The meaning of colors in video and film

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Cinema is an art form that has been contemplated in all its splendor, a creation that never ceases to dazzle millions of spectators. Through the centuries, it lives, adapts and always provides the same sensation.


Film lovers know it, they feel it. Beyond a thrilling viewing, strong sensations, hearts that beat loudly and tears that flow alone, hides a whole art, a whole mechanism that the world of cinema keeps disclosed.


The cinema, the videos that we watch, covers much more than just images taken or cuts. There is, of course, an indispensable element that, even today, remains the most captivating in the cinematographic art. This element is the color.


So, are you a film lover? Do you want to know the place of colors in the cinema and their meanings? Well, today I’m going to introduce you to colors in cinema.

The place of choice that colors occupy in the cinema

La place de choix qu’occupe les couleurs dans le cinéma

Cinema is a sparkling art, which transmits emotions, vibrations and intense moments that are imprinted in our memories. Yes, cinema is a living art that combines many things, including colors, which are perfect transmitters of messages and emotions.


Indeed, the colors in the videos are hardly the result of an arbitrary selection. Each color has something to express and to make appear. They bring information, transmit emotions and act on us without us realizing it.


In the cinema, the color has a function at the same time aesthetic, narrative and symbolic. They have an attribute that allows them to highlight a character (by clothing) or an object. In the same way, they are used to develop the imagination and the feelings of the spectators by directing them towards the good information and thus the good style of film.


In advertisements, the colors used are quite flash. They allow to capture the attention of the spectators more quickly.


You may not know it, but the color counts for 62 to 90% in the opinion that a customer will have on a product. This is probably why videographers and advertisers make sure to choose a color that is pleasing to the eye, noticeable in a second and recognizable afterwards.


As far as video clips are concerned, the colors are ambient. In recent years, we have seen a recurrence of red and purple. These colors, in addition to being aesthetic, transmit a festive, artistic and modern spirit.


In short, the colors chosen for the videos are not random. They are chosen for specific purposes and it is important to use such knowledge when designing any video.

The meaning of the colors used in the videos

Le sens des couleurs utilisées dans les vidéos

The colors, are indissociable variants of the cinema. They have a capital place and a real importance in the creation of videos. Whether it is red, blue, green, yellow, purple etc., they carry emotions and information. So, what does each of these colors represent in the videos?

The blue

The color blue is one of the most emblematic colors present in the cinema. Once underestimated or even neglected, it has slowly climbed the ladder to become an inseparable color of the cinematographic world. To be clear, it occupies a place of choice in all films that have crossed generations.

Used in many films, it has taken on the mantle of the color of good, good and safe. A cliché was quickly established, materializing the good guy in blue, the tunnel exit in blue, the accessories of the good guys in blue. Leaving the bad and dark side to red.

Thus, blue represents calm, loyalty, serenity, sadness or melancholy. In film, it is used to represent tranquility, isolation, escape and even fantasy when it is a little darker. When it is light, it represents dreams. However, when it is dark, it can also mean a peaceful death, a death in the order of things. Moreover, blue is the color of technology. It is therefore in this context a cold and emotionless color.

That said, it is a popular color, which reassures and calms.

The red

First of all present in two forms, the diurnal one and the nocturnal one, these colors have both a well defined specificity. Indeed the diurnal red is masculine and centrifugal, and the nocturnal red is feminine and centripetal.

It is a color that expresses love, anger, sensuality, courage, sexuality, danger, ardor and even prohibition. It is a color quite popular with the great world and the monarchs of yesteryear who saw in it glory, protection and power. It is also the color of the underworld and therefore of fire and suffering. It also represents blood.

The black

When we say “black” only one thing comes to mind, the incarnation of evil, the opposite of joy, of happiness. And you are right. But in the cinema, although it represents fear, sadness and wickedness, it has another connotation that I will make you discover.

Indeed, cultures, philosophy, and especially the rules have taken the trouble to expose the pejorative side of this color, translating it as nothingness, the color of death, the color of sin etc..

But it is more than that, it is not only the color of horror movies, of fear where evil remains hidden from the eyes of the world and ready to emerge, no. It is also the color of humility, temperance, elegance, normative and also scary.

It can also be the color of do-gooders. I am not teaching you anything. Many movie heroes have hidden under black capes to make justice triumph. This shows that black is not only this statement of bad.

The white

White is the color of purity and therefore of good and kind. It is used to represent the day, the light and therefore God and the angels. It is also the color of wisdom. This color is quite solicited to represent the beautiful, the noble, the solemn. However, it can turn to something less appreciated than the good, the kind and the pure.


Indeed, the drift of white is of course possible. How can it happen? Well, when excess enters the equation. A character who wants to enforce the law or impose the good by all means, or a character who goes to the dark side, he tends to become evil. And in this case, it’s the dark that takes care of restoring the balance by absorbing the darkness that had settled in.

The yellow

It is the color of gold, radiant and expresses positivity. Like the sun, it symbolizes power, strength, light and warmth. It is also the color of joy and celebration. However, when it tends towards brown, it can express nostalgia, the past or pleasant memories.

However, this color is not always synonymous with cheerfulness and radiance, it is also, when tarnished, the color of treachery, lies and pride.

The green

The green color often refers to nature. It is also the color that designates health, life. It also reflects many things that do not go together. It expresses life, luck, infidelity, betrayal, corruption, the supernatural, magic, Satan and finally money. It is a color that, like the others, although it has an appreciated side, has its dark side that the video artists do not fail to highlight.

The purple

It is a rather particular color since it merges the blue and red and since we could, with it, have colors like: the mauve, the blue violet and the red violet. Anyway it is a rather expressive color. Indeed, it is the color of temperance, passion, love, wisdom and intelligence. It is also the color of reflection and action. Moreover, it is representative of dreams, fantasy and fantasy.

The orange

Halfway between yellow and red, orange is a bright, illuminating color. It expresses movement and is a stimulating, joyful, optimistic and creative color. Moreover, it illustrates jealousy or lying and can be assimilated to adultery and dissimulation. It is, in short, a color that provides a lot of positive energy but still has a somewhat negligible dark side.

The pink

It’s no longer a mystery to anyone. Pink is the color of girls. In the videos, it always accompanies the girls. It is the color of seduction and romance. It reveals the woman on her most vulnerable day.

Also, it represents life and happiness. It is probably not appreciated by the vast majority of the public, but it is still a color that is quite impactful and can identify the sensuality, fragility and feminine softness.

Opinion on a film rich in image and color

Avis sur un film riche en image et en couleur

The world of cinema is quite fascinating, especially when you know its subtleties. I often let myself be overwhelmed by the intensity, the density of the emotions that certain videos offer.


Whether it’s the content of the video or its form, I am amazed by masterpieces that offer colors and images that take your breath away. I remember one film in particular: SPRING BREAKERS by Harmony Korine released in 2013. It’s a gorgeous film that is quite breathtaking in terms of colors and images.

It is a film that offers a shot of colors, flavors and strong sensations. We are facing a work that despite the festive atmosphere does not fail to express sad and macabre emotions. It is also a surprising film that offers shocking images that can only attract attention. It is, in short, a sensory film that puts forward exciting and crazy scenes, which make us appreciate a certain intensity in the images and in the colors.

It is true that this film has marked me, but it is all the more true that it has been subjected to many criticisms and comments on its form as well as its content.

So you, you are an artist, a creator or an author? … how do you live the era of mass content? What do you think of this work?


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