What meaning comes to mind when you see the color white being used in business? Is it pure, clean, and smart efficient and modern? Businesses have used white and grey to give a modern edge. Apple iPhone and Samsung phones all come in white.
One question we keep coming across regarding the color white. Are black and white colors or shades? For the benefit of this article, we will refer to white as a color.
White is never a shade. as a shade is an intensity of colours. Dark White doesn’t exist.
White can be a color depending on the context.
White is a color in light. So every color in white light exists and is seen through a prism. White is a reflection of every color.
White is not a color, when all other colors are mixed in terms of paint or pastels. If every color is combined in paint the color is black. It would be impossible to get white from other colors in this context.
White acts best as a background color though. All other colors look great on white. Never has white clashed as it can’t because every color is in white. From a web designer’s perspective, logo design always requires a logo version to be created in black and white. This makes sure that whatever the background, your logo will stand out. In fact, if you haven’t done so already, speak to your graphic designer and ask him for a copy of it.
White is probably not going to be your main color. So may I recommend this superb article that will give you a huge help in boosting your imagination in the meaning behind every possible color for branding. The study is called The Meaning Of Colours and it will take around 10 minutes to read.
Before we look at what business would work well with white, we have a list of positive meanings to consider. White is used to represent good, moral upright and pure. Other words to support these meanings are innocent and fresh. So these are really positive and why white is always a perfect complement to any web design.
Let’s look at some of the negative meanings commonly associated with white. Basic and boring are used and it’s true. White space makes room for other bold statements and call to action buttons. Isolation coldness, being alone, clean or even sterile is perfect if you want to achieve this. Too many designers clutter up there web design and would do well to take a lesson from white.
While I wouldn’t recommend white on its own, I would seriously include it in the pallet of colors during a re-branding session with one of my clients.
White is strong because every color relies on white. Without a white background every color in the rainbow and mentioned in our Meaning Of Colours Guide could get lost. This is always a consideration when you want your logo to stand out as you can always guarantee the background.
What is white color code? If you are a designer using Adobe Photoshop or a developer coding with CSS you will be familiar with these numbers. So if you want the white color code then use the Hex colour code #FFFFFF which is simply (255,255,255) in RGB or (0,0,0,0) in CMYK
As previously mentioned in this article, designing for a website in white is quite common if it’s the main background color. Web designs. For an example, look at the website below. This website was designed for an amazing artist living in the Bournemouth area. The artist wanted his art and scenery to pop out of the page. What would vividly help display the colours of his art? White was the obvious choice. So as you look at his website, notice how the clean and pure background lifts the art out of the page and makes it the main focal point. The artist was so happy with the results that he recommend me to a furniture company also based in Bournemouth. You can view the web design in more detail by visiting my portfolio at Michael Hemming Scape Artist.
White flowers are pretty common. I captured this photo recently of a bee in this beautiful white flower. The various shades of white give it a clean but pure feel only found in white.
From the photo, I extracted the various shades and tried to find a combination that worked well with white. Once saved, I intend to use this in one of my next web designs or rebranding projects. Greens and white are just stunning.
The photo above gave me an inspiring pallet.
Apple has use white successfully. So has Google with a lot of white background and extremely sharp photos, sales of phones and tablets have rocketed.
If you have a wedding shop or jewellery shop, or even watch companies, you will know that white works really well. White is exceptionally good at being in the background. Photography works well with white as was seen with the artist’s site above. You may want to consider white if your business is related to sport and technology.
Rather than use the standard hex number #FFFFFF. I find that off-white works best e.g. I use hex number #F3F3F3. For what reason would I use this slightly off white? Well even white is visible if you did want to show some very subtle colors of white on the page.
White logos don’t look great because they need contrast. Hopefully you can see why using white as the main color is often creating a lot of complications. Below is the clearer and more accepted black on white version.
White is often used to associate with words such as sterilised, cold and isolation.
What positive meanings do customers associate with white? White works really well to convey cleanness, clarity, purity, simplicity and freshness.
White is the color related to weddings in the Western world, yet a widow wears white in South Asia
Snow white was a Disney cartoon based on the expression “white as snow”. This is referring to pure, clean, and innocent.
“A White Knuckle Ride” is used as the meaning for something fast, exciting and frightening like a roller coaster ride.
In conclusion, white as the main color on a different contrasting background is going to give a designer a “White knuckle ride”. Maybe it’s still an untapped design idea that I haven’t fully discovered yet. So what are your thoughts on white design? Is white design best avoided or is it to be embraced? Let me know in the comments below.