The meaning and connections of colour in Graphic Facilitation


Yep, that’s right, you read right. Now humour me. Close your eyes for a sec and mull the colour red over in your mind. What do you think of? What else springs to mind? What images do you imagine?

You see we don’t often take the time to consider the effects different colours have on us and to think about the power of different shades.

Certain colours mean different things to different people. Everyone has a favourite colour and they have a colour that they just do not like at all. A particular colour can captivate, inspire or evoke memories for one person, but the very same colour can haunt, shock and scare another.

Colours can have different meanings that vary depending on cultural context and interpretation and different circumstances.

Personal meaning:

When Graphic Recording for anyone, it is always good to ask the individual or group what colours they would prefer us to use or what their favourite colour is. It is also helps to ask them what colours they don’t like and whether they would like us to avoid those colours.

By doing this, the Graphic Recorder can use all their fave colours for the positive sections of the graphic and use the colours they don’t like for the less positive sections, or for something that they might see as a negative on the graphic. This approach then creates a clear visual of what is positive and what is not.

Personally, for me, the colour green reminds me of my gran and my mum. When I think of purple I think of Imagineer. Colours mean different things to different people and it is definitely each to their own.

The Rainbow:

In this section I will list a couple of the different colour meanings. This is obviously not the full range of meanings that each colour can hold and, like I said before, it is each to their own but it’s always a good idea to be aware of the common significance of various colours.


…is the colour of anger, passion, danger, action and love.


…is the colour of confidence, summer, the sun, sickness and positivity.

Yellow is also a great colour for highlighting important information on a graphic recording.


Is the colour of love, sweetness, innocence and can “stereotypically” represent women/girls…although not all girls/women like the colour.


…is the colour of nature, growth, positivity, envy and greed.


…is the colour of warmth, cheerfulness and confidence!


…is the colour of royalty, Imagineer, creativeness and can be viewed as a spiritual colour.


…is the colour of water (rivers/ocean/rain), cold, sadness (‘feeling blue)’ and can also be spiritual and “stereotypically” represents men/boys.


…is the colour of protection, formal and sophisticated but can also symbolise depression, sadness, mystery and power.

Tip: No True Colours:

By no true colours I mean a tree doesn’t have to be drawn in brown and green and the sunshine necessarily doesn’t have to be yellow and orange. It could be any colour. A lot of the time the best graphics are the ones that are made up of the most random colours that stand out from the norm.


So, what do different colours mean to you? What’s your favourite colour and why? What’s your least preferred colour and the reasons behind your preference? Let us know over on Facebook!

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