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Color and psychological functioning: a review of theoretical and empirical work

In the past decade there has been increased interest in research on color and psychological functioning. Important advances have been made in theoretical work and empirical work, but there are also important weaknesses in both areas that must be addressed for the literature to continue to develop apace. In this article, I provide brief theoretical and empirical reviews of research in this area, in each instance beginning with a historical background and recent advancements, and proceeding to an evaluation focused on weaknesses that provide guidelines for future research. I conclude by reiterating that the literature on color and psychological functioning is at a nascent stage of development, and by recommending patience and prudence regarding conclusions about theory, findings, and real-world application.

The past decade has seen enhanced interest in research in the area of color and psychological functioning. Progress has been made on both theoretical and empirical fronts, but there are also weaknesses on both of these fronts that must be attended to for this research area to continue to make progress. In the following, I briefly review both advances and weaknesses in the literature on color and psychological functioning.

Theoretical Work

Background and recent developments.

Color has fascinated scholars for millennia ( Sloane, 1991 ; Gage, 1993 ). Theorizing on color and psychological functioning has been present since Goethe (1810) penned his Theory of Colors , in which he linked color categories (e.g., the “plus” colors of yellow, red–yellow, yellow–red) to emotional responding (e.g., warmth, excitement). Goldstein (1942) expanded on Goethe’s intuitions, positing that certain colors (e.g., red, yellow) produce systematic physiological reactions manifest in emotional experience (e.g., negative arousal), cognitive orientation (e.g., outward focus), and overt action (e.g., forceful behavior). Subsequent theorizing derived from Goldstein’s ideas has focused on wavelength, positing that longer wavelength colors feel arousing or warm, whereas shorter wavelength colors feel relaxing or cool ( Nakashian, 1964 ; Crowley, 1993 ). Other conceptual statements about color and psychological functioning have focused on general associations that people have to colors and their corresponding influence on downstream affect, cognition, and behavior (e.g., black is associated with aggression and elicits aggressive behavior; Frank and Gilovich, 1988 ; Soldat et al., 1997 ). Finally, much writing on color and psychological functioning has been completely atheoretical, focused exclusively on finding answers to applied questions (e.g., “What wall color facilitates worker alertness and productivity?”). The aforementioned theories and conceptual statements continue to motivate research on color and psychological functioning. However, several other promising theoretical frameworks have also emerged in the past decade, and I review these frameworks in the following.

Hill and Barton (2005) noted that in many non-human animals, including primate species, dominance in aggressive encounters (i.e., superior physical condition) is signaled by the bright red of oxygenated blood visible on highly vascularized bare skin. Artificial red (e.g., on leg bands) has likewise been shown to signal dominance in non-human animals, mimicking the natural physiological process ( Cuthill et al., 1997 ). In humans in aggressive encounters, a testosterone surge produces visible reddening on the face and fear leads to pallor ( Drummond and Quay, 2001 ; Levenson, 2003 ). Hill and Barton (2005) posited that the parallel between humans and non-humans present at the physiological level may extend to artificial stimuli, such that wearing red in sport contests may convey dominance and lead to a competitive advantage.

Other theorists have also utilized a comparative approach in positing links between skin coloration and the evaluation of conspecifics. Changizi et al. (2006) and Changizi (2009) contend that trichromatic vision evolved to enable primates, including humans, to detect subtle changes in blood flow beneath the skin that carry important information about the emotional state of the conspecific. Increased red can convey anger, embarrassment, or sexual arousal, whereas increased bluish or greenish tint can convey illness or poor physiological condition. Thus, visual sensitivity to these color modulations facilitates various forms of social interaction. In similar fashion, Stephen et al. (2009) and Stephen and McKeegan (2010) propose that perceivers use information about skin coloration (perhaps particularly from the face, Tan and Stephen, 2012 ) to make inferences about the attractiveness, health, and dominance of conspecifics. Redness (from blood oxygenization) and yellowness (from carotenoids) are both seen as facilitating positive judgments. Fink et al. (2006) and Fink and Matts (2007) posit that the homogeneity of skin coloration is an important factor in evaluating the age, attractiveness, and health of faces.

Elliot and Maier (2012) have proposed color-in-context theory, which draws on social learning, as well as biology. Some responses to color stimuli are presumed to be solely due to the repeated pairing of color and particular concepts, messages, and experiences. Others, however, are presumed to represent a biologically engrained predisposition that is reinforced and shaped by social learning. Through this social learning, color associations can be extended beyond natural bodily processes (e.g., blood flow modulations) to objects in close proximity to the body (e.g., clothes, accessories). Thus, for example, red may not only increase attractiveness evaluations when viewed on the face, but also when viewed on a shirt or dress. As implied by the name of the theory, the physical and psychological context in which color is perceived is thought to influence its meaning and, accordingly, responses to it. Thus, blue on a ribbon is positive (indicating first place), but blue on a piece of meat is negative (indicating rotten), and a red shirt may enhance the attractiveness of a potential mate (red = sex/romance), but not of a person evaluating one’s competence (red = failure/danger).

Meier and Robinson (2005) and Meier (in press ) have posited a conceptual metaphor theory of color. From this perspective, people talk and think about abstract concepts in concrete terms grounded in perceptual experience (i.e., they use metaphors) to help them understand and navigate their social world ( Lakoff and Johnson, 1999 ). Thus, anger entails reddening of the face, so anger is metaphorically described as “seeing red,” and positive emotions and experiences are often depicted in terms of lightness (rather than darkness), so lightness is metaphorically linked to good (“seeing the light”) rather than bad (“in the dark”). These metaphoric associations are presumed to have implications for important outcomes such as morality judgments (e.g., white things are viewed as pure) and stereotyping (e.g., dark faces are viewed more negatively).

For many years it has been known that light directly influences physiology and increases arousal (see Cajochen, 2007 , for a review), but recently theorists have posited that such effects are wavelength dependent. Blue light, in particular, is posited to activate the melanopsin photoreceptor system which, in turn, activates the brain structures involved in sub-cortical arousal and higher-order attentional processing ( Cajochen et al., 2005 ; Lockley et al., 2006 ). As such, exposure to blue light is expected to facilitate alertness and enhance performance on tasks requiring sustained attention.

Evaluation and Recommendations

Drawing on recent theorizing in evolutionary psychology, emotion science, retinal physiology, person perception, and social cognition, the aforementioned conceptualizations represent important advances to the literature on color and psychological functioning. Nevertheless, theory in this area remains at a nascent level of development, and the following weaknesses may be identified.

First, the focus of theoretical work in this area is either extremely specific or extremely general. A precise conceptual proposition such as red signals dominance and leads to competitive advantage in sports ( Hill and Barton, 2005 ) is valuable in that it can be directly translated into a clear, testable hypothesis; however, it is not clear how this specific hypothesis connects to a broader understanding of color–performance relations in achievement settings more generally. On the other end of the spectrum, a general conceptualization such as color-in-context theory ( Elliot and Maier, 2012 ) is valuable in that it offers several widely applicable premises; however, these premises are only vaguely suggestive of precise hypotheses in specific contexts. What is needed are mid-level theoretical frameworks that comprehensively, yet precisely explain and predict links between color and psychological functioning in specific contexts (for emerging developments, see Pazda and Greitemeyer, in press ; Spence, in press ; Stephen and Perrett, in press ).

