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Daily Posts. Colorful Ideas & Inspirations.

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Color in Science: Microscopic Photographs

Color in Science: Microscopic Photographs

The Micropolitan Museum exhibits an unworldly spectrum visible only through the lens of a microscope. Painter Wim van Egmond photographs spectacular microscopic masterpieces with ethereal color palettes. To capture these hidden treasures, he uses a Zeiss Standard light microscope and an old Zeiss Photo-microscope. Several methods of illumination are employed: bright-field, dark-field, phase contrast, differential interference contrast, and Rheinberg illumination.

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Van Egmond's Insectarium offers such specimens as the iridescent butterfly wing, whose tiny scales possess a microscopic texture that refracts light. Here we find lavender blue and green.

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The Electrifying Colors of Candlelight

The Electrifying Colors of Candlelight

Warm, romantic, rich, enlivening, homey, flattering to the complexion, prayerful, even mysterious and mystical—there's nothing quite like the atmospheric glow of candlelight. Though typically classified as yellow or golden, a flickering candle flame actually exhibits all the colors of the rainbow. A touch of candlelight can offer emotional appeal, a festive air, or a seductive sparkle to virtually any color palette.

Candlelight - photo-artiste.jpg
img Mirrored flame (top) by Jonathan Assink. Leaning flame (above) by photo-artiste.

According to Celtic lore, candlelight is the only illumination hospitable to shadow. "The ideal light to befriend the darkness, it gently opens up caverns in the darkness and prompts the imagination into activity. The candle allows the darkness to keep its secrets. There is shadow and color within every candle flame" (Anam Cara, A Book of Celtic Wisdom, 1997).

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Lens Flares: Light and Color at Play

Lens Flares: Light and Color at Play

Stray rays of sunlight bouncing inside the lens barrel of a camera leave ghostly trails of stars, glowing halos, subtle rainbows, and specular orbs. Photographers may abhor these secondary traces of light, but lens flares serve a purpose: they create a sense of depth, focus intensity, provide an accent, and lend a dreamy glow to the scenario. The colors of lens flares are typically bright, desaturated, somewhat foggy, and somehow ethereal. Their charm lies in their uncontrolled, unpremeditated, and exuberant nature. Lens flares represent light at play within the tools we use to capture it. They offer brilliant highlights beyond our normal reach.

A ghostly green spectral crescent and pink aura of the moon inspired this palette.
img by Chealion.
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Color Inspiration from the History of Halloween

Color Inspiration from the History of Halloween

Jack-o-lanterns, haunted houses, vampires, witches, ghosts, candy and kids trick-or-treating... Halloween has grown into one of the biggest commercial holidays in the US since the first official citywide celebration in Anoka, Minn., in 1921. But, Halloween has been around for over 2,000 years and its customs and rituals have changed dramatically over time. Here we'll look at a bit of the history of this holiday and get some color inspiration from the day's iconic colors.

Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in).

The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter.

By the 800s, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands. In the seventh century, Pope Boniface IV designated November 1 All Saints' Day, a time to honor saints and martyrs. It is widely believed today that the pope was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, but church-sanctioned holiday. The celebration was also called All-hallows or All-hallowmas (from Middle English Alholowmesse meaning All Saints' Day) and the night before it, the night of Samhain, began to be called All-hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween. Even later, in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas.

Source - History Channel

Halloween Colors & Symbolism

 Halloween jack-o-lantern 

Probably the most well known symbol of Halloween is the carved pumpkin, or jack-o-lantern. The tradition of carving a lantern comes from the Irish who used potatoes and turnips, but was modified to use the pumpkin in the US where it was available.


There are a few colors that are strongly associated with Halloween. Orange and black being the two main colors of the holiday. Although these colors have been mass-marketed in recent years, they are thought to go all the way back to the celtic celebrations and be reminders of the candles and fires that were lit to welcome the cold black winter ahead.

