Why some movies and TV shows now have a strange "yellow tint"

A decade ago, many movies had a blue tint added to them, apparently meant to convey a spooky or thrilling vibe. But there's also an extreme yellow tint to certain films, the latest example being the new Netflix movie Extraction. (Trailer above.) What's the deal with the mustard-colored movies? At the Matador Network, Elizabeth Sherman writes about the "yellow filter" and why some people find it offensive:

[...] It’s almost always used in movies that take place in India, Mexico, or Southeast Asia. Oversaturated yellow tones are supposed to depict warm, tropical, dry climates. But it makes the landscape in question look jaundiced and unhealthy, adding an almost dirty or grimy sheen to the scene. Yellow filter seems to intentionally make places the West has deemed dangerous or even primitive uglier than is necessary or even appropriate, especially when all these countries are filled with natural wonders that don’t make it to our screens quite as often as depictions of violence and poverty [...]

Yellow filter goes hand in hand with films that depict mostly negative stereotypes about living in the country in question, all while centering the journey of a white hero: Some combination of gangs, extreme poverty, drug use, and war seems to pop up in most of the movies that use yellow filter. Not only is it ugly and overused, but it reinforces stereotypes about people in countries that Americans still tend to think of as the “developing world.”

"Why does ‘yellow filter’ keep popping up in American movies? Read the rest

Online generator answers "What color is your name?"

"What Color is Your Name?" is a website that associates your name, or any name, with blocks of colors. The project's creator, Bernadette Sheridan, has grapheme–color synaesthesia, which means her brain perceives numerals and letters as very specific colors.

She explains:

...I am terrible at remembering names. I hear the name, but my mind is distracted. In my head, I am calculating the number of letters in the name, and visualizing the colors of each letter. Your name may be Emily, but to me, you’re a bright, happy swath of five letters with an “E” and an “I". When I meet you again later, I may think your name is Emily or Jille or Ellie. Five letters, with an “I” and an “e.”

Sheridan also offers, at a reasonable price, your name-color portraits as prints.

(Coudal Partners)

screengrab via "What Color is Your Name?"

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Meet Pantone 448 C, "The ugliest color in the world"

According to Wikipedia, Pantone 448 C has been dubbed "The ugliest colour in the world."

Described as a "drab dark brown," it was selected in 2016 as the colour for plain tobacco and cigarette packaging in Australia, after market researchers determined that it was the least attractive colour. The Australian Department of Health initially referred to the color as "olive green," but the name was changed after concerns were expressed by the Australian Olive Association.

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T-Mobile: because we have a (stupid) trademark on one magenta shade, no one can use pink in their logos

T-Mobile has a trademark on RAL 4010, a shade of magenta. Trademarks on colors (see also: UPS, John Deere) are a dangerous trend, robbing us of the spectrum one shade at a time, but T-Mobile's views on its trademark made this bad situation much worse. Read the rest

Pantone coffee mugs to match how you take it

Here's a little something for artsy wired types. Pantone has a number of colorful mugs, some of which may match how you take your favorite hot beverage. Note: they do not seem to have any dark enough for how many of our dear readers prefer. Read the rest

How to make trippy fluid art with a few simple supplies

Nicky James Burch demonstrates her technique for making vibrant psychedelic liquid art with basic acrylic paint. Looks like a fun kids' project! Read the rest

Pantone announces new color honoring Prince

The Pantone Color Institute announced "Love Symbol #2," a shade of purple honoring Prince. A collaboration with Prince's estate, the hue, actually labeled with Prince's logo, is now the official color of his brand. From CNN:

Pantone has long been the authority on color trends and design. Since 2000, the corporation has released a "Color of the Year" that influences design and marketing. Laurie Pressman, vice president of the Pantone Color Institute, said in a statement that it was an honor to help develop Prince's hue.

"A musical icon known for his artistic brilliance, Love Symbol #2 is emblematic of Prince's distinctive style," she said. "Long associated with the purple family, Love Symbol #2 enables Prince's unique purple shade to be consistently replicated and maintain the same iconic status as the man himself."

I only wanted to see you bathing in the Love Symbol #2 rain.

(Pantone) Read the rest

AI paint color names improving, sort of

The AI paint name generator (previously) has refined its preferences. Though still very bad at naming paint colors, there seems to be (to my mind) an emerging personality, one that has beliefs and, perhaps, opinions about its creators.

Pictured at the top of this post, for reference, is the human-named classic Opaque Couché.

Latest experiments reveal AI is still terrible at naming paint colors [Ars Technica] Read the rest

Real words that work as CSS colors for your website

In CSS, the style markup that goes with HTML, colors are encoded as hexadecimal RGB values of either 3 or 6 letters. This means that certain words, such as EFFACE and FACADE, are legitimate CSS colors. Allow for substitutions, such as 0 for O, and a full gamut presents itself, with BIOTIC and OTITIS and so on. c0ffee.surge.sh is a beautiful collection of all the words that work. Read the rest

Why are doughnut boxes usually pink?

