ColorFULL of Meaning: RED

ColorFULL of Meaning: RED

Color Wheel

The next series of posts will delve into the meanings, associations, and symbolism of color…starting with the color wheel above.  We have explored the Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Colors…let’s go deeper with those now, and learn a bit about color psychology.  Now that’s a horse of a different color…but not necessarily a dark horse. Off to the color FULL races…starting with the ever powerful, ever provocative, unique hue of RED….


The primary associations we make with RED  are heat, fire  and blood, (“red-handed”),


and by further association, wounds, pain, war, victims, and revolution, warmth, sunset, the  tropics, excitement, and enthusiasm.  Have you ever spoken in a “fiery” manner, or been told, “You’ve got fire in your belly!”?


In Astrology, RED is associated with  Aries, the hot-tempered, impatient, aggressive leader,  and is the symbolic color for  Mars, god of war.  We know what color Mars the planet is!


RED also associates with life, love, passion, activity, devotion, eroticism, strength and sacrifice,


as well as aggression, intensity, fierceness, destruction and death.  Covering the gamut, RED is a color of extremes.


Physiologically RED energizes, stimulates, excites, initially raises blood pressure, and stimulates the appetite. A good choice of color for dining rooms, restaurants, and other eating areas.


RED can be provocative, (waving the  red flag at the bull to get it to charge),  a call to action, the signal of revolution. It is the color of combat, rebellion and dominance.


RED can be the color of hate…



or the color of love…


Attention-getting RED may be the most  dynamic of all colors, dominating other hues. It is used across cultures in branding, marketing, publicity and advertising.


The lens of the eye has to adjust to focus red light wavelengths, thus RED advances, making  red objects seem closer then they actually are.


On an energetic level, RED corresponds to the Basis Chakra, symbolizing life, fertility, and reproduction,  and influencing the sex glands and organs.


As regards to Synesthesia, or  associations with other senses RED associates this way: Sound- loud, trumpet. Temperature: warm-hot. Taste/Odor: sweet, strong. Tactile: firm, solid. Weight: heavy.


On a psychological level, RED is instinctive, and sets an alarm mood. Our reaction to it is primarily emotional.


In short, RED is a powerful color, the color of power, and through our own experience on all levels shows us the Power of Color!


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5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. […] and our associations change with our feelings and circumstances. As we found in our exploration of RED, colors may be inflected many different ways, and even contain within themselves systems of […]

  2. Hi Zebra,

    Red is HOT! And so are your posts.

    Signed, a smouldering and simmering EB

    • Smoulder on chere EB!!! Sooo good to hear from You!
      I am working my way through the primaries and secondaries…did Blue last week…this week Yellow is UP! Also will transpose into a guide for my students! Hope you are well and burgeoning!

      • Oh, I’m smoldering and simmering all right I’m in Bangkok! Talk about Color! It’s everywhere.

  3. How wonderFULL! Looking forward to seeing your images and reading your words
    about it!!! Have such a great trip.

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