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The Ghostly Colors of Spectral Spectres

The Ghostly Colors of Spectral Spectres

Shrouded in mystery, ghostly apparitions materialize in many subtly haunting colors. Besides deathly white, the specrtral spectrum embraces ethereal violets, cadaverous yellows, twilit blues, midnight blacks, moonlit silvers, and near-transparent yet unmistakable hues spanning the entire night rainbow. The delicate, insubstantial hues of the ghostly realm can add an emotive dimension of wistfulness to any palette, Halloween-themed or otherwise.

Charley: What color?
Nancy: Ghost color.
Charley: Ghost color? Oh, ghost color!
—John Cecil Holm, Gramercy Ghost (1951)


Strange white lustres and shadowy blacks are integral to the philosophy of art teacher John Ruskin. He explains: "When white is well managed, it ought to be strangely delicious,—tender as well as bright,—like inlaid mother of pearl, or white roses washed in milk. The eye ought to seek it for rest, brilliant though it may be; and to feel it as a space of strange, heavely paleness in the midst of the flushing of the colours. This effect you can only reach by general depth of middle tint, by absolutely refusing to allow any white to exist except where you need it, and by keeping the white itself subdued by grey, except at a few points of chief lustre.

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AI CS3 + Flickr + In The Mod Mashup

AI CS3 + Flickr + In The Mod Mashup

What do you get when Dr. Woohoo mashes up Adobe Illustrator CS3, Flickr and In The Mod: Color Analytics? A free swf Panel that runs inside AI CS3 that allows you to search Flickr & In The Mod, view the colors from each image or painting you select and then save them directly to the Swatches Panel in AI.

Adobe Illustrator CS3 + Flickr + In The Mod mash-up from dr woohoo.

The inspiration for the Flickr integration comes from a variety of sources – watching what Mario and Marcos did with Kelvin’s Flashr; looking at the photographs of the Ronin, Annie Liebowitz and Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir; and of course the colors we see all around us – in the orchids and the sunsets – whose combinations are simply perfect.

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Color Inspiration: Blends, Gradients, Steps, Oh My!

Color Inspiration: Blends, Gradients, Steps, Oh My!

Blend, Gradient, Steps... whatever you call them, they're fun to make and to look at. I tried to organize them as best possible, but it honestly is difficult to categorize these things. First we have blends where all the colors are in pretty much the same hue. Then blends to black or gray. Analogous blends are of colors that are near each other on the color wheel and I threw the rest in complementary blends as they, for the most part have colors across the color wheel from each other.

Monochromatic Blends

santa.baby _oo _oo

[L] AlterEgo <3 peachbelle

cherry valance Almost spring

Attack! 200-240 Degrees By10

a cold day blue fader

deep down Be Mine!

'Dowager's Greens a whole room

' Choy Bourgeon de Tilleul

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Great for Color, Your Home & The Earth: FLOR

Great for Color, Your Home & The Earth: FLOR

Today we're joining over 14,000 other blogs for Blog Action Day's conversation about the environment. Being conscious of the issues facing our planet and being proactive about lessening your impact doesn't have to be a plain or painful experience. FLOR is a company that is bringing lots of color and style to the home, and doing it with a planet friendly mission. Their customizable floor coverings make adding color to your personal space and helping the earth super easy.

FLOR makes a modular carpet tile in tons of styles, making it easy to create a custom rug of any site or run it wall to wall in any mix of colors or patterns. No Gluey-Goo, No Professional Carpet Layers... These are DIY and easy. (I look forward to making a palette of color on my office floor when the remodel is done.)

FLOR Color Options

At FLOR, we're really proud of who we are. From our great designs, to the functionality and versatility of our product, we think FLOR is pretty cool. But more than that, we're proud of what we stand for: Mission Zero™. Our environmental position, launched 12 years ago by our parent company, Interface, Inc., seeks to eliminate any negative impact our family of companies has on the environment by 2020.

We believe it's not just about what a product is made of, it's about how it's made. In the last 12 years, we have reduced manufacturing waste sent to landfills by 63% and our absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 56% worldwide. FLOR products bring a piece of Mission Zero into your home.

