As an artist, I love working with colour. I also love exploring the different meanings and associations each colour holds. And, as part of my own mindfulness practice I work with the energy of colour  in meditations.  I hope you enjoy my colour series, which offers a deep dive into some of my favourite hues and tones. 

 “Color is the place where our brain and the universe meet.” – Paul Klee

The colour blue is brought to you by my painting, Underwater Light, featured below. 

Me and Blue

You’ll see a lot of blue in my artworks – take ‘Underwater Light’ as an example. I’ve always loved blue and use it a lot – and in many different hues. I love aqua, teal and pale blues. I love midnight blue and blues so dark that they are almost black. I find working with blue soothing and calming but also firm, direct, strong. My wedding dress was sapphire in colour, to match my engagement ring – and my studio branding also carries a deep shade of blue.

Sandi Schwartz from The Ecohappiness project says;

Nature is filled with beauty, and color plays a huge role in what attracts us to it. Some colors make us feel more energetic and happy like yellow, orange, and red. There are incredible combinations of colors in nature that wow us, such as peacocks, parrots, and some types of fish like the emperor angelfish and rainbow parrotfish.

We can also find calm by gazing at nature. In fact, the most calming colors stem from nature. Creams, tans, pale blues, and pale greens help create a quiet atmosphere. According to color psychology experts, blue calms the mind and body, lowering blood pressure, heart rate, and respiration. It also minimizes feelings of anxiety and aggression and creates a sense of well-being. Interestingly enough, blue is overwhelmingly chosen as a favorite color by people around the world.’

David Kelly notes on Medium that ‘Blue is often linked to creativity. A possible reason this takes place is due to the physiological responses evoked by the color. Blue lowers blood pressure and thus slows down heart rate. Under these conditions, the body becomes relaxed and under less stress. Therefore, it is easier to keep ideas churning. Darker shades of blue are known to help improve the brain’s thought processes. Lighter shades have been shown to help concentration become improved.’

Other points on Blue

  • The water and turquoise of Caribbean waters often generate positive feelings, and the blue of police uniforms evokes protection, bravery and loyalty.
  • Blue is associated with peaceful rest, deep insight and spiritual fulfilment. Professional uses of blue in advertising, marketing and psychology, have connotations of stability, wisdom and serenity.
  • Although blue evokes images of sky and sea, it is also the colour of courage and dedication. Blue represents introspective journeys and symbolises wisdom and depth of understanding. But blue is also a symbol of depression and the depths of the human psyche. Blue represents serenity, rather than passion, and is the colour of all that is constant and unchanging.
  • Blue is also the colour of the throat chakra, also known as Visuddha. This chakra is located in the throat. It is related to the throat, neck, hands and arms.
  • The throat chakra is related to speech and hearing, and is conducive to spiritual communication.
  • Gemstones that help the throat chakra are turquoise, aquamarine, lapis lazuli, sodalite, quartz, angelite and aquatic aura.

Facts About the Color Blue

  • Blue was the last color to be coined as a term in the English language.
  • Blue is infrequent in nature, so blue flowers are created from genetic modification and breeding.
  • The idea of blue as the color for boys began after World War II. Manufacturers wanted to sell more clothes by making separate clothing for boys and girls.
  • The pigment Prussian blue creates perfect copies of drawings. Architects use this hue to copy their designs, which is where the term “blueprints” came from.

Attending to the colour Blue

‘Attending to colour’. What a great phrase – and what a great idea. I loved exploring this concept recently. It’s a really interesting take on the mindful practice of ‘attention’. And at the same time, it allows us to revel in a creative adventure that promises to be different each time we do the exercise. Arnie Kozak, Ph.D, shared this experience of attending to the colour blue;

As I walked up the hill, I also decided to attend to the color blue. Blue jeans, the occasional blue car, handicap signs in parking lots all popped out. The more I opened to that particular sensation, the more attentive I became. After a while, the blues started popping out–the odd blue trim, the blue fraternity sign, the glint of a blue shirt of the students walking by.

Attending to the outside world is a good way to get yourself out of the storytelling mind. Looking for the color blue–or whatever you like–is a good way to connect you to the world, more as it is rather than how you imagine it. Picking a color gives your busy mind something to do other than spinning stories, pressing on the to-do list, and worrying about the ten thousand things you can worry about.

Mindfulness practice does not need to be complicated, stationary, or interior. Any time that we attend to something with interest, we are practicing meditation. Any time we set aside the anxious preoccupations of the mind and pay attention to what is in front of us, we are practicing meditation. Any time we notice the color blue, we are meditating and can enjoy a wink of awakening.