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  •  Lesson 2: A Historical Background 
     
    The source of all color is light. Light is what allows us to experience the miracle of color. Color defines for us what exists and what does not exist. 
     
    color wheelMany theories of color have been proposed throughout the ages. Primitive tribes decorated themselves with colors for visual effect. Greek philosophers believed that the eye emitted rays which bounced off objects and gave them color. Aristotle identified seven classes of color which he believed were nothing more than various mixtures of black and white. It was Leonardo da Vinci, the great Italian artist and inventor, who concluded that without light, there is no color.

    Not until 1672 was color fully demystified. That is when Sir Isaac Newton wrote, A Theory of Light and Color, which explained how white light, when passed through a triangular prism, spread out like rays of a fan to create a color spectrum. Newton was also the first to create a color wheel by joining the colors from the spectrum into a circle. His revolutionary observations and research concluded that white light contained all colors; blackness had none.

    Sir Isaac Newton also found each color had a different wave length which defines it from others. When these waves of light enter the eyes, they produce the sensation of illumination and color. Therefore, when an object appears to be a certain color, it is because the surface's molecular composition absorbs all light rays except the ones we see.
     
    Extensive studies by philosophers, psychologists, architects, doctors, interior designers, sociologists and scientists have proven that the effective use of color can increase workers' productivity, enhance the ability to concentrate and decrease worker fatigue.
     
    The colors we use to surround ourselves shows others our character, our self-esteem and our personality. Your home, workplace and town each have an atmosphere which defines your emotional state of mind and determines how others perceive you.

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