Second, the extant theoretical work is limited in scope in terms of range of hues, range of color properties, and direction of influence. Most theorizing has focused on one hue, red, which is understandable given its prominence in nature, on the body, and in society ( Changizi, 2009 ; Elliot and Maier, 2014 ); however, other hues also carry important associations that undoubtedly have downstream effects (e.g., blue: Labrecque and Milne, 2012 ; green: Akers et al., 2012 ). Color has three basic properties: hue, lightness, and chroma ( Fairchild, 2013 ). Variation in any or all of these properties could influence downstream affect, cognition, or behavior, yet only hue is considered in most theorizing (most likely because experientially, it is the most salient color property). Lightness and chroma also undoubtedly have implications for psychological functioning (e.g., lightness: Kareklas et al., 2014 ; chroma: Lee et al., 2013 ); lightness has received some attention within conceptual metaphor theory ( Meier, in press ; see also Prado-León and Rosales-Cinco, 2011 ), but chroma has been almost entirely overlooked, as has the issue of combinations of hue, lightness, and chroma. Finally, most theorizing has focused on color as an independent variable rather than a dependent variable; however, it is also likely that many situational and intrapersonal factors influence color perception (e.g., situational: Bubl et al., 2009 ; intrapersonal: Fetterman et al., 2015 ).

Third, theorizing to date has focused primarily on main effects, with only a modicum of attention allocated to the important issue of moderation. As research literatures develop and mature, they progress from a sole focus on “is” questions (“Does X influence Y?”) to additionally considering “when” questions (“Under what conditions does X influence Y and under what conditions does X not influence Y?”). These “second generation” questions ( Zanna and Fazio, 1982 , p. 283) can seem less exciting and even deflating in that they posit boundary conditions that constrain the generalizability of an effect. Nevertheless, this step is invaluable in that it adds conceptual precision and clarity, and begins to address the issue of real-world applicability. All color effects undoubtedly depend on certain conditions – culture, gender, age, type of task, variant of color, etc. – and acquiring an understanding of these conditions will represent an important marker of maturity for this literature (for movement in this direction, see Schwarz and Singer, 2013 ; Tracy and Beall, 2014 ; Bertrams et al., 2015 ; Buechner et al., in press ; Young, in press ). Another, more succinct, way to state this third weakness is that theorizing in this area needs to take context, in all its forms, more seriously.

Empirical Work

Empirical work on color and psychological functioning dates back to the late 19th century ( Féré, 1887 ; see Pressey, 1921 , for a review). A consistent feature of this work, from its inception to the past decade, is that it has been fraught with major methodological problems that have precluded rigorous testing and clear interpretation ( O’Connor, 2011 ). One problem has been a failure to attend to rudimentary scientific procedures such as experimenter blindness to condition, identifying, and excluding color deficient participants, and standardizing the duration of color presentation or exposure. Another problem has been a failure to specify and control for color at the spectral level in manipulations. Without such specification, it is impossible to know what precise combination of color properties was investigated, and without such control, the confounding of focal and non-focal color properties is inevitable ( Whitfield and Wiltshire, 1990 ; Valdez and Mehrabian, 1994 ). Yet another problem has been the use of underpowered samples. This problem, shared across scientific disciplines ( Maxwell, 2004 ), can lead to Type I errors, Type II errors, and inflated effect sizes ( Fraley and Vazire, 2014 ; Murayama et al., 2014 ). Together, these methodological problems have greatly hampered progress in this area.

Although some of the aforementioned problems remain (see “Evaluation and Recommendations” below), others have been rectified in recent work. This, coupled with advances in theory development, has led to a surge in empirical activity. In the following, I review the diverse areas in which color work has been conducted in the past decade, and the findings that have emerged. Space considerations require me to constrain this review to a brief mention of central findings within each area. I focus on findings with humans (for reviews of research with non-human animals, see Higham and Winters, in press ; Setchell, in press ) that have been obtained in multiple (at least five) independent labs. Table ​ Table1 1 provides a summary, as well as representative examples and specific references.

Research on color and psychological functioning.

In research on color and selective attention, red stimuli have been shown to receive an attentional advantage (see Folk, in press , for a review). Research on color and alertness has shown that blue light increases subjective alertness and performance on attention-based tasks (see Chellappa et al., 2011 , for a review). Studies on color and athletic performance have linked wearing red to better performance and perceived performance in sport competitions and tasks (see Maier et al., in press , for a review). In research on color and intellectual performance, viewing red prior to a challenging cognitive task has been shown to undermine performance (see Shi et al., 2015 , for a review). Research focused on color and aggressiveness/dominance evaluation has shown that viewing red on self or other increases appraisals of aggressiveness and dominance (see Krenn, 2014 , for a review). Empirical work on color and avoidance motivation has linked viewing red in achievement contexts to increased caution and avoidance (see Elliot and Maier, 2014 , for a review). In research on color and attraction, viewing red on or near a female has been shown to enhance attraction in heterosexual males (see Pazda and Greitemeyer, in press , for a review). Research on color and store/company evaluation has shown that blue on stores/logos increases quality and trustworthiness appraisals (see Labrecque and Milne, 2012 , for a review). Finally, empirical work on color and eating/drinking has shown that red influences food and beverage perception and consumption (see Spence, in press , for a review).

The aforementioned findings represent important contributions to the literature on color and psychological functioning, and highlight the multidisciplinary nature of research in this area. Nevertheless, much like the extant theoretical work, the extant empirical work remains at a nascent level of development, due, in part, to the following weaknesses.

First, although in some research in this area color properties are controlled for at the spectral level, in most research it (still) is not. Color control is typically done improperly at the device (rather than the spectral) level, is impossible to implement (e.g., in web-based platform studies), or is ignored altogether. Color control is admittedly difficult, as it requires technical equipment for color assessment and presentation, as well as the expertise to use it. Nevertheless, careful color control is essential if systematic scientific work is to be conducted in this area. Findings from uncontrolled research can be informative in initial explorations of color hypotheses, but such work is inherently fraught with interpretational ambiguity ( Whitfield and Wiltshire, 1990 ; Elliot and Maier, 2014 ) that must be subsequently addressed.

