A study of colour emotion and colour preference. Part III: Colour preference modeling

Li Chen Ou, M. Ronnier Luo, Andrée Woodcock, Angela Wright

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193 Citations (Scopus)


In this study three colour preference models for single colours were developed. The first model was developed on the basis of the colour emotions, clean-dirty, tense-relaxed, and heavy-light. In this model colour preference was found affected most by the emotional feeling "clean." The second model was developed on the basis of the three colour-emotion factors identified in Part I, colour activity, colour weight, and colour heat. By combining this model with the colour-science-based formulae of these three factors, which have been developed in Part I, one can predict colour preference of a test color from its colour-appearance attributes. The third colour preference model was directly developed from colour-appearance attributes. In this model colour preference is determined by the colour difference between a test colour and the reference colour (L*, a*, b*) = (50, -8, 30). The above approaches to modeling single-colour preference were also adopted in modeling colour preference for colour combinations. The results show that it was difficult to predict colour-combination preference by colour emotions only. This study also clarifies the relationship between colour preference and colour harmony. The results show that although colour preference is strongly correlated with colour harmony, there are still colours of which the two scales disagree with each other.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)381-389
Number of pages9
JournalColor Research and Application
Issue number5
Early online date26 Jul 2004
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Colour combination
  • Colour emotion
  • Colour harmony
  • Colour meaning
  • Colour preference
  • Colour psychology
  • Cross-cultural study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)

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