What does the color yellow mean to you and your company? What do your customers and web site visitors associate with this happy bright color? Does it really work for branding a business? Is yellow the most perfect color in design or does it have a hidden negative side?
Initially we may connect yellow with well known fast food restaurants. If your web site is a fast food restaurant, then yellow may be an ideal color. McDonald’s apparently chose yellow and red for a good reason. If you take a sneak-peak at our article called The Meaning Of Colors you will see that the color red means fast. Yellow means Happiness. So McDonald’s’ declared “Fast Happiness” or certainly implied it using the colors red and yellow. Maybe Denny’s took this idea too?
Another well known brand using yellow is the Mailchimp logo. This comes to mind when we think of happy, fun and cheerful. Although the Mailchimp logo recently had some changes, interestingly the logo color ( Hex number #FFE01B ) stayed the same. The yellow is called “Cavendish” supposedly based on a banana yellow. Though it’s called Cavendish Yellow by them.
Not everything is positive when it comes to Yellow. The color yellow meaning varies depending on what country you live in. Egyptians consider it represents sadness and upset, the western world considers it’s associated with happiness. Japan sees it as courage. So below are some of the positive and negative words associated with yellow that you will need to have in mind when using it in web design and branding.
If you were to name a color that brightens up your life like a ray of sunshine, yellow is the color that will come to mind. Most children will use yellow to color in a sun on their picture at the age of 4. Yellow is happy, sunny, confident and optimistic.
5% Men chose yellow as their favourite colorLive Science
6% Women chose yellow as their favourite color
To make my point, notice the felt tip visual experiment in my YouTube video below.
Using yellow in design can be tricky. In this case my client wanted a silver and gold branding to align it with a release of his book. This author site used variations of light yellow and gold to contrast it with a white background. Take a look at some visuals of how the design looks. The Website is called Investigating cryptocurrencies. The color yellow meaning here related to happiness and wealth from a popular currency.
Yellow is a very natural color. Most gardens will offer yellow through daises, buttercups, sunflowers, pansies or roses. What these flowers can provide is inspiration for colours you would never pair together. Therefore it would be wrong in every sense other than when it’s natural for some reason it looks stunning.
With so many beautiful flowers, I went out equipped with my camera to find a color scheme based on nature. Below is the photos I chose to use on this experiment. The idea was to find a color palette I could use, based on yellow for my next design.
This photo is one of many flowers that show an impossible color combination. My photo below is of a striking bright yellow with a burgundy red.
I use coolors online color scheme tool to extract the colors from the photo. In like manner, this gives me a profound color scheme based on the photo along with the hex colors needed for using on style sheets for html code and Photoshop.
Here is my example of a color palette that shouldn’t work. It’s bright, bold and happy!
Please feel free to use the hex numbers above in your next log or design are there so you can use them in a design.
Yellow branding is everywhere. Below you can find it on gasoline or petroleum companies, fast foods like Denny’s and McDonald’s, car hire companies, fast cars too. Delivery networks or if you go with gold under the umbrella of yellow it opens it up to many more businesses.
Yellow is on the whole considered in a positive way. Apart from yellow fever and a few other cultural views it’s hard to think of it negatively. Cowardly is sometimes associated with yellow, as is caution, anxiety, fear trickiness and possibly a little weak. I wouldn’t consider these a reason not to use yellow in design. The main question you need to ask yourself is; will using my chosen shade of yellow have a strong enough contrast to stand out against its background? If yes, then your yellow should work well for you.
First, the color yellow can mean happy, warm, energetic fun and vibrant. That is generally the initial point of view. These are really great words for branding a business. Secondly words such as friendly, optimism, good-humoured, confidence are connected with it. Finally words such as creativity, wisdom and logic can be used.
Yellow fever isn’t a view you want associated with a happy color. This disease is transmitted and spread by mosquitoes. Why is it called Yellow? This is down to the jaundice that sets it Symptoms include a yellow tinge to the skin and whites of the eyes.
In USA they speak of tying a yellow ribbon around a tree. Additionally there is a song called, “Tie a yellow ribbon ’round the ole oak tree”. These ribbons are worn as a sign of hope as women waited for their men to come home from war. Furthermore, yellow ribbon is still used today.
Why are many taxis or cabs yellow? This is due to the ability to be seen in busy traffic. A university study found that yellow is the color most easily seen.
Yellow was the name of the song that shot pop group Coldplay to fame in the year 2000
In conclusion, yellow is always going to make the majority of web site visitors smile. What are your thoughts on the color yellow? Is it the happiest color? Do you agree with my felt tip experiment in the YouTube video that all colors are affected by yellow? Let us know by commenting below and tell if you intend to use yellow for your web site design or branding.