At the Los Angeles Times, David Pierson unties the story of why doughnut boxes are so frequently pink, particularly in southern California. It's a story of Cambodian refugees who emigrated to the US in the 1970s and built the donut market. But why pink? From the LA Times:

According to (Bakemark, formerly Westco) company lore, a Cambodian doughnut shop owner asked Westco some four decades ago if there were any cheaper boxes available other than the standard white cardboard. So Westco found leftover pink cardboard stock and formed a 9-by-9-by-4-inch container with four semicircle flaps to fold together. To this day, people in the business refer to the box as the “9-9-4.”

“It’s the perfect fit for a dozen doughnuts,” said Jim Parker, BakeMark’s president and chief executive.

More importantly to the thrifty refugees, it cost a few cents less than the standard white. That’s a big deal for shops that go through hundreds, if not thousands, of boxes a week. It didn’t hurt either that pink was a few shades short of red, a lucky color for the refugees, many of whom are ethnic Chinese. White, on the other hand, is the color of mourning.

Len Bell, president of Evergreen Packaging in La Mirada, first noticed the proliferation of pink boxes as a regional manager for Winchell’s in the early 1980s. Back in the Southland after a few years in Minnesota, Bell was amazed to see the doughnut business seemingly transformed overnight by Cambodian refugees, who proved quick studies and skillful businesspeople.

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Paint names selected by neural network

We can't be far off a time where we can order buckets of paint by punching in RGB color values. The big paint companies could obviously do this, but right now all they seem to offer are elaborate, bloated interfaces wrapping their own marketing-driven color schemes. And I'll grant that the paint pigment gamut might have some very weakly-covered areas, lightfastedness issues, and so on. I hope whoever eventually does this (brand suggestion: LATHEX) also creates a robust API for it and a affiliate program, so that Paint Colors Invented By Neural Network can be tested and refined against thousands of actual purchases. Read the rest

Why are so many cartoon characters yellow?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-7H10zweVU

The Simpsons, SpongeBob Squarepants, Minions, Pikachu are yellow. So are many, many other popular cartoon characters. Why? The answer lies at the intersection of psychology, color theory, and, of course, aesthetics. (ChannelFrederator)

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Beautifully color-coded watershed maps of America

You can buy high-res versions on Etsy, with Europe and other countries also on offer.

High resolution map of all the permanent and temporary streams and rivers of the contiguous 48 states in beautiful rainbow colours, divided into catchment areas. It shows Strahler Stream Order Classification. The higher the stream order, the thicker the line. Map made mostly with the open-source QGIS software.

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Skittles trick turns plate into a rainbow

Simple DIY rainbow magic with Skittles candies. Form a circle with Skittles on a plate (colours should be in repeated order, preferably according to colours of the rainbow e.g. purple, green, yellow, orange, red), then pour hot water over them. Wait for the magic to unfold right in front of your eyes

Also funny are the various YouTubers attempting to replicate the effect only to end up with a brownish mix of melted candy slime on their plate. Read the rest

The most popular website colors

This image depicts the most commonly-found stylesheet colors on the web's top sites—Paul Hebert did an amazing amount of analysis and this is just one of the intriguing visualizations he came up with.

Most of these are obvious staples, especially HTML red and blue, though it's interesting how far the blue "cluster" is from the default blue hue, whereas the red cluster merely modifies the saturation and lightness. This might be influenced by various "studies" of the most effective link color.

The odd thing is the popularity of #d2b48c (triggered by the "Tan" HTML color name), which appears to be the single most popular nonblack color after #0000FF (HTML Blue) and #FF0000 (HTML Red). Google uses it somewhere (though I don't see it) Is everyone just following the leader? (UPDATE: see below)

UPDATE: Hebert explains the Tan thing in the comments.

UPDATE: 10/22/2016. Hebert's updated his method to exclude false positives (including the mysterious Tan) Read the rest

Video feedback emulator generates gorgeous glitchy art

Thea video feedback emulator offers a vague memory of fooling with video cameras and a strong flavor of crisp and fractal generative art, The results lurk somewhere between the decades. Click and drag your results for wild (and often brightly-flickering) variations. The creator explains how it works. [via Github]

What we’ve found most interesting about video feedback is: the sheer complexity of the images it produces through such simply-defined and implemented spacemaps that really only have to do with the relative positioning of two rectangles. It’s somewhat intuitive, but always surprising.

This is all just scratching the surface of the mathematics behind the patterns that video feedback is capable of, but hopefully it’s good enough for a start!

P.S. You’ll notice that many of the “interesting” patterns contain regions of diverse sizes. That is, they appear to have a broad range of spatial frequencies. What’s up with that?

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World's "ugliest color" will be used on cigarette packs

According to an Australian survey, the shit brown color seen above (Pantone 448C, or "Opaque Couché") is the ugliest hue around, reminding respondents of dirt and death. To deter smoking, Australian officials required Opaque Couché to be the main color and cigarette packages and now the UK is following suit. Apparently, Australian officials first referred to the color as "olive green" but the Australian Olive Association was none-too-pleased. Now, Pantone is grumpy about the choice of Opaque Couché.

"At the Pantone Color Institute, we consider all colours equally,” Pantone's exec director Leatrice Eiseman told The Guardian. "(There's no such thing as the ugliest color."

The new UK regulations also ban the use of logos, requiring a plain font on the packs.

More at Smithsonian: "The World’s "Ugliest" Color Could Help People Quit Smoking" Read the rest

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