Second, color perception is not only a function of lightness, chroma, and hue, but also of factors such as viewing distance and angle, amount and type of ambient light, and presence of other colors in the immediate background and general environmental surround ( Hunt and Pointer, 2011 ; Brainard and Radonjić, 2014 ; Fairchild, 2015 ). In basic color science research (e.g., on color physics, color physiology, color appearance modeling, etcetera; see Gegenfurtner and Ennis, in press ; Johnson, in press ; Stockman and Brainard, in press ), these factors are carefully specified and controlled for in order to establish standardized participant viewing conditions. These factors have been largely ignored and allowed to vary in research on color and psychological functioning, with unknown consequences. An important next step for research in this area is to move to incorporate these more rigorous standardization procedures widely utilized by basic color scientists. With regard to both this and the aforementioned weakness, it should be acknowledged that exact and complete control is not actually possible in color research, given the multitude of factors that influence color perception ( Committee on Colorimetry of the Optical Society of America, 1953 ) and our current level of knowledge about and ability to control them ( Fairchild, 2015 ). As such, the standard that must be embraced and used as a guideline in this work is to control color properties and viewing conditions to the extent possible given current technology, and to keep up with advances in the field that will increasingly afford more precise and efficient color management.

Third, although in some research in this area, large, fully powered samples are used, much of the research remains underpowered. This is a problem in general, but it is particularly a problem when the initial demonstration of an effect is underpowered (e.g., Elliot and Niesta, 2008 ), because initial work is often used as a guide for determining sample size in subsequent work (both heuristically and via power analysis). Underpowered samples commonly produce overestimated effect size estimates ( Ioannidis, 2008 ), and basing subsequent sample sizes on such estimates simply perpetuates the problem. Small sample sizes can also lead researchers to prematurely conclude that a hypothesis is disconfirmed, overlooking a potentially important advance ( Murayama et al., 2014 ). Findings from small sampled studies should be considered preliminary; running large sampled studies with carefully controlled color stimuli is essential if a robust scientific literature is to be developed. Furthermore, as the “evidentiary value movement” ( Finkel et al., 2015 ) makes inroads in the empirical sciences, color scientists would do well to be at the leading edge of implementing such rigorous practices as publically archiving research materials and data, designating exploratory from confirmatory analyses, supplementing or even replacing significant testing with “new statistics” ( Cumming, 2014 ), and even preregistering research protocols and analyses (see Finkel et al., 2015 , for an overview).

In both reviewing advances in and identifying weaknesses of the literature on color and psychological functioning, it is important to bear in mind that the existing theoretical and empirical work is at an early stage of development. It is premature to offer any bold theoretical statements, definitive empirical pronouncements, or impassioned calls for application; rather, it is best to be patient and to humbly acknowledge that color psychology is a uniquely complex area of inquiry ( Kuehni, 2012 ; Fairchild, 2013 ) that is only beginning to come into its own. Findings from color research can be provocative and media friendly, and the public (and the field as well) can be tempted to reach conclusions before the science is fully in place. There is considerable promise in research on color and psychological functioning, but considerably more theoretical and empirical work needs to be done before the full extent of this promise can be discerned and, hopefully, fulfilled.

Conflict of Interest Statement

The author declares that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest.

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Visual Analysis Essay

Barbara P

Visual Analysis Essay - A Writing Guide with Format & Sample

14 min read

Published on: Feb 1, 2020

Last updated on: Nov 24, 2023

Visual Analysis Essay

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A visual analysis essay is a common assignment for the students of history, art, and communications. It is quite a unique type of academic essay. 

Visual analysis essays are where images meet text. These essays aim to analyze the meanings embedded in the artworks, explaining visual concepts in a written form. 

It may sound difficult to write a visual analysis essay, but it can be done in simple steps by following the right approach. Let’s dive into the writing steps, tips, example essays, and potential topics to help you write an excellent essay. 

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What is a Visual Analysis Essay

A visual analysis essay basically requires you to provide a detailed description of a specific visual work of art. It is a type of analytical essay that deals with imagery and visual art instead of texts.

The subject of a visual analysis essay could be an image, painting, photograph, or any visual medium. 

In this type of essay, you need to describe the artwork and analyze its elements in detail. That is, how different elements and features fit together to make the whole work stand out. In this sense, you need to use a mixture of descriptive writing and analytical language. 

To write a good visual analysis essay, you need to know the basic visual elements and principles of design. Let’s learn about these concepts first before diving into the writing steps.

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Visual Elements for a Visual Analysis Essay

Writing a visual analysis essay involves analyzing the visual elements of a piece of art. These elements form the basis of the features and characteristics of an image. 

Below you can find the common visual elements of a visual analysis essay.

Principles of Design in a Visual Analysis Essay

In addition to visual elements, you must also consider the principles of design for writing a great visual analysis essay. These principles help you identify and explain the characteristics of the image. 

How to Write a Visual Analysis Essay - 7 Simple Steps

Now that you have an idea about visual elements and principles, you are now ready to proceed. 

Here are the steps that you need to follow for writing a visual analysis essay. Let’s discuss them in detail.

Step 1 - Gather General Information About the Artwork

Once you have a specific artwork or image, here is how to start a visual analysis essay. You need to ask some basic questions about the work and jot down your ideas.

This pre-writing step is for brainstorming ideas. Ask these questions to begin:

  • Who and what does the artwork represent? 
  • Who is the author of the piece? 
  • Who did the artist create the work for? Who is the intended audience?
  • When and where was the work created? What is its historical context?
  • Where was this work displayed for the first time?
  • Identify which medium, materials, and techniques were used to create the image?

Step 2 - Note Down the Characteristics of the Artwork

The next thing that you need to do is identify what the image depicts. Moreover, you need to identify and describe the visual art elements and design principles used in the work. 

Here’s what you need to note:

  • The subject matter and its representation.
  • Colors, shapes, and lines used in the composition.
  • The balance, proportion, and harmony within the artwork.
  • Any symbolism or metaphors present.

By pointing out such characteristics, you set the stage for a nuanced analysis in your essay.

Step 3 - Visual Analysis Essay Outline 

Once you have gathered your main points by carefully studying the image, you should now organize them in an outline.

Here is how you make an outline for your visual analysis essay:

Step 4- Write the Introduction

This is the first paragraph of a visual analysis essay in which you need to provide some background information on the topic. After grabbing the readers’ attention with an interesting fact, briefly provide information on the following points. 

  • Talk briefly about the painting and its artist or creator.
  • Provide a brief description of the painting and give historical context
  • Add an interesting fact about the artist or the painting. 

The introduction should end with a thesis statement. The visual analysis essay thesis states the analysis points on the artwork that you aim to discuss in your essay. 

Step 5 - Provide Detailed Description, Analysis, and Interpretation

In the body section, you need to explore the artwork in detail. In the first body paragraph, simply describe the features and characteristics of the work. For instance, talk about the technique being used, shape, color, and other aspects to support your thesis. 

In the next paragraphs, you can go into the analysis and interpretation of these elements and the work as a whole. Present all the details logically and discuss the relationship between the objects. Talk about the meaning, significance, and impact of the work.

Step 6 - Writing a Conclusion

Once you have completed the body section, move to the conclusion paragraph. This is the last paragraph of the essay that should be strong and well-written to create a sense of closure.

