There’s a direct link between the use of colour (or color for my friends who use International English), and creative thinking.
It’s hard to think in colour, when your world has the brightness turned down. Yet as adults, many non-creative people surround themselves with a very limited range of colours. Their homes, furniture, offices and clothes are toned down to the point where they almost blend into the background.
Here’s the thing: As scientific studies have found, colours can have a measurable impact on how we feel and how we think.
Children, colour and creativity
Have you ever noticed how colourful kids stuff is? My son is just 8 years old and pretty much everything he uses is extremely colourful. From his toys and cutlery to his books, bedding and toiletries, everything is bright and pumped full of colour. These colours help keep children engaged, interested and it stimulates their mind.
The good news for us as adults, is that colour can be deliberately used to stimulate your mind, too.
Introducing colour to your creativity
Now, whilst I am not suggesting you start dressing in technicolor, unless you want to, I am suggesting you introduce as much colour into your creativity as possible.
- Use multicoloured pens and pencils when you think on paper.
- Use a colourful background image for your computer and colourful themes for your phone / tablet device.
- If you do a lot of your thinking in your office, have some really colourful desk items around you. Mice, staplers, desk phones, computer monitors, writing pads and pen holders come in lots of different colours.
- Put some bright, colourful pictures or posters on your office or studio wall.
- … You get the idea.
The blue secret
Will the introduction of all this colour instantly turn you into a creative thinking powerhouse? No, (you’re already a creative thinking powerhouse, you were born that way.) But colours do have an impact.
For instance, blue is shown to help with creative thinking. It’s believed this happens, because we associate the colour blue with relaxation, cloud-free skies, cool blue water etc.
Here’s a suggestion: Start small. Get yourself some different coloured pens or pencils and use them, the next time you are developing ideas. Use them to mark-up your work. When you see the difference this makes, it may inspire you to introduce more colour to your creative thinking universe!