Friday, September 26, 2008

hue & cry

I've always been very sensitive to color - the wrong combination of colors can set my teeth on edge. (Oh, no...not the olive with the turquoise! I don't care if they're both green, Mike. Just no.) Patterns drive me crazy, which is why I'd rather look at the half-unfinished walls in our house than the variety of slate blue, burnt orange, and goldenrod country-fied wallpapers the previous owners had put up. But put a luscious cobalt next to the perfect crisp apple green? Bliss. A deep velvety eggplant next to a creamy golden ecru? Oh, my. Heaven.

I could go completely deaf tomorrow and never really miss music. But lose my beloved colors? Might as well just put me somewhere quiet so I can just whither away. When my father died, one of the things I knew I wanted was his old, beat-up book of calibrated colors. He was a union painter and would carry it with him to work everyday. When I was a child, I'd love to just marvel at all the slight differences in hue and gradation. I'd put colors side by side to see how they looked together and when I found a particularly good combination - it was as if something resonated within me. "Ahhhh," my brain seemed to say, humming with satisfaction. "Perfect."

And like a chef that can taste a dish, identify all the ingredients, and reproduce it, I can see a color and then copy it in paint. Or perhaps it's more like a musician with perfect pitch. Perfect palette perhaps? Whatever it's called, I think I might have it.

I took this test and got 100%.


Lissa said...

Wow. I clicked on the link and immediately realized it was way, WAY out of my league. My league is more that I finally learned not to wear black and brown together. (Of course, no sooner did I master that concept than fashion decided to do exactly that. Dammit.)

Mike said...

Not quite perfect, but pretty good for doing it in 3 minutes. And olive and turquoise are both green.

Old NFO said...

I'm not even going to try... :-) Colors are y'alls bag, I spent 22 years wearing olive green, serving on grey boats, so I don't care...LOL

smith kaich jones said...

I'm impressed. You have a color metronome in your head. I didn't even try & I'm GOOD with colors. And oh! The front room here at our business is a purple/cobalt piece of heaven & YES! A bowl of Granny Smiths in there is indeed bliss.

MY little artistic gift from God is the ability to know within almost nothingness whether something is level or not level & also when just EXACTLY - right there! - a room or painting or photo is perfectly balanced, perfectly composed. I just feel it.

Love this fun Friday post!
Have a good weekend & many thanks for stopping by my blog!

:) Debi

Brigid said...

I took the test.

That explains my choice of socks.

Anonymous said...


phlegmfatale said...

Wow. That was really cool. I scored an 8, but I blame my monitor.

I love that your keepsake was his color thingie. I took my grandma's biscuit cutter. Precious memories.

Jannie "Funster" said...

Well, that was a little ego shattering.

At least I have your beautifully written imagery to soothe my fragile spirit over the hue test.


Ted said...

I took one look and fled screaming, so I guess I scored a zero.

As the lovely and colorful Mrs. Borepatch likes to tell me, I was born with a Crayola 8 pack, while she was born with the Crayola 128 pack (with built-in sharpener).

She also doesn't let me decorate.

This way, the place looks nice. ;-)

Willorith said...

I scored 8. I'll judge it not bad for a fat middle aged redneck. It was fun and interesting.
Your descriotion of your relationship with colors is similar to my relationship with machines and tools. The beauty of function is superior to beauty without function. Indian Larry termed it "gizmoness" We should see the gizmoness of how it works. There is great beauty and nobility in good design.
Intelligent, creative people find allied souls in each other, even when they are from widely divergent fields. We can capture some of the love of creation from each other and add it to ourselves to fuel our own intellectual rocket trip of creativity.

Holly said...

Hey! I got a perfect score, too. My mom always said I had a good eye for color. But then I sew, so I spend a lot of time matching things.

That test was beastly, though. Staring at the monitor under fluorescent lights? Headache.

The Saj said...

I say go gun metal gray with copper or brass trimmings.


jigsaw said...

great test - maybe because i got "Zero" as well :) ... like you, Breda, i've got a bit of a colour fetish ....