Here’s how you can do it

  • Revisit the main insights gained through the analysis, summarizing the key visual elements and principles discussed. 
  • Emphasize the significance of cultural or historical context in interpreting the visual narrative. 
  • Tie together the threads of your analysis to reinforce your thesis or main argument.
  • End with a memorable statement and encourage readers to carry the lessons learned from the analysis into their own encounters with art. 

Step 7 - Edit & Revise Your Essay

Here’s how to end your visual analysis essay: edit and revise your first draft until it becomes the perfect version. Consider these steps for an excellent revision:

  • Review for Clarity: Ensure your ideas flow logically. Clarify any ambiguous or unclear statements to enhance the overall readability of your essay.
  • Trim Unnecessary Details: Trim excess information that doesn't directly contribute to your main points. Keep your analysis focused and concise.
  • Check Consistency: Verify that your writing style remains consistent throughout the essay. Maintain a balance between formal language and engaging expression.
  • Fine-Tune Transitions: Ensure smooth transitions between different sections of your essay. Transitions help guide your reader through the analysis, making the journey more enjoyable and comprehensible.
  • Proofread for Errors: Carefully proofread your essay for grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors. A polished essay enhances your credibility and the overall professionalism of your work.

With these basic steps, you can craft an amazing visual analysis essay. Read on for some useful tips for analyzing different kinds of visual subjects.

Tips on How to Analyze a Photograph

Painting and photograph analysis are very similar. There are three ways in which photo visual analysis is conducted: description, reflection, and formal analysis.

Although the historical study may be used, it is not necessary.

  • Description -  It implies examining the picture carefully and considering all of the details. The description should be neutral, focusing on simple facts without expressing a personal viewpoint.
  • Reflection -  For the next stage, consider the emotions that the picture stirs in you. Every viewer will have a distinct viewpoint and feelings about the piece. Knowing some historical background might be useful when formulating an educated response.
  • Formal analysis -  Consider the visual components and concepts. How are they shown in the photo?
  • Historical analysis -  For a contextual analysis, keep an eye on the photo's surroundings. Make sure you comprehend the surrounding environment in which the photograph was taken. What era was this image shot during?

Tips on How to Analyze a Sculpture

A sculpture, unlike a painting or photograph, requires a different approach to visual analysis. It still depends on visible components and principles, however it does so in a slightly different way.

When you're writing about sculptures, keep the following in mind:

  • Medium, size, and technique -  What kind of material is it? Is it carved in a negative or positive method?
  • Color and lightning -  Describe the hue of the sculpture, whether it is painted. Was the sculptor concerned with the illumination when creating the work?
  • Human body and scale -  Consider how a human body is portrayed in the piece. Also, assess the sculpture's size compared to that of the viewer.
  • Function -  What was the sculpture's main aim? You could speak about whether it represented a religious conviction or honored someone, for example.
  • Composition -  Examine the placement of the piece and determine whether there is a focal point.

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Visual Analysis Essay on Advertisement

In advertisements, visuals are used to pique interest or persuade the public that what is being advertised is needed. The goal of a visual argument is to generate attention and intrigue. Images are utilized in advertisements to transmit information and interact with the audience.

When conducting a visual analysis of an ad, keep the following in mind:

  • Textual Elements
  • Illustrations
  • Composition

This all has an impact on how people perceive information and how they react to it.

When you analyze the visuals of an ad, you're performing a rhetorical analysis. The study of images and extracting information from them is known as visual rhetoric. It aids in the comprehension of typography, imagery, and the structure of elements on the page.

How to Write a Visual Analysis Paper on an Advertisement

Visual components in advertising are important. It aids in the persuasion of the audience.

Always keep the rhetorical situation in mind while analyzing visual arguments. The following are some key elements to consider:

  • Audience -  Who is the advertisement meant to attract?
  • Purpose -  What message does the photo try to get across to the audience?
  • Design -  What kind of visualizations are included? Are the visuals clear and easy to follow? Are there any patterns or repetitions in the design?
  • Strategies -  Is there any humor, celebrities, or cultural allusions in the graphic's message?
  • Medium -  Is the photograph surrounded by text? Is there any text within the picture? How does it interact with the picture to produce an intended effect if there is any?
  • Context -  What are the characters in an ad? Where are they positioned?
  • Subtext -  Consider the meaning of the picture's words. What are they trying to say?

Visual Rhetorical Analysis Essay Examples

Here are some visual analysis essay samples that you can read to understand this type of essay better. 

Art history Visual Analysis Essay Example

Political Cartoon Visual Analysis Essay

Rhetorical and Visual Analysis Essay Sample

Mona Lisa Visual Analysis Essay

Visual Analysis Essay Topics

Here are some top visual analysis essay topics that you can choose from and begin the writing process.

  • Make a review of your favorite Hollywood production and discuss the visual arts involved.
  • Write about the use of color and action in TV commercials.
  • Discuss how the brand name is displayed in digital media campaigns.
  • Discuss different types of visual appeals used in web ads.
  • What is the special about Cleo Award-winning ads?
  • The Use of Light and Shadow in Caravaggio's "The Calling of Saint Matthew"
  • The Symbolism of Colors in Vincent van Gogh's "Starry Night"
  • What is the importance of art and culture in our life?
  • How has art changed over the last 50 years?
  • The use of colors in marketing and advertising. 

To conclude, 

From gathering information about the artwork to crafting a compelling analysis, we've navigated the essential steps you need for a visual analysis essay. Moreover, with the specific tips and examples, you have everything you need to get started.

So dive into the writing process with confidence and return to this blog whenever you need help on any step!

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  • background-color

Formal syntax

The background-color CSS property sets the background color of an element, either through a color value or the keyword transparent .

The background-color property is specified as a single "><color> value.

where <color> = <rgb()> | <rgba()> | <hsl()> | <hsla()> | <hex-color> | <named-color> | currentcolor | <deprecated-system-color>

where <rgb()> = rgb( [ [ CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> { 3 } | CSS data type represents a number, being either a whole integer or a fraction."><number> { 3 } ] [ / <alpha-value> ] ? ] | [ [ CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> # { 3 } | CSS data type represents a number, being either a whole integer or a fraction."><number> # { 3 } ] , <alpha-value> ? ] ) <rgba()> = rgba( [ [ CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> { 3 } | CSS data type represents a number, being either a whole integer or a fraction."><number> { 3 } ] [ / <alpha-value> ] ? ] | [ [ CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> # { 3 } | CSS data type represents a number, being either a whole integer or a fraction."><number> # { 3 } ] , <alpha-value> ? ] ) <hsl()> = hsl( [ <hue> CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> [ / <alpha-value> ] ? ] | [ <hue> , CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> , CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> , <alpha-value> ? ] ) <hsla()> = hsla( [ <hue> CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> [ / <alpha-value> ] ? ] | [ <hue> , CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> , CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> , <alpha-value> ? ] )

where <alpha-value> = CSS data type represents a number, being either a whole integer or a fraction."><number> | CSS data type represents a percentage value. Many CSS properties can take <percentage> values, often to define a size as relative to its parent object. Numerous properties can use percentages, such as width, margin, padding, and font-size."><percentage> <hue> = CSS data type represents a number, being either a whole integer or a fraction."><number> | <angle>


Browser compatibility.

