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The science behind colour

Colour is a sensation that we experience through our eyes with our brain. It is all around us, in variety of forms and shapes and we all interact with it. It adds spice to our lives and can affect the way we behave, feel, perceive or orientate ourselves in a given space.

Research has shown that colour can compensate vision deficiency – visually impaired people can navigate with more confidence in strong colour-contrasted environments as their sense of space and orientation is recreated by contrasting colours.

The colour we perceive is influenced by the context in which we see that colour. Lighting affects the appearance of a coloured wall. For example, a small patch of colour in a given wallpaper will look different from an entire room painted in that colour.

At ICI Paints we use our understanding of colour to describe it in a more user-friendly way. Colour, as perceived by the human brain through the eye, is tri-dimensional. One way of describing these three components is in terms of the hue, light reflectance value (LRV) and chroma.

These three components are brought together to form the Dulux Trade colour notation system.


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