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Many books and articles have been aimed at examining the psychology of color, but not all of them are of high quality. This paper will review the article Psychological Properties of Colors written by Angela Wright (2011). Overall, it is hardly appropriate for students or scholars, because the author does not provide any evidence to support her claims. Moreover, many of the writer’s statements are not even testable.
The information presented by the author cannot be of any use to a person who studies psychology. The author uses concepts and makes statements that cannot be considered scientific or even testable.
For instance, the writer says, “Blue is the colour of the mind and is essentially soothing; it affects us mentally, rather than the physical reaction we have to red” (Wright, 2011, unpaged). The article is full of such sentences, and one cannot say that they are psychological statements that identify relationships between causes and effects. Thus, they are not relevant to any particular field.
Expertise of the author
The article does not provide information about the educational background of Angela Wright. In contrast, peer-reviewed studies usually tell the readers much more about the authors (Martinez & Peterson, 2008, p. 78). I learned that she studies psychoanalytical psychology and later began research on unconscious effects of color (Scanlan, 2011, p. 255).
Viewpoint of Author/Organization Intended Audience
Angela Wright (2011) supports an idea that the use of color can reflect the inner world of a person. For instance, she argues that grey color can be associated with depression or lack of confidence (Wright, 2011, unpaged).
Yet, psychologists are usually very cautious when they discuss the connections between color and personality because it is difficult to prove such connections empirically (Picard & Lebaz 2011, p. 187). For instance, in their study Delphine Picard and Samuel Lebaz (2011) report that only continuous use of dark colors during free drawing can be linked to a negative emotional state (p. 187).
However, in most cases, there is no evidence to say that colors can reflect personality. Thus, Angela Wright’s views are not always supported by researchers. Additionally, this article is intended for people who do not know very much about the peculiarities of color perception. One can also assume that these readers do not study this question at a professional level.
Probably, the most significant limitation is the lack of evidence. The writer does not provide any empirical evidence showing that color can be associated with a specific mood, personality type, or emotions. The author does not refer to any studies that can help readers verify the information presented in the article. Thus, Angela Wright does not back up any of her claims. This is the critical drawback of this article.
It has to be admitted that this article has been published fairly recently, namely in 2011. However, the limitations that have already been identified completely invalidate the ideas that Angela Wright expresses.
Martinez, D. & Peterson, T. (2008). Kaplan Technical Writing: A Resource for Technical Writers at All Levels. New York: Kaplan Publishing.
Picard, D., & Lebaz, S. (2010). Symbolic use of size and color in freehand drawing of the tree: myth or reality?. Journal Of Personality Assessment, 92(2), 186-188.
Scanlan, N. (2011). Complementary Medicine for Veterinary Technicians and Nurses. London: John Wiley & Sons.
Wright, A. (2011). Psychological Properties of Colors. Retrieved from: http://www.colour-affects.co.uk/psychological-properties-of-colours