I suck at using color in anything I design.
I’m totally scared of it. That’s why my wardrobe is made of mostly neutrals. White, blacks, and the other monochromic values in between. But as a person of color I feel that it is my ethnic duty to be inclusive in everything I do. Even my designs.
My journey towards diversity started with a simple exercise I performed everyday last week. The rules were simple:
I must use at least three colors.
I must design on a rectangle with a ratio of 2:1.
I must only use rectangles and squares.
I must make two designs each day.
I must not take longer than 15 minutes to make one design.
I must not use Pantone or any other color decision making tool.
I must use colors that are not neutrals.
Here are the results.
Looking back, I noticed a few themes from my experiments with color. I was really drawn towards bold and deep colors. I tried using pastel colors but I would usually go back towards increasing the saturation and giving them more body. When trying to think of a color scheme I would write down a phrase like, “bubble gum cotton candy,” “blues and greens,” or “infatuation”. From this phrase I would try to find three colors that worked together to give me that feeling. This felt like work at first, but then it became very fun and therapeutic. I was just making pretty shapes with pretty colors.
And I really think I improved over time. Am I a master? Not at all. Am I a beginner? A little less so.