From studying biophilia, we know that natural elements like wood veneers have a profound effect on people in interior environments—especially in healthcare. But what about colors?
Our white paper, Impact of Interior Design on Autistic Adults and Children, reminded us of the effects thoughtful uses of color can have. So over the last few months we’ve taken a closer look at how color not only benefits design aesthetic, but also stimulates creativity, increases communication or prompts productivity for the end users of the space.
Let’s take a step back: Since the times of the Ancient Egyptians and Ancient Greeks, color was used as a healing power. That still holds true today in healthcare environments, where color has been known to have an influence on behavior, mood and attitude.
The color palette of healthcare settings often reflects that of nature: Calming greens ranging from the brightness of new growth to deep greens if summer, vibrant pops of color that reflect blooming flowers, and the warm, rich hues that reflect the leaves of fall. Incorporating these colors in place of white, which often evokes a cold and institutional feeling, sooths, helps calm patients and promotes healing.
By contrast, thoughtful use of vibrant colors in corporate settings can create a desired atmosphere that empowers employees. For instance, warm colors like yellow, orange and red energize employees and stimulate innovative ideas. Specifically, red can increase brain wave activities, heart rates and respiration—igniting creativity. However, these colors can also over-stimulate so it’s best to use them as accents in office settings. A good counter to these stimulating colors are blues and greens. They have a calming effect, causing employees to feel more relaxed. Green can even reduce eyestrain for employees who use computers all day.
So whether using color as a bold accent or as the energizing element in a room, using color in commercial spaces stimulates our minds and leads to a more positive and productive results.
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