig. 7), in which colors that generally contained lighter colors were more harmonious (e.g., dark colors were judged more harmonious with muted colors than with other dark colors [t(47) = 4.26, p < .002]. These data are plotted as a function of hue difference in Supplementary Material Fig. S4, which shows that, as for pair preference and pair harmony, similarity decreased as hue differences increased for all combinations of cuts. Further analyses of the interaction between figure and ground cut as a function of hue difference between the two regions can be found in the Supplementary Material (Fig. S5).Fig. 11


Aesthetic response to color combinations: preference, harmony, and similarity.

Schloss KB, Palmer SE - Atten Percept Psychophys (2011)

Similarity ratings of color pairs for each left region cut (separate lines), as a function of right region cut (x-axis). Data points for the saturated figure cut (open symbols) are plotted separately at the same x-axis point as the muted colors because they share similar lightness levels but slightly offset for clarity. Error bars standard errors of the means (SEM)
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3037488&req=5

Fig11: Similarity ratings of color pairs for each left region cut (separate lines), as a function of right region cut (x-axis). Data points for the saturated figure cut (open symbols) are plotted separately at the same x-axis point as the muted colors because they share similar lightness levels but slightly offset for clarity. Error bars standard errors of the means (SEM)
Mentions: Similarity ratings were also analyzed in terms of cut (saturation/lightness level). As shown in Fig. 11, there was a man effect of figure cut [F(3, 141) = 52.13, p < .001)] ground cut [F(3, 141) = 66.56, p < .001], and a strong interaction between them [F(9, 423) = 46.40, p < .001]. Not surprisingly, pairs containing colors with more similar lightness values were rated as more similar. For example, dark colors were judged more similar to other dark colors than to muted colors [t(47) = 4.53, p < .002]. This pattern of results is different from color harmony ratings (Fig. 7), in which colors that generally contained lighter colors were more harmonious (e.g., dark colors were judged more harmonious with muted colors than with other dark colors [t(47) = 4.26, p < .002]. These data are plotted as a function of hue difference in Supplementary Material Fig. S4, which shows that, as for pair preference and pair harmony, similarity decreased as hue differences increased for all combinations of cuts. Further analyses of the interaction between figure and ground cut as a function of hue difference between the two regions can be found in the Supplementary Material (Fig. S5).Fig. 11

Bottom Line: For example, some claim that harmony increases with hue similarity, whereas others claim that it decreases.Although pairs with highly contrastive hues are generally judged to be neither preferable nor harmonious, figural color preference ratings increase as hue contrast with the background increases.The present results thus refine and clarify some of the best-known and most contentious claims of color theorists.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-1650, USA. kschloss@berkeley.edu

ABSTRACT
Previous studies of preference for and harmony of color combinations have produced confusing results. For example, some claim that harmony increases with hue similarity, whereas others claim that it decreases. We argue that such confusions are resolved by distinguishing among three types of judgments about color pairs: (1) preference for the pair as a whole, (2) harmony of the pair as a whole, and (3) preference for its figural color when viewed against its colored background. Empirical support for this distinction shows that pair preference and harmony both increase as hue similarity increases, but preference relies more strongly on component color preference and lightness contrast. Although pairs with highly contrastive hues are generally judged to be neither preferable nor harmonious, figural color preference ratings increase as hue contrast with the background increases. The present results thus refine and clarify some of the best-known and most contentious claims of color theorists.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus