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The Daily Tar Heel

Editorial: Out with the old and in with the hue

Ackland Art Museum provides access to the arts for UNC students, pictured here on Feb. 7, 2023.

You don't need to be an art major to see the lack of color on our campus. The warm ivory walls of the dormitory, the grayish walls of the lecture rooms, the plain oak doors. There's no fuchsia nor is there any deviation from the general color palette that we see in every academic building. 

The driving factor that brings vibrancy to our campus is the people. Color is expressive. It reflects the person who's wearing it or the room we are standing in. Color forces us to be present in the moment and aware of our environment. Then, shouldn’t we as individuals, add more color to our campus? 

People normally have an emotional relationship with different hues. Red for passion, pink for love, yellow for joy and black for sadness. Having emotional responses to colors is an experience shared by many and has been extensively researched by many psychologists.

While we can never fear that color is going to disappear from our world, it does impact several factors in our lives. Color is something we take for granted, yet its presence changes our emotions, perception and ability to communicate and understand each other. Since the way our surroundings look affects us in so many ways, it's important that we do more to analyze what having a larger color palette can do for you.

What if you have colorblindness? There are many resources that make color palettes more accessible. IBM’s Design Language has multiple colors that are not only accessible but also have specific color palettes coordinating with different types of colorblindness. Furthermore, there are plenty of guidelines that help with design applications to create user-friendly interface design.

One of the best ways to have more color in your living spaces is to adorn them with colorful objects. Decorate with bright and bold furniture, art or decor. A lava lamp, stuffed animals and tie-dyed bed sheets are all fun ways to decorate. 

Hobbies such as painting, drawing or crafting are excellent ways to add new forms of art and expression. You can use many pigments to create and express yourself. The Morrison Art Studio and Ackland Art Museum are excellent ways to see and experience lots of different forms of the arts. 

Wearing colorful clothing can be another way to add color to every day. Experiment with flamboyant outfits. Try on those red jeans. Show off those glitter shoes. Pick items that reflect your style and even step out of your comfort zone. Student-Made UNC has lots of wonderful jewelry you can add to spice up any outfit.

Trying new foods is also an excellent way to bring not only new colors but also new experiences. Experiment with vibrant and colorful food options to add fresh hues to your plate.

Lastly, surround yourself with people who bring positivity, happiness and a “pop of color” to your life. 

Color is a powerful communication tool and can be used to signal action, boost mood and even influence physiological reactions — so why not add more? 


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