June 18, 2018 • Sarah Schwartz
The Color Wheel: Ultra Violet
To the Future, Expressively
Pantone’s Color of The Year is rich in both mystery and mindfulness
Pantone established Ultra Violet as its 2018 Color of the Year, and despite its dark nature, it serves as a beacon while conquering any challenge. Communicating originality and ingenuity, it evokes musical icons Prince and Jimi Hendrix, tipping its hat to the counterculture, experimentation and non-conformity.
But this shade has been a while coming, emphasized Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director at the Pantone Color Institute and Director, Eiseman Center for Color Information and Training. “The purple family has been a steady grower ever since Radiant Orchid [was named Pantone Color of the Year] in 2014. Radiant Orchid has more of a red/pink base and Ultra Violet leans more to the blue side, making the color a bit more contemplative, intuitive, insightful, thoughtful, significantly attached to mindfulness — more ‘cerebral.’”
Ultra Violet’s vibe varies according to its finish. “A sheen adds more excitement to the color, while a matte finish is less eye-arresting,” underscored Eiseman, who recently published her 10thbook, The Complete Color Harmony. “However, color must always be thought of in terms of context— how and where is it to be used— and that will help to establish the finish as well as the color.”
Always enigmatic, Ultra Violet’s mood spans from romantic to calm depending its color pairings. Pantone’s palette Kindred Spirits, encompassed of shades of purple and pink, evokes frothy playfulness; meanwhile, Desert Sunset, pairing Ultra Violet with warm reds and oranges, is dramatic but still subdued.
Expect Ultra Violet to extend into at least next year, finished Eiseman. “As we’ve seen in the past, once consumers see the color of the year and the variety of usages, they become more accustomed to it and openly seek it out, and there are always those who follow trends, and they lead the way with the usage of the color. And that’s what trends are all about — pushing the “refresh” button!” — SS