FLOR has an R&R™ program (Return-Recycle) that allows customers to share the responsibility of living green with FLOR. If you're ready to get rid of existing FLOR to make room for new FLOR in your home, contact us. We'll arrange for your used carpet tiles to be picked up and shipped back to our mill, where the old tiles will be recycled into new product.
FLOR is eco-friendly »

DYI Flooring for Color Lovers

FLOR modular tiles come in a variety of colors, patterns and styles. Included below are some examples of the color variety... you can Browse by Color to see all the options.

FLOR Carpet Colors
Blog Action Day

We're supporting our good friends over at BlogActionDay.org, an annual event where bloggers unite to bring some attention to a single important issue. This year the topic is the Environment and over 14,000 blogs will reach over 12 million readers.

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Unicorns: Unreal Shades of White

Unicorns: Unreal Shades of White

Legendary and mythical creatures are best seen with the inner eye of imagination. When we bring color to mythological creatures, we invite others to behold the fantastical. We have the opportunity to conjure up an encounter as visceral as it is visible. Hence, we should strive to be inventive, inspirational, and provocative. A unicorn, for example, would not optimally be pure white. Pristine as the creature may be, pure white doesn't tell a story, and story is the driving force of myth. Even the subtlest of shades are required to establish poetic dimensionality. Peter Beagle, author of the The Last Unicorn (1968), took great care to distinguish between two shades of white on a unicorn's coat. He described a very old unicorn as being "no longer the careless color of sea foam but rather the color of snow falling on a moonlit night." The following two colours illustrate his description:
ocean foam twilight snow

Unicorns Have Also Been Described As:

silkwhite pearl

Oatmeal water white

watery ice Winter morning sun

pale moon Milk

diamond Fog

img by Sebastiá Giralt.

Some Unicorn Palette Inspiration:

Unicorn Temporary Unicorn

Purple unicorns Unicorn Night Light

Unicorn Unicorn Tapestry

Unicorn Soup the unicorn is dead

Awkward Unicorn unicorn disguised

i was born a unicorn Purple Unicorn

Unicorns Unicorn

Real Men 3 Unicorns Unicorn

fairy on a unicorn Lady & Unicorn

death of a unicorn uniquecorn love

Unicorn Fun Fact


The Royal Crest, seen on British passports, features a lion and a unicorn, two animals not exactly seen often in the United Kingdom. Why?
The lion on the royal crest symbolizes england, and the unicorn scotland.
The lion makes reference to the "three passant guardians", that are used in the English coat of arms since Richard the lionheart.
The unicorn is used in the Scottish coat of arms.
The lion is crowned, and the unicorn is chained (unicorns were originally considered to be dangerous beasts).


Header Image img by Philocrites.

Craig ConleyAbout the Guest Author, Craig Conley
Website: http://www.OneLetterWords.com
Craig is an independent scholar and author of dozens of strange and unusual books, including a unicorn field guide and a dictionary of magic words. He also loves color: Prof. Oddfellow

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Landmark Colors:  The Himalayas

Landmark Colors: The Himalayas

The Himalayas are a mountain range in Asia, separating the Indian subcontinent from the Tibetan Plateau. The greater span of the range includes the Himalaya proper, the Karakoram, the Hindu Kush, and a host of minor ranges, which spells a transition from lush forests to ice and snow. The mountain range is home to the world's tallest peaks with over one-hundred exceeding 7,200 metres (including Mt. Everest).

Of colour, the rich browns of the mountains, their snow-capped tops that resemble white clouds, lush greens of the lowland forests, stretches of blue sky, and the teals found in the rushing, life-giving rivers are just waiting to be discovered. Although it's not the same as being there -- to see these wonderful earth tones -- let's take a journey through pictures to the largest mountain range on planet Earth.

rock and snow mountain

The Himalayas stretch across the six nations of Bhutan, China, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Their peaks and valleys hold the sources of three of major river systems in the world, being the Indus basin, the Ganga-Brahmaputra basin and the Yangtze basin. This teal-green supply of silt-rich water allows for so much to grow around it, as it passes its wealth down the spider-web rivers to even more fertile lands, allowing for the greens of plant-life to flourish.

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