The compatibility table in this page is generated from structured data. If you'd like to contribute to the data, please check out and send us a pull request.

1. In Internet Explorer 8 and 9, there is a bug where a computed background-color of transparent causes click events to not get fired on overlaid elements.

Multiple backgrounds

Document Tags and Contributors

  • CSS Background
  • CSS Property
  • CSS Reference
  • CSS Background and Borders
  • Border-image generator
  • Border-radius generator
  • Box-shadow generator
  • Scaling background images
  • Using CSS multiple backgrounds
  • background-attachment
  • background-clip
  • background-image
  • background-origin
  • background-position
  • background-position-x
  • background-position-y
  • background-repeat
  • background-size
  • border-bottom
  • border-bottom-color
  • border-bottom-left-radius
  • border-bottom-right-radius
  • border-bottom-style
  • border-bottom-width
  • border-color
  • border-image
  • border-image-outset
  • border-image-repeat
  • border-image-slice
  • to use instead of the style of the border. If this property is set to none, the style defined by border-style is used instead."> border-image-source
  • border-image-width
  • border-left
  • border-left-color
  • border-left-style
  • border-left-width
  • border-radius
  • border-right
  • border-right-color
  • border-right-style
  • border-right-width
  • border-style
  • border-top-color
  • border-top-left-radius
  • border-top-right-radius
  • border-top-style
  • border-top-width
  • border-width

CSS Background Color – How to Change the Background Color in HTML

You have started creating your HTML page, and you want to give it some color – maybe change the color of the text or set a nice background. So how do you do that?

In this article I'll show you how you can change the background color of a page in a few different ways.

How to Change the Background Color of an HTML Element

You can change the background color of an HTML element using the background-color CSS property and giving it a value of a color.

For example, this code will make all paragraph elements in your HTML file have a pink background because the background-color property has a value of pink .


There are about 140 color names that you can use, like teal , hotpink , indigo and many others.


Note: if you give a background-color to an element and don't see it change, it can be a syntax error, or it can also be that the element does not have a width or height. Try to put some content in it, or give it a width and an height using the CSS properties width and height .

There are actually almost 16.8 million colors that you can use. You can use all these colors using RGB values. There are also HSL colors where you have about 3.7 million colors to choose from. In the next section you will learn about all these different ways of creating colors.

Different Color Notations

The background-color property accepts colors as possible values. Here you will see four different notations for color values.

The first will be color names, and there are around 140 keywords that you can use. This is the easiest way to choose a color as it doesn't require understanding special notations – but it has a limited range of options.

The second and third ways to name or choose colors are RGB values and hexadecimal values. In these notations, colors are identified by the amount of red, green, and blue that they contain.

This comes from how a screen produces color. A screen is made of pixels, and each pixel is lighted by LEDs of three different colors, green, blue and red, that can shine at different intensities.

The fourth notation is HSL colors, or Hue-Saturation-Lightness. This notation comes from Graphic Design, as it reflects a more natural way for humans to think about color: a pure color (hue), of which saturation and lightness can be varied.

You can use any of these color notations to give a color to the background, but let's see them in more details, so you can choose the one you prefer.

HTML Color Names

There are 16 basic colors recognised in the first version of HTML. Now there are 140+ named colors you can use.


You can see all the named colors in the appendix at the end of the article.

RGB stands for Red-Green-Blue. The colors in this format are written rgb(0,0,0) , where each value is a number between 0 and 255 representing the amount of red, green, and blue used to make each color, respectively.

For example, if you have rgb(0,0,0) you get black.

To get red, you write rgb(255,0,0) , where there is as much red as possible with 255 , 0 for blue, and 0 for green.

You can get other variations of red with small amounts of green and/or blue, and a bit less red. For example you can get an orange red with rgb(255,69,0) or a dark red with rgb(139,0,0) .


Below an example of how the color changes when you adjust two of the RGB values: the top left corner of the colored square is equal to rgb(0,0,0) , the top right is equal to rgb(0,0,255) , the bottom left corner to rgb(0,255,0) and the bottom right corner to rgb(0,255,255) .


Fortunately, you don't need to guess the numbers to get the color you want. You can find various color pickers online that let you choose the color with sliders (or other methods) and give you the RGB color value you want to use.

Hexadecimal Colors

Hexadecimal colors are a different way to write RGB colors. With hexadecimals you also have three numbers, one for each color, with 256 possible values.

In this case, though, each color has two digits that go from 0 to F (that is,   0 , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 , and A , B , C , D , E , F ). One single digit has 16 possible values, and two digits have 256 possible values, from 00 , to FF (255).

Hexadecimal colors are written with a # in front of the value. Red is written as #FF0000 , dark red as #8B0000 , and orange red as #FF4500 , for example.


You can also use color pickers to generate hexadecimal values.

Hexadecimal shorthand

You can write hexadecimal numbers in shorthand form, using only three digits instead of six. For example, you can write red like #F00 . This reduces the number of possible colors to just above 4,000, but it is shorter to write, and sometimes that is what is important.

Each digit is in place of two identical digits, so we can't write #8B0000 in shorthand form, as 8 and B are not identical. But we can write #800 which is equal to #880000 , pretty similar to the other dark red. And orange red can be #F40 (equal to #FF4400 ).


HSL means Hue-Saturation-Lightness, and it is a completely different way of writing colors than what we have seen so far.

HSL colors are represented with three numbers: the hue goes from 0 to 360 , and saturation and lightness from 0 to 100 .

The hue determines the base color, and its value is an angle, a degree on the color wheel. In this case, red is 0 , green is 120 , blue is 240 , and 360 is again red.


Saturation goes from 0 , which makes the color gray, to 100 , which shows the full color.


Lightness is the amount of black or white added to the color. 0 is black, 50 is the color itself, and 100 is white.


For example, you'd write red as hsl(0,100%,50%) , orange red as hsl(16,100%,50%) , and dark red as hsl(0,100%,27%) .


It can be easier to find similar colors using HSL than with the other color schemes. With red and its variations you have seen that to get a darker red you can just change the lightness percentage, and mixing red with an other color is enough to change its hue value a bit.

Let's see it in action with a mixed color in hexadecimal, like orange ( #FFA500 or rgb(255,166,0) ), written in HSL as hsl(39,100%,50%) . You can get a lighter orange just by increasing the lightness.

So for example you can write hsl(39,100%,65%) to get this lighter orange. With the other notations you would have needed to write rgb(255,193,77) or #FFC14D .


You can also find color pickers online for HSL colors.

Property name short-hand

You can also set the background color using the short-hand background property.


This is a more versatile property, as it is shorthand for various background properties , like background-image and background-position . When you use it with a color value it works exactly the same as background-color .

You have learned how to give a background color to your HTML elements using the background-color property and its shorthand background , and using different color notations.

