In one of our earlier #yegvote Hangouts, my colleague Ryan Hastman remarked on the similarity of colors between the three primary mayoral candidates. We joked about his color theory and moved on, but recently I found myself looking at campaign colors again. What colors are most common in this election? What do they mean?
That color grid represents the primary color of all 119 campaigns. They were generated by: taking a screenshot of the candidate’s website and/or Twitter page; identifying the primary color of each using Color Thief; and doing some post-processing on the results. The white boxes are for candidates that either do not have a website or Twitter page, or that have a Twitter page with the default settings (a shockingly large number fall into this category).
While it was a fun exercise, this also serves a purpose for me. ShareEdmonton’s list of candidates has now been updated with colors, and where appropriate/possible, I’ll use these colors to represent candidates on the election night results dashboard (you can see the 2010 results dashboard with color-coding here).
There are a lot of blues, greens, and purples. Fewer red, yellow, and orange. Does this mean anything? Let’s look at Paper Leaf Design’s handy color theory quick reference poster:
Check out the full poster for all the detail, but here are some election-related highlights:
- Red often means intensity, strength, and energy.
- Blue often means depth, stability, and trust.
- Purple often means power, ambition, and nobility.
- Green often means growth, freshness, and safety.
- Yellow often means intellect, cheerfulness, and energy.
- Orange often means enthusiasm, creativity, and warmth.
Do candidates and their campaign teams think about these things when choosing colors?
Perhaps more importantly, do campaign colors matter to you as a voter?