Paula Bailey

October 2, 2010

Photographer’s Blues

I’m working on a new blog post but in the meantime I thought I’d share another colour collection with you.

Several years ago, when I was still using film exclusively and before I’d even heard of Flickr (can you imagine a world without Flickr now?) I started to photograph things that were blue.  It was the beginning of a new relationship with the colour for me.  I never really liked blue.  It was my grandmother’s favourite colour (we lived with my grandparents) and there was a lot of it around the house.  It was her colour.   Not mine.  I never wore it, never chose it for furnishings, never sought it out.  This wasn’t a deliberate shunning of blue, but it just wasn’t ‘me’.

In some ways, my ‘blue’ project was all the more interesting for that reason.  It was brand new to me and I collected it fervently.  For a couple of months it became a bit of an obsession – I saw it everywhere.

Proper cobalt blue is described as a ‘cool’ blue and technically it is.  However, as is the case with all colour perception, we are rarely (as observers) all that ‘technical’ about it, and my collection below inevitably shows some ‘warmer’ (towards purple) variations on the theme.  As designers or printers, of course, we need to be more discerning in our descriptions, but we’re not going to get bogged down with that here.

It seems a little clinical on school books and ‘important’ signs, but jollies up dull things like doors and machines.

This blue is now my blue. How do you perceive it?

Cobalt Blue

Some images from my blue collection. One of these was taken on film - when it all began.

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11 Comments »

  1. Fantastic set of images. Blue is my favourite colour 🙂

    Comment by Sandy @ Shots — October 2, 2010 @ 3:18 pm | Reply

    • I see you like one of my favourite artists too – I’ve just been sorting through my Antony Gormley photos. 🙂

      Comment by Paula Bailey — October 3, 2010 @ 4:49 pm | Reply

  2. I keep telling myself to work on some color themes (a lot of neat reds around my town), but I never seem to shoot enough color film. I’m too in love with black and white, I guess.

    Comment by iheartfilm — October 2, 2010 @ 4:28 pm | Reply

    • Maybe you could pop a colour film in and go out with the specific aim of capturing those reds!

      Comment by Paula Bailey — October 2, 2010 @ 10:03 pm | Reply

  3. The way to my heart! As a collector of cobalt blue glass for (um… er…) 44 years, I’ve always been drawn to the deep blue-purple as a magical and even mystical color for me. How I perceive it is very strict for my own collection. The deeper the blue the better and there must always be a cast of purple: never the slight green or royal blue for me. Real cobalt glass does not contain copper in the mix and it used to be mainly imported from Poland years ago. Now, I am sure synthetic minerals are used for the chemistry but no matter the technical composition, it is the spiritually and peace I feel that makes this color so special to me. Thank you very much for a fine post and images. Your blue photos are a true delight.

    Comment by cobalt123 — October 3, 2010 @ 4:13 pm | Reply

    • Thank you – it’s always interesting to hear how other people perceive things. I’m glad you like the post. 🙂

      Comment by Paula Bailey — October 3, 2010 @ 4:50 pm | Reply

  4. […] times have you discussed the colour of something, only to have one person state that a thing is blue, and another to argue that it is green?  Does that make it turquoise by default?  It seems […]

    Pingback by Turquoise is all in the mind « Paula Bailey — October 4, 2010 @ 11:49 am | Reply

  5. Blue is my favorite color, particularly in combination with green, and in the greener shades of blue (like turquoise or aqua). But I also like the cooler or more purplish shades. It’s just my favorite color, and has always been.

    Comment by Gabi — October 6, 2010 @ 6:06 pm | Reply

  6. […] Photographer’s Blues […]

    Pingback by Oranges Poranges « Paula Bailey — December 16, 2010 @ 6:27 pm | Reply

  7. […] Photographer’s Blues […]

    Pingback by Yellow Fever « Paula Bailey — February 4, 2011 @ 5:38 pm | Reply

  8. […] Photographer’s Blues […]

    Pingback by Arsenic Green « Paula Bailey — February 4, 2011 @ 5:56 pm | Reply


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