Now you have all the tools you need to add whatever colors you want to your web pages. Enjoy!

All 140+ named colors


Spelling Variations

The color names containing the word "Gray" can also be written with the spelling "Grey" as shown below.


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Essays About Colors: Top 5 Examples Plus Prompts

Color allows us to see the world in all its natural beauty. If you are writing essays about colors, you can start by reading some essay examples. 

Almost everyone has gotten a glimpse of the wonders of colors, but what are they? To be precise, color is scientifically defined as “ the aspect of things that is caused by differing qualities of light being reflected or emitted by them .” When light shines on objects, it reflects, producing different shades of light and allowing us to see and differentiate colors. 

Colors are powerful tools that can make or break how we view things. They are essential factors in inspiring the solitude of a small forest, the intimidation that a volcano provokes, and the sheer mystery of the deep ocean. They help us know when to “stop” and “go” on the road and which plants and animals are toxic. Most cannot imagine a world without color because of its near-essential role in our lives.

To start writing essays about colors, look at some of our top essay examples below. 

1. An Essay on Color by Melih Mert

2. the wonder of nature’s colors by kelly johnson, 3. the power of color by kerry nash.

  • 4.  World without colour by Ella Gray
  • 5. ​​The Meaning Behind the Many Colors of India’s Holi Festival by Victoria Finlay

1. Favorite Colors

2. colour blindness: what is it and how does it affect people, 3. how does color impact perception, 4. the use of color in culture and religion, 5. art and colors.

“Each color conceals a story. Some virtuous and sensitive eyes see the truth through them, while others see rage, anger, and all the evils dictated by the alter ego. Colors carry such feelings as anger and hope, and symbolize such concepts as sinfulness and innocence. They are abused or sacrificed, and widely preferred or despised.”

This essay gives readers a brief overview of color, starting with a basic definition. Next, Mert discusses human responses to colors, the meaning of colors in different cultures, and the use of colors in different religions, governments, and organizations. To an extent, different colors evoke different emotions and qualities and can be used to control people’s perceptions. 

“Mother Nature’s palette is one of the most magical because it is perfectly suited to every circumstance. It is beautifully ever-changing, with the seasons, time of day, and geographic region. A bright yellow flower signals insects to come pollinate, while a bright red flower attracts hummingbirds. A blue sky tells us no need for an umbrella, while green grass tempts us to remove our shoes and enjoy the cool softness. The mysterious power of color affects every aspect of this bio-diverse world.”

Johnson opens a children’s outdoor activity tutorial with this essay, in which she discusses how colors contribute to nature’s beauty. Color affects our mood, so it is no surprise that nature’s bright, satisfying color palette is perfect for kids to enjoy. She also briefly explains the importance of introducing children to color- it sparks creativity and increases their awareness. 

“In conclusion, color is life and as matter of fact, it is everything. It determines the mood anyone could have within those inner rooms. Therefore, it is imperative that while trying to set up either of your living room, bedroom, kitchen or dining room, the right color combinations are used. These will not only make those rooms attractive, but also determine the level of productivity that could occur there.”

In Nash’s essay, she elaborates on the importance of color choice, particularly in interior design. Specific colors make a room feel more spacious, relaxing, and luxurious, and different colors work well for different rooms. Nash suggests some color combinations and their supposed effects on humans and reminds us that color choices can “make or break” a house. 

4.   World without colour by Ella Gray

“We’d lose all sight for which was which, basically normal organisms wouldn’t be able to tell the difference from one thing to another resulting in chaos. Emotionally and Mentally: Our world would seem depressing and very dark and disturbing. Some would enjoy this, while others would not because a world without colors means a world with no life. We basically need colors to help us get through the day and without them…life would be sad.”

Gray speculates on what the world would be like if we could not see colors- we would not be able to distinguish objects from one another as well. She also gives several examples of the beauty of color, including in landscapes, animals, cosmetics, and clothing. Her essay reveals how we take our ability to see color for granted, as we do not realize how depressing a world without color would be. 

5. ​​ The Meaning Behind the Many Colors of India’s Holi Festival by Victoria Finlay

“You might say something similar about how colors work in India. On the surface, they provide pleasure as well as useful signals of tradition and ritual. But if we’re attentive, colors in India also remind us of that which is easy to forget: the evasive nature of matter, and of our own special relationship with light, whatever that light may be.”

In her essay, Finlay reflects on the Indian festival of Holi and its prominent use of color. She describes the beauty she encounters as she watches the festival and explains the religious context of the festival. She explains the different colors used, such as yellow, blue, and indigo, and their meanings in Indian culture. Colors are significant in Indian culture and remind us of light, whether actual light or the “light” of the divine entities the Indians honor. 

Writing Prompts On Essays about Colors

Essays about Colors: Favorite colors

Plain and simple, you can write your essay about your favorite color. Explain why it is your favorite, what it means to you, and how you feel when you see it- perhaps you associate it with specific memories or people. Your essay should include personal anecdotes based on your own opinion. 

Color blindness is a phenomenon in which people have difficulty telling the difference between specific colors. Do some research on the topic and discuss the impacts that color blindness has on people. If you are color blind, reflect on how you see color, but if you are not, you must base your essay on the online experiences of color blind people. 

From room interiors to clothing to animals, color can make a striking difference in the way we perceive things. Think of examples in which something’s color impacts your impressions of it, and explain how other colors or combinations may change your perception. You can give either one example or multiple, but be sure to explain it in sufficient detail. 

For your essay, write about a cultural or religious tradition involving color. It can be an art form, festival, ritual, or anything else you can find, including Holi, the festival discussed in Finlay’s essay. Write about the cultural significance of colors in this tradition; you can also include a brief reflection on the tradition and colors. 

Similarly, you can write about the impact color has on a work of art. Choose a painting, photograph, film, or anything else, and analyze the color choices. Write about the role color plays in work- explain its effect on the viewers and how it could make them feel. 

For help with this topic, read our guide explaining “what is persuasive writing ?”

Tip: If writing an essay sounds like a lot of work, simplify it. Write a simple 5 paragraph essay instead.

background color essay

Martin is an avid writer specializing in editing and proofreading. He also enjoys literary analysis and writing about food and travel.

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What is a Background in an Essay: Introducing Information

What is a Background in an Essay: Introducing Information

Writing A Background in an Essay

Writing A Background in an Essay

Background in an essay refers to material provided in a nonfiction essay or work that explains the context of the issue you will explore in the essay.

This information is connected to the hook or opening statement, and then to the thesis statement, which you will write last at the end of the introduction.

background color essay

What is Background Information in an Essay

The background information is the supporting points you employ to demonstrate your argument or viewpoint. It is the grounds on which you base your point of view to prove your argument. background information is found in the introduction, just after the opening statement or the hook.

essay introduction

The amount and type of background material depend on the goal and topic of your essay.

You may need to provide definitions or an overview of the problem you discuss in the essay.

The background information in an essay will depend on the topic.

