Global Color Semiotics

I find the language of color fascinating. What words do you associate with any given hue? Do these associations line up across the country? What about across the world?
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PhD student Maryam Mohammadzadeh Darrodi is investigating just this very question.

Colour Selection for product Design
"Colour perception is a broad and complex aspect amongst artists, designers and scientists. Each of these groups have there own way of defining colour and explaining the effectiveness of different elements in colour selection. The process of colour selection in product design is directly dependent on the characteristics of the products and the nature of target markets: culture, geographical location, age and gender of the consumer, to list a few. Aim of this study is to identify and bridge this gap and find a convenient way to use the knowledge of these interconnected groups. As an outcome, a tool can be developed to help the designer with the key facts of colour selection based on the type of product."
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Her global survey presents a color and various descriptors, asking viewers to chose how closely they associate the hue with specific words.

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Is a color heavy or light? Soft or hard? The test is only 3 pages long, and you only get the opportunity to analyze one color. But you can retake the test as many times as you like, as each time you re-enter the site, a new color is presented.

I gather the finished product will be developed into graphic design software plugins for designers. By sliding various bars up and down, users can essentially "dial" in colors based on descriptors. I'm curious to see if there are universally-accepted definitions.

Take the survey and let us know what you think, then pass it on!