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Color In The Brain

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Thought some might be interested

Article by Betty Edwards, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, p231

Placing color in the brain

Given sufficient light to percieve colors, scientists also tell us that the brain's reaction to colors seem to depend on the differences in thinking modes of the various sections of the brain.

Very bright, intense colors (and colors that shine and glitter) draw a response from the so-called "primitive" brain, the limbic systems. This response is an emotional one, perhaps connected to our biological heritage of color as communication. For example, many people say, "When I get mad, I see red!" The inverse of this exclamation perhaps describes the situation whereby an intense red elicits an emotional, aggresive response.

The main role of L-mode, generally located in the left hemisphere, is to tag colors with names and attributed, such as "bright blue," "lemon yellow," or "burnt umber," and to translate into words our emotional reactions to colors.

Additionally, L-mode is specialized for designating sequenced steps in mixing colors- for example, "to mix orange, add yellow to red," or "to darken blue, add black."

The right hemisphere (or R-mode) is specialized for the perception of relationships of hues, particularly for subtle linkages of one hue to another. R-mode is biased toward discovering patterns of coherence, specifically toward combinations of hues that balance opposites- for example, red/green, blue/orange, dark/light, dull/bright.

In his 1976 essay "The Dialectics of Color," Dr. Peter Smith states: "Since the right hemisphere has a strong interest in the way things fit together to form a closed system, it may be said to be a decisive factor in the esthetic response." This closed system may be what artists speak of as unified, harmonious color- that is, color in relationship that are locked into balance. Perhaps R-mode recognizes the satisfying wholeness of properly unified color and reacts with a pleasurable sence of "Yes. That's it. That's right."

The converse is also tru: R-mode recognized unbalanced or disunified color arrangements and perhaps longs for unity and the missing parts of the closed system. An individual may experiance this longing as vague dislike- a sence that something is missing or out of place.

R-mode has another important role in color: seeing which combination of colors has produced a particular color. Given a range of grays, for example, R-mode sees which one is warmed with red, which is cooled with blue.

Hope you enjoy,from a favorite Art book.bo

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Don't get too excited David, this is all just theroretical :D but when I read this artical I understood that a marble is an art work that hits us on all levels,including primitive,emotional,dislike or "Yes that's it!"

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