“Blue, darkly, deeply, beautifully blue.” – Robert Southey
“Blue color is everlastingly appointed by the deity to be a source of delight.” – John Ruskin
“A certain blue enters your soul.” – Henri Matisse
Ultramarine – “The most perfect of all colors,” Cennino Cennini
“Sometimes called ‘true blue,’ ultramarine is made from the semiprecious gemstone lapis lazuli, which for centuries could only be found in a single mountain range in Afghanistan.
Lapis first appeared as a pigment in the 6th century. Around 700 years later, the pigment traveled to Venice and soon became the most sought-after color in medieval Europe. For centuries, the cost of lapis rivaled the price of gold.
Legend has it that Michelangelo left his painting The Entombment (1500–01) unfinished because he could not generate the funds to buy ultramarine blue. Raphael used the pigment scarcely, applying it above base layers of azurite when depicting the Virgin Mary’s blue robe. The Baroque master Vermeer, on the other hand, bought the color in spades, so much so that his indulgence pushed his family into debt.” http://www.artsy.net
“Indigo is a natural dye rather than a pigment for painting. It was used to color fabrics, clothing, yarns, and luxurious tapestries. Unlike lapis lazuli, whose rarity drove its high prices, the indigo crop could be grown in excess and produced across the world, from India to South Carolina.
Commonly considered a shade of blue, indigo is not a separate color in its own right, so why does it get its own band in the rainbow?
Indigo dyeing was especially popular in England, home to physicist Sir Isaac Newton. Newton believed that the rainbow should consist of seven distinct colors to match the seven days of the week, the seven notes in the musical scale, and the seven known planets. Confronting the fact that the rainbow only displayed five unique colors, Newton pushed indigo, along with orange, much to the dismay of some contemporary scientists.” www.artsy.net
“Jean fabric was first produced in Genoa, Italy, in the 17th century; the French city of Nimes copied the technique shortly after (“de Nimes” aka “denim”). The cotton twill fabric, dyed with indigo, was sturdy and washable, making it perfect for workers.” www.artsandculture.google.com
“Blue has more complex and contradictory meanings than any other color.
Dark blue: trust, dignity, intelligence, authority
Bright blue: cleanliness, strength, dependability, coolness
(The origin of these meanings arise from the qualities of the ocean and inland waters, most of which are more tangible.)
Light (sky) blue: peace, serenity, ethereal, spiritual, infinity
(The origin of these meanings is the intangible aspects of the sky.)
Most blues convey a sense of trust, loyalty, cleanliness, and understanding. On the other hand, blue evolved as symbol of depression in American culture. “Singing the blues” and feeling blue” are good examples of the complexity of color symbolism and how it has been evolved in different cultures.” http://www.colormatters.com
“Pink for girls and blue for boys is a surprisingly recent tendency. Even as late as 1927 some fashion stores recommended pink for boys.” http://www.express.co.uk
For a fascinating book on color, read Victoria Finlay’s books.
Images from my Pinterest board on color