The Colors of Woodblock Painting

The Colors of Woodblock Painting


Called "pictures of the floating world," or Ukiyo-e, the main artistic genre of Japanese Woodblock printing first reached popularity during the second half of the 17th Century, and lasted into the 20th Century. Although initially challenged by limited colour, woodblock printing soon become a defining method of producing art. Capturing landscapes, theatre, and even more intimate scenes, Ukiyo-e captured hearts and tastes as well, as they could be inexpensively mass-produced. Traditional Japanese art usually relied on high contrast and a flattening of the dimensions in the piece.

For more on how the art is created: Diary of Carving Woodblocks

the great wave off kanagawa by katsushika hokusai

Perhaps most famously in this genre -- and still produced today -- is that of Katsushika Hokusai's work The Great Wave Off Kanagawa(above), part off his series One-hundred Views of Mt. Fuji, wherein Mt. Fuji is but a hill in the shadow of the tsunami. The wave seemed to reach out for the people desperately clinging to boats with claws, as if the size and arc weren't enough to suggest its ferocity. This piece, though one of the more popular ones, is marked as the one that is the least Japanese in technique of his works.

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The 7 Wonders of the Food Coloring World

The 7 Wonders of the Food Coloring World


In the process of making food or drink, especially mass-produced by machine, the accuracy of the end product's can be a bit skewed. Because certain colors are associated with certain flavors, and vice versa, food coloring was introduced in acknowledgment to its correlation to perceived flavors. Coloring has also been added to mask color loss, aid food identification, and for decoration, as in cake icing. Food Coloring even existed in the times of early Rome, when saffron, carrots, pomegranates, grapes, mulberries, spinach, beets, parsley, and flowers were employed as dyeing agents.

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And the Emmy Award Goes to… Color!

And the Emmy Award Goes to… Color!


The festivities began outside the 59th Annual Emmy Awards Sunday night with the photographers, stylist and critics checking out who was wearing who and what styles were in... A hot trend this year was vibrant color. Vivid hues of Fuscia, Electric-Blue, Deep Navy, Canary Yellow, Royal Purple, Crimson... (Elegant whites were there too)

Kate Walsh & Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Emmys Colors
Photos by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Minnie Driver & America Ferrera

Emmys Colors
Photos by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Katherine Heigl & Christina Aguilera

Emmys Colors
Photos by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Marcia Cross - Beautiful Natural Colors

Emmys Colors
I personally thought Marica Cross looked amazing. The turquoise accent color she wore in her earrings and bracelet really worked well with the rest of her natural palette. Her red hair looked gorgeous with her skin tone and the light colored dress worked well to let the natural elements shine. No spray tans or glitzy jewels needed here... just a beautiful woman well accented by light and natural colors.
 

For More Emmy Red Carpet Pictures:

Style.com
E Online
Fashion.About

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An Entire Alphabet of Scarlet Letters

An Entire Alphabet of Scarlet Letters


Is it preposterous to wonder whether letters of the alphabet have an inherent color?  As I conduct ongoing research for One-Letter Words: A Dictionary, I can’t help but ask myself why it is that letters are so often described as having a rosy hue.  Most readers will recall the infamous red “A” of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s classic novel, but as Steven Heller pointed out, “The Scarlet Letter is not the only scarlet letter” (The Education of an Illustrator).  Nor are scarlet letters solely brands of shame, sin, or doom.  A “red letter day” is a holiday, or at least a memorable or happy day (the phrase likely dating from 1549, when Saint’s days were marked in red in the Book of Common Prayer).  Can there be a natural wavelength that writers instinctively pick up on?  Virginia Woolf’s eyes seemed keen enough to detect infrared all the way to Z: “After Q there are a number of letters the last of which is scarcely visible to mortal eyes, but glimmers red in the distance” (To the Lighthouse).

