The color red just makes me smile

Following black and white, red was the first color in use. Primarily associated with passion and a zest for life, red is one of the top two favorite colors of all people. It excites the emotions, from love and passion to fiery anger. Being very powerful, red can speed up the pulse, increase the respiration rate, and raise blood pressure – so it is impossible to ignore.

All reds are not created equal. Aside from light and dark shades, there are two kinds of red. Yellow-based reds are “tomato” reds. Blue-based reds are “berry” reds. When red is applied to a black background it glows, on white it appears dull, and in contrast with orange becomes somewhat lifeless.

The American abstract painter Ad Reinhardt immersed himself in the exploration of the color red in the painting titled “Red”. He had painted a rigid pattern of red squares using this most expressive color among the primary colors. With its strict geometry he revealed many variations of red hues.

Russian artist Kazmir Malevichin in his composition of “Eight Red Rectangles” not only explored the uneven spacing and slight tilt of the juxtaposed shapes but also played with the different tones of red. With the use of various red hues of floating rectangles on a white background he infused the composition with energy.

With its intensity red is energizing. It is vibrant and full of life.


While white reflects light and is a presence of all color, black absorbs light and represents an absence of color. Black is the opposite of white – literally color without color. Typically black is associated with the unknown, with the negative – something secretive and sad. On the other hand, black is a very prestigious and formal color. In fashion and interiors, black exudes elegance and a seamless design element that’s always inviting for some contemporary and fun additions. Like Piet Mondrian’s abstract paintings, black plays a very important role. His most famous paintings are made up of red yellow, white and blue and, of course, the addition of black. Clean, simple and fun. So black doesn’t necessarily have to be associated with darkness and sadness but can be a great addition to all the colors bright and subtle to be a part of happy and joyful composition too. The notion of black signifying darkness might be looked at from a different point of view. Space is often thought of as a black void. Yet, when looked at very closely it is filled with stars and galaxies which, ironically, shine of light – the light from which all colors are born.

If you don’t think of white as a color, think again….

White is not often considered a color. Even the Impressionists didn’t see white in nature. But, nature has plenty of white – objects such as clouds, snow, and flowers to name a just a few. White has its own harmony of silence.

For me either, next to the brightness and playfulness of all the other pigments, white in its pure form wasn’t something I was missing. Of course I always had a white tub of paint for mixing and adding to other colors, but never used it alone. Just white, in it’s pure, clean presence. With time, I realized its absence – that I was missing its luster and allure. White is more than just a color. It is the manifestation of all colors together, the complete energy and spectrum of light.

Slowly with time, white became an important part of my paintings. Leaving the white, raw color of paper between the colorful lines in my watercolors  is meant to establish a dreamy lightness, like a surreal quality, and suggests a notion of calmness and safety. White can offer something that no other color can – an inner cleansing and purifying of your thoughts and emotions. It is associated with purity, innocence, light, cleanliness and spirituality. It is the color of perfection. In psychology, white is the color of new beginnings; it is the blank canvas waiting to be written upon.

Robert Rauschenberg’s White Paintings (1951) consist of a different number of modular panels that have been painted completely white.  His primary aim was to create a painting that looked untouched by human hands, thereby being absolutely pure. Shocking when first exhibited in1953, his works gradually secured a place in art history as an important precursor of Minimalism and Conceptualism. They require attention from the viewer, asking one to slow down, watch  closely over time and realize the subtle shifts of colors, light and texture.

Color of the moment

I’m fascinated with colors. What I’ve learned about colors is that I never stop learning about them. They play a very important role in the world we live in and that surrounds us. Color is essential in enhancing our environment. It can communicate emotion, create moods and optical illusions, delight. It is so much more than just décor. It is almost impossible to separate the “seeing” of color from the “feeling” because so much of what we see is influenced by what we feel. Everybody has a natural affinity for or attraction to certain colors. The choice of colors in everyday life, such as those of the clothing you wear or how you decorate can be a powerful tool that can affect your emotions, mood and wellbeing. In my art I’m looking for combinations of colors that please the aesthetic sense and appreciation for beauty. My attraction to colors constantly changes, but can almost be like a love affair during which I indulge in the particular color and explore its possibilities. Lately, I really enjoyed working with blues and purples. Each palette expresses a different mood. The blue has a calming effect – it is the color of the water and sky. It symbolizes trust, peace and loyalty. It can create a sense of calmness and relaxation.I’m not sure, but maybe these are the colors of my soul’s desire right now. I can certainly say that the color combinations reflect my mood of the moment.