The background information in an essay on a scientific test may include test parameters, test objectives, test site conditions, sample kinds, sample size, and other background material.

If your essay is about COVID 19, your background information may touch on diverse points. These may include what kind of virus it is, its origins, and how many countries it has affected.

It may also include how many people have contracted it, and how it is transmitted from one person to another, among other things.

How to Write Background Information in an Essay                          

The key to writing background information in an essay is to master the art of the introduction. Grabbing the reader’s attention at the beginning allows you to include the information they need to comprehend your work.

The first paragraph/section of an essay is the introduction, and it is critical to creating an excellent paper. The introduction helps you begin the essay by grabbing the reader’s attention.

Then, you provide background information plus map out the core topic, direction, and objective of your essay.

Usually, an excellent introduction starts with a discussion around the essay’s topic. After that, you move on to the specific ideas you will explore in the body.

How do you write the introduction and include background information in an essay?

Example of essay background

Use an effective hook to make a solid first impression. This piques the curiosity and attention of readers, encouraging them to keep reading.

Provide background information about the main topic of the essay. It establishes a general framework for the paper by providing readers with the information they require before reading it.

It should start with broad concepts and then narrow down to the thesis (a single-focused idea).

Conclude with a concise thesis statement that indicates your motivation for writing, expresses the main idea/argument, and gives the body of the work a direction or outline.

The hook is the tool that captures attention and makes the readers want to keep reading. You can shape it as a question, an interesting fact or statistic, a quotation, or a story.

You can also use any other intriguing idea that piques readers’ curiosity and encourages them to continue reading.

Regardless of which option you choose, ensure the hook links to the essay’s topic in some way.

The background information sets the stage for the essay by offering a high-level summary of the topic. It introduces the broad topic(s) and eases the reader into the subject with general information.

Also, it may comprise concepts, facts, history, definitions, and other material that helps comprehend the specific information offered in the body.

It is critical to understand your audience and evaluate what readers may or may not know about the topic to provide relevant background information.

Besides, it enables you to offer readers the information they require before continuing to read the essay. So, presenting background information in the introduction acts as a link that connects the reader to the issue.

The length and depth of this bridge depend on how much information you believe the reader will need to comprehend the topic and realize why the difficulties you are looking at are essential.

Your thesis statement highlights the key idea or main argument and your motivation for writing the essay. You can also use it to outline the supporting ideas you explore in the body. It is usually the final sentence of the introduction.

Examples of Background Information in an Essay

1.”gettysburg address” abraham lincoln.

The hook in Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address” was that the founding fathers believed that all men are created equal. Then he gave some background on the current state of the Civil War:

Gettysburg address

Now we are in the midst of a major civil war, which will determine whether that nation or any other nation so conceived and dedicated, can last for a long time.

And we have met on one of the war’s most important battlegrounds.

We’ve decided to devote a piece of the field as the last resting place for those who gave their life here so that this country could live. It is entirely appropriate for us to do so.

2. “Goodbye to All That” by Joan Didion

Notice how the introduction hooks your attention and then swiftly offers you some background information about Joan Didion’s life in this personal essay by Joan Didion:

The origins of things are easy to perceive, but the endings are more difficult to see. I can pinpoint when New York began for me now, with a clarity that makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end.

But I can’t pinpoint when it ended or cut through the ambiguities and second starts and broken resolves to the precise point on the page where the heroine is no longer as optimistic as she once was.

I was twenty when I first saw New York. It was summer, and I got off a DC-7 at the old Idlewild temporary terminal in a new dress.

It had seemed very smart in Sacramento but had already seemed less smart, even in the old Idle wild temporary terminal.

The warm air smelled of mildew, and some instinct, programmed by all the movies I’d ever seen and all the songs I’d ever heard sung and all the stories I’d ever read about New York.

Josh Jasen

When not handling complex essays and academic writing tasks, Josh is busy advising students on how to pass assignments. In spare time, he loves playing football or walking with his dog around the park.

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  • Example of a great essay | Explanations, tips & tricks

Example of a Great Essay | Explanations, Tips & Tricks

Published on February 9, 2015 by Shane Bryson . Revised on July 23, 2023 by Shona McCombes.

This example guides you through the structure of an essay. It shows how to build an effective introduction , focused paragraphs , clear transitions between ideas, and a strong conclusion .

Each paragraph addresses a single central point, introduced by a topic sentence , and each point is directly related to the thesis statement .

As you read, hover over the highlighted parts to learn what they do and why they work.

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Table of contents

Other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about writing an essay, an appeal to the senses: the development of the braille system in nineteenth-century france.

The invention of Braille was a major turning point in the history of disability. The writing system of raised dots used by visually impaired people was developed by Louis Braille in nineteenth-century France. In a society that did not value disabled people in general, blindness was particularly stigmatized, and lack of access to reading and writing was a significant barrier to social participation. The idea of tactile reading was not entirely new, but existing methods based on sighted systems were difficult to learn and use. As the first writing system designed for blind people’s needs, Braille was a groundbreaking new accessibility tool. It not only provided practical benefits, but also helped change the cultural status of blindness. This essay begins by discussing the situation of blind people in nineteenth-century Europe. It then describes the invention of Braille and the gradual process of its acceptance within blind education. Subsequently, it explores the wide-ranging effects of this invention on blind people’s social and cultural lives.

Lack of access to reading and writing put blind people at a serious disadvantage in nineteenth-century society. Text was one of the primary methods through which people engaged with culture, communicated with others, and accessed information; without a well-developed reading system that did not rely on sight, blind people were excluded from social participation (Weygand, 2009). While disabled people in general suffered from discrimination, blindness was widely viewed as the worst disability, and it was commonly believed that blind people were incapable of pursuing a profession or improving themselves through culture (Weygand, 2009). This demonstrates the importance of reading and writing to social status at the time: without access to text, it was considered impossible to fully participate in society. Blind people were excluded from the sighted world, but also entirely dependent on sighted people for information and education.

In France, debates about how to deal with disability led to the adoption of different strategies over time. While people with temporary difficulties were able to access public welfare, the most common response to people with long-term disabilities, such as hearing or vision loss, was to group them together in institutions (Tombs, 1996). At first, a joint institute for the blind and deaf was created, and although the partnership was motivated more by financial considerations than by the well-being of the residents, the institute aimed to help people develop skills valuable to society (Weygand, 2009). Eventually blind institutions were separated from deaf institutions, and the focus shifted towards education of the blind, as was the case for the Royal Institute for Blind Youth, which Louis Braille attended (Jimenez et al, 2009). The growing acknowledgement of the uniqueness of different disabilities led to more targeted education strategies, fostering an environment in which the benefits of a specifically blind education could be more widely recognized.

