Color = emotion

Ann Swanson

Have you ever realized that certain colors evoke certain emotions? For instance, the color pink reminds me that I am a cancer survivor. On Mother’s Day, we watched a baseball game with all of the players wearing some pink in honor of their mothers. I had no idea they did that. I knew about the pink worn by football players during the month of October, but I had no idea that baseball also honored cancer survivors.

Our world is filled with so many beautiful colors that it is impossible to name them all. In school, I taught the children about colors and how to mix the primary colors to create other colors. The primary colors being red, blue, and yellow. We often did this with crayons.

Do you suppose that Crayola ever envisioned the popularity of their crayons? I remember having some crayons by a company that I think was Prang. They were a harder crayon that did not work as well as those by Crayola.

My first box of 48 (wow really, I had that many colors to choose from) was a Christmas gift I suppose from Santa. I found out that the 48-color box was introduced in 1949. I was about six then so I probably got my box then. I also found out that the 64-color box came out in 1958, complete with a crayon sharpener.

I was thrilled to get that big box of crayons. As a child, I loved to color and create things. I had a craft box of stencils, colored paper, scissors, paste, and crayons. The box was deep so it held a lot of stuff. Whenever I was in the mood to create something, I got out my box. I made cards for people. I made gifts for people. Of course, I made my own Valentines.

I love color and think I have lived a colorful life. My favorite outfits were always something with vivid colors. I wear a lot of blue and red. I also have gotten to like shades of purple.

After I had a color analysis done, I realized that I look best in things that are colorful – bright colors are best for me. I have even left a note to my children that when I die, they should dress me in something colorful – that is my style.

When I was teaching school, I had a book about how crayons are made. I think I shared that with most of the classes I taught. The book did a good job of showing how crayons are made. I think I bought the book through a book fair. When I traveled to the world of Crayola crayons, I discovered that the book was true to life. Of course, the book only showed the basic eight colors.

I remember entering a contest to name a new color. I do not even remember what my choice was but it was exciting to wait to see the name that was chosen. Of course, I did not win, but oh well, it was fun. They ran a contest during the 100th birthday (2003) of crayons, so that was probably it.

In 1993, the 90th anniversary, they introduced the 96-color box. Another interesting fact is that during Fred Rogers show “Mister Roger’s Neighborhood”, the 100-billionth Crayola crayon was made. It was called the “blue ribbon”. One million “blue ribbon specials” were made and sold in commemorative boxes. The actual 100-billionth crayon is in the museum in Easton, PA.

In a book that I purchased from 2003, it was noted that Binney & Smith (Edwin Binney and C. Harold Smith) also make “540 Crayola colored pencils, 425 million markers, 90 million sticks of chalk, 6 million Silly Putty eggs, and 1.5 million jars of paint per year”.

Would you believe that Binney and Smith began their company with pigment for red barn paint? Little did I know when I started this piece the tie to the agricultural industry. I found that fact part way through my reading about crayons. They also made the black pigment that was used for tires.

I look forward to the array of color produced by the flowers along the roadside. Wildflowers are some of my favorites. I have the orange daylilies planted by my white fence thanks to my husband who knew they were some of my favorite flowers. I also love brown-eyed Susan’s but I have not been able to get them to grow up here. I have planted them many times but have nothing to show for my trouble.

When I see the color yellow, I think of a sunny day. When I see the green, I think of the green grass. The color blue reminds me of the sky with the puffy white clouds. Purple is a regal color that reminds me of royalty. Orange and black remind me of Halloween. Red and green remind me of Christmas. Red is for Valentines. White is for weddings and for snow.

Think of your own rainbow of color. How do you associate colors?

Ann Swanson writes from her home in Russell, PA. Contact at hickoryheights1@verizon.net.


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