“Blue is the only color which maintains its own character in all its tones…it will always stay blue; whereas yellow is blackened in its shades, and fades away when lightened; red when darkened becomes brown, and diluted with white is no longer red, but another color – pink.”  — Raoul Dufy

Day 339 of 366 Blog Challenge 2012

Hello all

Late yesterday I was talking to one of my neighbours who suggested that I might want to write a blog about The Colour Blue.  He began to quote phrases like “feeling blue” and “out of the blue.” Well Gavin, thank you for this suggestion because I have discovered that you are indeed right, blue is right up there for interest with red and white.

The Colour Blue is a fascinating colour to research. So folks, today I bring to you: THE COLOUR BLUE in all its shades and harmonies. And BLUE answered me and said “thank you very much indeed Madame for noticing me!”

I discovered that Blue is described as a favorite color by many people and is the color most preferred by men (surprise surprise!) Also Blue calls to mind feelings of calmness or serenity. It is often described as peaceful, tranquil, secure, and orderly.

I relate to this because … when we moved into our brand new home 37 years ago (1975) we decorated our living area with all different shades of blue using various textures and shades of blue including the wallpaper and carpet.

Serene blue seas

Serene blue seas

When people visited our home they would say: “Wow! This is great, it really works!” and then they would add “there is such a feeling of peace when you enter.”

Over the years, we stripped the wallpaper and painted the walls a medium shade of blue. In a third update, we modernised by only having a deep blue feature wall, we got rid of the carpet and installed wooden floating floors with orange highlights here and there.

We still get the same comments from people about our house! However, be that as it may, not all blues produce calmness and serenity it seems. Take this quote from www.sensationalcolor.com/all-about-the-color-blue:

“The color of ocean and sky, blue is perceived as a constant in our lives. As the collective color of the spirit, it invokes rest and can cause the body to produce chemicals that are calming. However, not all blues are serene and sedate. Electric or brilliant blues become dynamic and dramatic — an engaging color that expresses exhilaration. Some shades or the overuse of blue may come across as cold or uncaring.”

But, there is more to blue than feelings, what about the use of the word BLUE in our language? You will all recognise some of these phrases:

  • Out of the blue: unexpected
    • True blue: to be loyal or faithful
    • Once in a blue moon: an event that occurs infrequently
    • Blue ribbon: first place; to describe something as being of the highest quality
    • Blue blood: an aristocrat
    • Blue comedy: jokes about socially taboo subjects
    • Blueprint: a detailed design of an object or idea
    • Feeling blue: to feel sad or unhappy
Yuk! Blue jellybeans

Yuk! Blue jellybeans

But what about food? The colour BLUE is the least common color in the foods we eat, possibly blueberries are one of the only blue foods. For a long time I have been unable to tolerate eating blue jelly beans or blue Smarties since manufacturers added blue lollies.

Now I understand it all! I found out that the colour blue is the least appetizing of all colours and dieters are recommended to eat their food off a blue plate! But there is another reason for my repulsion:

Humans are geared to avoid foods that are poisonous and blue coloring in food is often a sign of spoilage or poison.”

No wonder I am unable to eat blue lollies! I actually thought it was a psychological problem of some kind but it turns out I am being intuitive. Thank you Blue for protecting me.

Now here are a few other titbits that you have always wanted to know about BLUE:

  • Owls are the only birds that can see the color blue. I did not know this.
  • Also, over the past decade, scientists have reported the successful use of blue light in the treatment of a wide variety of psychological problems, including addictions, eating disorders, impotence, and depression.
  • It has been found that people are often more productive in blue rooms.
  • And here is one that is interesting: the highest quality ultramarine blue is made with powdered lapis lazuli from Afghanistan. I wonder if our troops are gathering it as we speak?

And I haven’t even got started on all the songs that contain themes of BLUE! Irving Berlin wrote the classic “Blue skies, smiling at me; nothing but blue skies …” We all know this one but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the Australian ballad made famous by John Williamson called “True Blue.” My overseas readers may want to listen to John singing it here: www.youtube.com/watch

It began life as an ad that never went to air. Today ‘True Blue’ is Australia’s unofficial national anthem and at times is sung by the Australian Cricket Team and it also featured at Steve Irwin’s memorial service because it summed him up so well.

One of Raoul's blue paintings

One of Raoul’s blue paintings

To conclude let me give you a snippet about Raoul Dufy who wrote the quote about BLUE at the start of my blog: ” Blue is the only color that maintains its own character in all its tones…it will always stay blue.”  His joy, optimism and an irrepressible love of life filled his paintings. From France, Dufy (1877 – 1953) studied at Paris’ Ecole des Beaux-Arts.

“He later painted regattas, horse races and other pleasurable pastimes in buoyant colors topped with rapid, calligraphic brushstrokes that suggested a sense of movement. Profoundly artistic, Dufy also created book illustrations, fabrics, ceramics, tapestries, stage sets and murals. Dufy produced a remarkable 2,000 paintings, 2,000 watercolors and almost 1,000 drawings during his lifetime.”

Another amazing man (see yesterday’s post). So folks, just remember “when you’re feeling blue” think of Raoul Dufy who loved painting in blue and kept his wonderful zest for life in everything that he did. Perhaps the secret is to do something you love doing just as Raoul did …

Enjoy these blue pictures:

a mosaic detail from Gaudi’s Parc Guell in Barcelona.)

a mosaic detail from Gaudi’s Parc Guell in Barcelona.

How many blue things here?!

How many blue things here?!

True Blue Aussies on Australia Day

True Blue Aussies on Australia Day

blue moon

The moon is not really blue – it is just a saying because of the two moons

The movie Avatar

The movie Avatar

Something blue: We can’t see it, but a blue ribbon is sewn into the interior of Kate Middleton's wedding her dress.

Something blue: We couldn’t see it, but a blue ribbon was sewn into the interior of Kate Middleton’s wedding dress.