The Color Effect
Colors are a part of one’s everyday life and are introduced into one’s life starting at birth. For example, when a baby is born, the baby is showered with gifts and the color of the gifts is determined by his or her gender. For girls, the gift would be a shade of pink and for boys, the gift would be blue (Tanfer Tunc, 2013). Furthermore, as individuals age and as their vocabulary increases, they tend to learn about associations between moods and colors. “I’m green with envy” or “I’ve got the blues” are common phrases used when describing feelings. Most research about the psychology of colors involves preference between colors and moods, and thus, the present study seeks to examine whether manipulating the colors of questionnaires will influence one’s self-reported mood.
An individual’s mood can be described as depicting the emotional state which is divided into two broad dimensions: positive and negative affect. Positive affect is characterized as the extent to which one experiences pleasurable engagement with the environment (Auke Tellegen and David Watson, 1999). On the other hand, negative affect is characterized as distress and negative emotional states (Watson, 1999). Descriptors of positive affect include: active, alert, attentive, enthusiastic, interested, or joyful. Negative affect descriptors include: afraid, nervous, hostile, guilty, or sad.
Mark Meerum Terwogt and Jan B. Hoeksma (1995) examined whether individuals’ separate preference order for colors and emotions is used when making connections between colors and emotions. The authors used three age groups: seven year olds, eleven year olds, and adults. The results suggest that as one ages, the effect of color and emotion preferences decreases, especially during adulthood. Moreover, adults were less likely to associate blue with happiness even though both were rank high in their preference scale. Rather the adults tended to link yellow and happiness together even...