use of colors in painting and art has increased over the last five years
and I have become aware of how difficult it is to find a universal meaning
of color that can transcends the cultural boundaries in a similar way
that the symbols used in written language and mathematics have become
universal. In a failed quest to find universal color meaning, I hit upon
an idea of just mapping colors to a pre existing system that can hold
meaning, the alphabet. This type of mapping has been done in many ways
in the past, with musical composers mapping colors to sound and harmony,
computer artists mapping whole banks of words to millions of hues so that
visual grouping can take place quickly. All these ideas, while forming
an interesting system, did not meet my needs as a painter, as they could
not be rendered in a direct way on canvas.
Taking a cue from Phoenicians,
what I have done is to map a subset 26 distinct colors to a standardized
set of signs (English alphabet or graphemes) that will allow
me to construct meaning out of color directly and unambiguously using
the English system of language that I am already familiar with. These
26 colors are to be housed in a set of handmade glyphs that allow a reader
to more clearly navigate through the color data (although the use
of these glyphs are irrelevant as long as the colors are distinct, standardized
and the reader is given a direction for reading). The addition of
unique set of “punctuation symbols” developed in the font, allow the more
accurate mapping of meaning from a standard “glyph” based set of symbols
into the color.
The rules associated
with reading English text do not necessarily apply when reading color
text because of the symmetry of the glyphs. This difference has lead
to different way of representing texts. For example, it is assumed that
the reading be done from left to right but as the color swatches have
no orientation, readers need only be given the direction in which to begin
reading. This website is divided into several sections that represent
the process used in developing this system of writing with color as well
as links to online resources such as color converting algorithms, a set
of fonts for displaying color text, and several downloadable examples
of how the color font was used in my newer works.
of how we process text when reading.
2. How the 26 colors were chosen
for mapping to the alphabet.
3. The encoding process used to translate
existing textual data into color.
4. The development of the glyphs and
symbols used to represent the color alphabet.
5. Artistic examples using color text.
6. Potential problems associated with the
use of color as a form of writing.
7. Questions and ideas that arise from mapping
color and the alphabet.
8. Bibliographic information on color,
language and semiotics.
here for tools used to convert text to color-->
Example of RGB values of color Alphabet