Tuesday, August 18, 2015

GET REAL...... My A-Ha Moment, thanks to Renoir!!!

This summer, I've secretly been toying around with the idea of re-defining colour analysis and developing my OWN system of colour analysis.  I've found myself in a whirlpool of CONFUSION when trying to define myself within a 'season'.  I think I got closer to my truth when I understood that we are each unique and have our own palettes.  I then discovered a huge 'a-ha' idea - finding your best self is not just about understanding what colours suit you, its even more about knowing yourself and getting 'real' about who you are.  I can't tell you how many countless times I've seen a photo of Elizabeth Taylor in her youth and thought to myself - wow, she has these amazing bright-cool eyes and raven hair, what a stunning Bright Winter - I wonder if I could be a bright winter too, let's test this???  In the end, all I did was try to be something I'm not and also try to 'push' myself into a season where I don't belong - we all know that theory doesn't work and its a slap in the face to your own true self.  So this summer, I decided to 'Get Real'.........  I first decided to figure out all the things I know about colour analysis that really Piss Me Off:
1) A somewhat of a cliquish attitude concerning seasons - i.e. unless your analyzed by a particular person or type of analysis, you're just 'struggling' to find your season
2) Colour and judgement of colour is really in the eye of the beholder - we each see and process colour differently.  I can't tell you how many times on various Facebook groups, I'd hear someone say 'that colour looks amazing on you' and then seconds later, someone else will comment 'you look sick and horrible in that colour' - what about instead asking yourself 'how do YOU feel wearing that colour?' - lets face it, many of us are looking for acceptance and validation that we look good, but are we validating ourselves???
Which leads me to #3..........
3) Your own intuition knows what works and what doesn't.  I thought about the origins of colour analysis and one of the key founders of how we use colour analysis today - it really started with Johannes Itten, a Swiss painter - here is a little write up about him from Wikipedia :

 " The students chose colors, lines and orientation that showed themselves "as they are." To Itten, subjective color is "the aura of the person."[5] For example, a high contrast brunette will choose dark colors and high contrast, "suggesting a lively and concentrated personality and intense feeling." On the other hand, for a fair woman of low contrast the "fundamental contrast is hue."[6] He links these subjective colors to the four seasons of spring, summer, autumn, and winter and notes: "Every woman should know what colors are becoming to her; they will always be her subjective colors and their complements."[7] Itten believed that "subjective colors" were of a lower artistic value and significance than what he deemed "objective colors," color harmonies of a higher order." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_analysis_(art))

I've come to understand that you yourself are the best guide to understanding what colours work for you - you will be 'drawn' to those colours, you will know which ones make you come alive - you will instinctively choose your best colour palette.  The real injustice comes when YOU decide to put the opinions and suggestions of others above your own intuitive understanding of who you are.  I put the emphasis on 'YOU' because no one can force you to be something you're not, but if you don't 'know yourself' and if you aren't confident in the power of your own intuition, you'll easily give up your inner compass to listen to someone else.

I will admit that for many years I gave my power away to others to define what my best palette is, but I feel more and more that I'm reclaiming this power - I had to take a break from colour analysis because I needed time to define for myself who I am.  I literally surrounded myself with various palettes, looked at various pieces of art, took out all my season palette fans and just 'meditated' on what my inner guide knew to be true.  I also did some colour experiments in different lighting until I found the most natural lighting and best photos that represented what my colouring is really like - I found myself 'intuitively' knowing and feeling my best season.  It's one that I had experimented with quite a bit before, but I wasn't 'in tune' with it as much as I am now.  Here are the colours that really brought me to the right understanding of myself:

It all started when I was at the institute of Art in Chicago - I literally couldn't stop staring at Renoir's Painting 'The Child in the White Dress':

Everything about this painting spoke to me - I loved the peach-beige tones, the soft white, the golden tones, the beautiful blues - I literally could have stared at this painting ALL day if I could - I was 'mesmorized' and it hit me in that moment, that my personal energy was connected to this colour palette.  I thought at first that perhaps this colour palette was some sort of spring, perhaps light spring, but the overly bright corals just didn't work - When I finally did the natural flush test by looking at the natural red that comes up when you pinch your finger, this is what I saw:

When I did more of a close up, I noticed a clear pattern start to emerge - and it ALL connected to Renoir's painting 'Child in White Dress':

I saw the most beautiful shades of a lighter soft autumn palette.  I realized that something in me has always loved this palette but I denied Soft Autumn because I never saw it as 'attractive', but instead soft, boring and uninteresting - how wrong was I??? I couldn't get enough of Renoir's painting and there was nothing boring or uninteresting about it!  In fact, it was 'captivating, rich, feminine and elegant'  When I allow my intuition to guide me, there is nothing more harmonious than the Soft Autumn palette for me!!!

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