Biblical allusions associate the color scarlet with sins of the body, and by coloring their letters red, authors seem to flesh them out and add a spark of life.  Take, for example, this description by Brian Moynahan: “[W]hen I came to read [the psalms], they seemed written in letters of fire or of scarlet” (The Faith: A History of Christianity).  Nathaniel Hawthorne also mentioned a burning quality to his scarlet letter: “[Placing it to my breast,] I experienced a sensation not altogether physical, yet almost so, as of burning heat; and as if the letter were not of red cloth, but red-hot iron” (The Scarlet Letter).  Sparkling red letters can even burn the imagination: “In my head a scarlet letter blazed,” says Betty Fussell (My Kitchen Wars).  Whether or not the context involves physical branding with a red-hot iron (examples would be rather too gruesome for inclusion here), blood imagery often figures in. As John Lawton wrote, “She rubbed the [handkerchief’s embroidered] scarlet letter between finger and thumb, felt the crispness of dried blood” (Bluffing Mr. Churchill).  George C. Chesbro dramatically combines both blood and fire imagery in his depiction of an alphabet volcano “spewing what appeared to be incomplete, fractured sentences and clustered gobs of words that were half submerged in a river of blood red lava” (The Language of Cannibals).  And consider this more serene example by poet Madeline Defrees, who seems to agree that scarlet letters are written by nature herself and in turn read by nature as well: “And who, / when scarlet letters / flutter in air from sumac and maple, / will be there to / receive them? Only a sigh / on the wind in the land of bending willow” (“Almanac,” Blue Dusk: New and Selected Poems, 1951-2001).

Most often, scarlet letters have a dazzling quality which you can’t help but notice.  Here’s one example by Wilkie Collins: “[B]elow the small print appeared a perfect galaxy of fancifully shaped scarlet letters, which fascinated all eyes” (Hide and Seek).  Groucho Marx recalled being fascinated by similar red letters: “In large, scarlet letters [the handbills] said, ‘Would you like to communicate with your loved ones even though they are no longer in the flesh?’” (Memoirs of a Mangy Lover).  It is as if the letters of Groucho’s handbill had a rosy flesh of their own, and enough charge to bridge the gap between the living and the dead.  Here’s another example of a dazzling red letter, by Ian Rankin: “There was a big letter X marking the spot [for a parachute jump].  It was made from two lengths of shiny red material, weighted down with stones” (Resurrection Men: An Inspector Rebus Novel).  Michael McCollum sums up nicely the impact of scarlet letters: “The [comet collision] display froze, save for a single blinking word etched in scarlet letters: Impact!” (Thunderstrike!) Red letters have impact, alright!

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Color Meets Culinary Functionality

Color Meets Culinary Functionality


Since colour came home in the 1950s with the vibrance developed during the industry boom and chemical advances following the second World War, kitchens and colour have seemingly been at war with each other. The psychedelic art of the 1960s met the mustard and moss colours of the 1970s, and they both hated each other. But now, in a time less frightened and simultaneously less eager, colour is safely being brought home, and to wherever possible.

Blown Glass artist Annie Michaud is bringing colour to the kitchen. With her latest collection of blown glass products, it appears that, finally, the kitchen can spring forth from being a strictly utilitarian place. From mortars to decantors and vases to paper weights, Michaud's bold colours make their way from the counter onto the tabletop.

orange mortar by michaud   

Michaud's company, Gogo glass based in Montreal, Quebec, seems to be defined by dare, fun, and the joy of creation. Innovation and experience rule the creations of gogo glass. Michaud herself seems akin to the spontaneity and passion of the fire with which she works. The splash of colour she brings to the usually dull or plain mortal and pestle is a warm welcome in red, orange, green, and blue. Also amongst her creations are lemon squeezers, salt bowls, decantors, and more.

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Colors of Religion:  Judaism

Colors of Religion: Judaism


Judaism is the religion of the Jewish people, based on principles and ethics embodied in the Tanakh (The Torah, or Hebrew Bible) and the Talmud. According to Jewish tradition, the history of Judaism begins circa 2000 BCE with the Covenant between God and Abraham, the patriarch and progenitor of the Jewish people. Judaism is among the oldest religious traditions still in practice today. Jewish history and doctrines have influenced other religions such as Christianity, Islam, and Samaritanism. Throughout the Torah, there are many references made to colour, which is used to symbolize these important principles and ethics.

silhouetted star of david

Because blue is the colour of sea and sky, it has come to represent the Divine, height and depth, and even equilibrium. But it is also revered as the colour of God's Glory. The Torah instructs Israelites to put fringes, or tzitzit, on the corners of their garments and weave within those fringes blue threads as another separation, the first notable separation being diet, from non-Jewish people, which discouraged conforming to the acts of heathens and sin. If tempted, they would see the fringe and be reminded of God. Because of this it is also used in Jewish Prayer Shawls. The Flag of Israel has two blue stripes and a blue Star of David against a white background. In modern Hebrew 'blue-white' is used a synonym for 'Israeli' as an adjective, especially for local produce opposed to imported goods.

