While watching a movie, have you ever wondered why some scenes look a little warmer when others are dark? Or when the entire movie has a shade of yellow running throughout. You might not think much of it, but your mind perceives it quite differently. Our brains have quite an association with colors. Each color can be used to create a different kind of emotion in us. Sometimes, without our own realizations.
Now, with social media and short-form videos, every creator has an opportunity to tell a story. Even further, got to convince a new client with your presentation? Well, use the right colors, and the deal might just be yours. Seems like a far fetch, but it’s actually true. So, it’s just not creators but people in the business who can learn a thing or two about colors to attract and engage their audience.
That’s just what we try to accomplish through this article. This quick read guides you through some tips for using pastel colors to make your visuals stand out.
Before we go ahead with pastel colors, let’s quickly go through some basics of colors. As we understand from a color wheel, there are three ways to categorize them — primary, secondary, and tertiary. While primary colors do not mix with other colors, secondary colors form with the combination of two primary colors. You can curate tertiary by mixing primary and secondary. That being said, not every combination of primary and secondary colors can create a tertiary color.
Basic elements of color
Hue, shade, and tint are some of the most necessary elements of a color pallet. Hue is the purest form of color, while shade is the addition or refraction of black in a color. Manipulation of White, on the other hand, is what makes tint.
What makes it pastel?
You are here because you know you have to use pastels. But do you really know what makes a color truly pastel? Any color can be pastel if you use a sufficient amount of tint to it: not too high, neither too low, just the exact amount to make it charming, soft, and easy to the eyes. The most common reason to use pastel in a video or slideshow is to make it more attractive and enchanting. Since the colors are not very bold or gravely soft, they are easily consumable and engaging.
Even when using pastel colors, one needs to understand contrast. No matter how good your background looks, if your text in the foreground is not legible, all your work can go in vain. So, choose a color that complements the content. Find a clear distinction between the colors you want to use. Many times in slideshows you are required to use a certain corporate-defined guideline. These guidelines are predestined, which means you need to find your way around them. Understanding your audience, you need to adjust your contract. For example — a toddler would love a variety of colors with many combinations. However, a professional business person would find the same combinations quite annoying and distracting. The bottom line: take care of the contrast ratio.
Understand warm and cool colors
Pastel colors allow you the opportunity to play alongside warm and cool pallets. Using the right amount of mix in videos, when required, can truly make the scenes and elements in them stand out. Darker places in a video can have cool pastels, while a sunny street can get an orange pastel to further enhance the scene.
In any case, you cannot always go with a template. At a certain point, you need to decide which color works best for your video. In such instances, having a good judgment of warm and cool pastel colors can instantly fix a situation.
Matching colors with emotions
Every color has a different emotional connection with us humans. As video creators, we need to understand these emotions to get the desired effect from the audience. Here are some colors and their associations with emotions.
Red — Love, Passion, Excitement, Aggression
Black — Technical, Formal, Perish, Heavy
Yellow — Happy, Optimistic, Imaginative
White — Simple, Clean, Pure
Green — Natural, Healthy, Environmental
Gray — Secure, Practicality
Purple — Wise, Royalty, Mystery
Brown — Outside, Earthy
Blue — Calm, Peace, Free, Trust
Having the right mix
You can use different combinations of pastels to get the right emotional response from your audience. As mentioned above, each color can be associated with an emotion. So, for example — you can choose a warm color like yellow (lemon) for your background and dark color like black for your foreground text.
Looking at it from an emotional standpoint, the background exhibits warmth and happiness while black denotes heavy and formal. A mix of these colors can help you find a middle ground where the contract is just right for the audience to grasp the information while taking it on a lighter note.
The same process can apply in an opposite manner where the emotions would institute a less comfortable and more dominant perspective. This will hint towards more professionalism and a corporate palette.
The portrayal of the colors
It doesn’t matter if you shoot your video in 8k on a Red Dragon and use the best color combination to render it. If you watch it on a 13-inch laptop, there is no way your audience will appreciate it. So, for maximum attention, especially in a corporate environment, use the biggest screen to broadcast your video.
Pastel colors are one of the best tools you can employ in your videos. They enhance the overall look of your content and provide an edge that not many generalized videos do. However, using the wrong pastel color combinations can make your video disengaging. Similarly, if you use the same color again and again, it can render the video monotonous. Before using colors, try to understand your target audience and the message you want to convey via the video. Second, know the emotion you desire to enlighten in them and then go ahead and employ the right colors.