About a month ago at PBJS, I was tasked with a color theory study to be used for four large tech events (client name disclosed for privacy), using only the 22 colors in their brand guidelines. Larissa Barth and I created four event “brands” based on color psychology.
Each event had an audience to appeal to, so beyond the meaning the colors are known to possess, their style, theme, and trend had to appeal to the attendees of each event. Though these exact palettes were not completely implemented by the client, the pairing process allowed me to reflect on what looks good in regards to design versus what works. And of course, the importance of color.
In design school, color theory was one of my favorite classes and therefore playing with hues was an easy first go-to. Larissa and I put the hues into four categories based on description words that not only represent the significance of that specific range on the color spectrum, but that correlate with the individual audiences of each event. Our outcome for each event's colors and corresponding description words were:
Once there was a solid color pairing foundation established, we began to think of ways to make the overall brand of each event sexy yet consistent.
The first design uses black as the main primary color, and sequentially the first three hues from the pairing foundation we came up with for the 3 other primary colors.
The second design uses a darker hue from the foundation color palette as the main primary color. It then incorporates white, another hue from the existing corresponding palette, and a complementary color as the other three primary colors. The "complementary color" here, can be used as a highlighting or callout tool in final designs, web ads, etc.
The last two concepts, are further iterations of the second design, yet they use either grey or black as the main primary to allow color to be used for meaning and callouts in future branding, rather than having it as the main (and a bit overwhelming) primary/ background coloring.