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Textile Arts New Fall Colors

Textile Arts New Fall Colors


While stumbling around the web I came across a fabric shop that had some great fabric designs. I thought the simple but colorful patterns in their Fall 2007 collection would lend well to some inspired palettes...

TEXTTILE ARTS has the finest in retro, mid-century modern and contemporary Scandinavian design from MARIMEKKO and for the first time in the US, LJUNGBERGS.

From fabric and wall hanging kits to umbrellas and handbags, if you want colorful modern design you have come to the right place.

Elephants

Textile Colors Fall: Elephants
Yellow Elephants   Pink Elephants

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Flower Color Theory: White, Red, Pink and Green

Flower Color Theory: White, Red, Pink and Green


Throughout history flowers, and their colors, have been used to convey sadness, happiness, friendship, love and even dislike. Ever been given a dead black rose? If so, you know exactly the emotions that can come packed in a single flower. It's really no wonder that we are all so drawn to flowers.

Flowers and color are synonymous. Just do a quick palette search here at COLOURlovers containing the word "flower" and you will instantly be shown a multitude of beautiful palettes whose colors can only be replicated in nature. There is no other product that conveys so much feeling based on its color alone. They are sexy, intriguing, and universal and perfect for any occasion.

White Flowers

White Flowers
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Traditionally white flowers, the symbol of tranquility, peace and elegance are used for sympathy offerings and weddings. Their stately appearance lends itself to many types of floral applications. It may seem odd that white flowers are used for both celebration and mourning but really, while sympathy flowers convey grief, they also celebrate life and cherished memories.

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September Light Events: Great Balls of Color!

September Light Events: Great Balls of Color!


From the 10,000 colorful orbs in Italy to 1,000 illuminated helium balloons in England... September seems to be a month filled with wonderfully colorful events. Lights, Color, Beautiful!
 
 

Massimo Silenzio: Circo Massimo - Rome

“Maximum silence” is an installation of lights and colours between history and the future created by Giancarlo Neri and produced thank to cooperation and support from ENEL, and produced by Zètema Progetto Cultura in cooperation with Hfilms. 10.000 luminous globes, placed directly on the ground, slowly changing colours and fading in the magic setting of the Circus Maximus. The luminous installation will be on show until September 11th.

[VIA - NOT-COT]

Massimo Silenzio: Circo Massimo - Rome
img By duegnazio

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Colors of Religion: Islam

Colors of Religion: Islam


Islam is a monotheistic religion originating with the teachings of Muhammad, a 7th-century Arab religious and political figure. The word "Islam" means submission, or the total surrender of oneself to God, Allah. An adherent of Islam is known as a Muslim, meaning "one who submits (to God)". There are between 1 and 1.78 billion Muslims, making Islam the second-largest religion in the world.

al Fatima Mosque

Sacred Color of Islam: Green

Revered is the colour green, which has been associated with Islam as a symbol of the religion itself. Green is the sacred colour of Islam, and is used for the bindings of the Qur'an (the Muslim Holy Book) and in the silken covers of the Sufi saints. It has been suggested that green is revered because it was worn by Muhammad, but it also symbolizes life and nature. When finally reaching paradise in the afterlife, the Qur'an states, "ornaments shall be given to them therein of bracelets of gold, and they shall wear green robes of fine silk and thick silk brocade interwoven with gold, (18:31)" and they will be "Reclining on green cushions and beautiful carpets (55:76)." In Islamic culture green and gold are the colors of paradise.
mohammed ali mosque in cairo, egypt
Mosque Above Painted Ceiling

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