Several different systems of tactile reading can be seen as forerunners to the method Louis Braille developed, but these systems were all developed based on the sighted system. The Royal Institute for Blind Youth in Paris taught the students to read embossed roman letters, a method created by the school’s founder, Valentin Hauy (Jimenez et al., 2009). Reading this way proved to be a rather arduous task, as the letters were difficult to distinguish by touch. The embossed letter method was based on the reading system of sighted people, with minimal adaptation for those with vision loss. As a result, this method did not gain significant success among blind students.

Louis Braille was bound to be influenced by his school’s founder, but the most influential pre-Braille tactile reading system was Charles Barbier’s night writing. A soldier in Napoleon’s army, Barbier developed a system in 1819 that used 12 dots with a five line musical staff (Kersten, 1997). His intention was to develop a system that would allow the military to communicate at night without the need for light (Herron, 2009). The code developed by Barbier was phonetic (Jimenez et al., 2009); in other words, the code was designed for sighted people and was based on the sounds of words, not on an actual alphabet. Barbier discovered that variants of raised dots within a square were the easiest method of reading by touch (Jimenez et al., 2009). This system proved effective for the transmission of short messages between military personnel, but the symbols were too large for the fingertip, greatly reducing the speed at which a message could be read (Herron, 2009). For this reason, it was unsuitable for daily use and was not widely adopted in the blind community.

Nevertheless, Barbier’s military dot system was more efficient than Hauy’s embossed letters, and it provided the framework within which Louis Braille developed his method. Barbier’s system, with its dashes and dots, could form over 4000 combinations (Jimenez et al., 2009). Compared to the 26 letters of the Latin alphabet, this was an absurdly high number. Braille kept the raised dot form, but developed a more manageable system that would reflect the sighted alphabet. He replaced Barbier’s dashes and dots with just six dots in a rectangular configuration (Jimenez et al., 2009). The result was that the blind population in France had a tactile reading system using dots (like Barbier’s) that was based on the structure of the sighted alphabet (like Hauy’s); crucially, this system was the first developed specifically for the purposes of the blind.

While the Braille system gained immediate popularity with the blind students at the Institute in Paris, it had to gain acceptance among the sighted before its adoption throughout France. This support was necessary because sighted teachers and leaders had ultimate control over the propagation of Braille resources. Many of the teachers at the Royal Institute for Blind Youth resisted learning Braille’s system because they found the tactile method of reading difficult to learn (Bullock & Galst, 2009). This resistance was symptomatic of the prevalent attitude that the blind population had to adapt to the sighted world rather than develop their own tools and methods. Over time, however, with the increasing impetus to make social contribution possible for all, teachers began to appreciate the usefulness of Braille’s system (Bullock & Galst, 2009), realizing that access to reading could help improve the productivity and integration of people with vision loss. It took approximately 30 years, but the French government eventually approved the Braille system, and it was established throughout the country (Bullock & Galst, 2009).

Although Blind people remained marginalized throughout the nineteenth century, the Braille system granted them growing opportunities for social participation. Most obviously, Braille allowed people with vision loss to read the same alphabet used by sighted people (Bullock & Galst, 2009), allowing them to participate in certain cultural experiences previously unavailable to them. Written works, such as books and poetry, had previously been inaccessible to the blind population without the aid of a reader, limiting their autonomy. As books began to be distributed in Braille, this barrier was reduced, enabling people with vision loss to access information autonomously. The closing of the gap between the abilities of blind and the sighted contributed to a gradual shift in blind people’s status, lessening the cultural perception of the blind as essentially different and facilitating greater social integration.

The Braille system also had important cultural effects beyond the sphere of written culture. Its invention later led to the development of a music notation system for the blind, although Louis Braille did not develop this system himself (Jimenez, et al., 2009). This development helped remove a cultural obstacle that had been introduced by the popularization of written musical notation in the early 1500s. While music had previously been an arena in which the blind could participate on equal footing, the transition from memory-based performance to notation-based performance meant that blind musicians were no longer able to compete with sighted musicians (Kersten, 1997). As a result, a tactile musical notation system became necessary for professional equality between blind and sighted musicians (Kersten, 1997).

Braille paved the way for dramatic cultural changes in the way blind people were treated and the opportunities available to them. Louis Braille’s innovation was to reimagine existing reading systems from a blind perspective, and the success of this invention required sighted teachers to adapt to their students’ reality instead of the other way around. In this sense, Braille helped drive broader social changes in the status of blindness. New accessibility tools provide practical advantages to those who need them, but they can also change the perspectives and attitudes of those who do not.

Bullock, J. D., & Galst, J. M. (2009). The Story of Louis Braille. Archives of Ophthalmology , 127(11), 1532. https://​​archophthalmol.2009.286.

Herron, M. (2009, May 6). Blind visionary. Retrieved from https://​​content/​articles/2009/05/​blind-visionary/.

Jiménez, J., Olea, J., Torres, J., Alonso, I., Harder, D., & Fischer, K. (2009). Biography of Louis Braille and Invention of the Braille Alphabet. Survey of Ophthalmology , 54(1), 142–149. https://​​j.survophthal.2008.10.006.

Kersten, F.G. (1997). The history and development of Braille music methodology. The Bulletin of Historical Research in Music Education , 18(2). Retrieved from https://​​stable/40214926.

Mellor, C.M. (2006). Louis Braille: A touch of genius . Boston: National Braille Press.

Tombs, R. (1996). France: 1814-1914 . London: Pearson Education Ltd.

Weygand, Z. (2009). The blind in French society from the Middle Ages to the century of Louis Braille . Stanford: Stanford University Press.

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An essay is a focused piece of writing that explains, argues, describes, or narrates.

In high school, you may have to write many different types of essays to develop your writing skills.

Academic essays at college level are usually argumentative : you develop a clear thesis about your topic and make a case for your position using evidence, analysis and interpretation.

The structure of an essay is divided into an introduction that presents your topic and thesis statement , a body containing your in-depth analysis and arguments, and a conclusion wrapping up your ideas.

The structure of the body is flexible, but you should always spend some time thinking about how you can organize your essay to best serve your ideas.

Your essay introduction should include three main things, in this order:

  • An opening hook to catch the reader’s attention.
  • Relevant background information that the reader needs to know.
  • A thesis statement that presents your main point or argument.

The length of each part depends on the length and complexity of your essay .

A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . Everything else you write should relate to this key idea.

A topic sentence is a sentence that expresses the main point of a paragraph . Everything else in the paragraph should relate to the topic sentence.

At college level, you must properly cite your sources in all essays , research papers , and other academic texts (except exams and in-class exercises).

Add a citation whenever you quote , paraphrase , or summarize information or ideas from a source. You should also give full source details in a bibliography or reference list at the end of your text.

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CSS Reference

Css properties, css background-color property.

Set the background color for a page:

More "Try it Yourself" examples below.

Definition and Usage

The background-color property sets the background color of an element.

The background of an element is the total size of the element, including padding and border (but not the margin).

Tip: Use a background color and a text color that makes the text easy to read.

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The numbers in the table specify the first browser version that fully supports the property.


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Specify the background color with a HEX value:

Specify the background color with an RGB value:

Specify the background color with an RGBA value:

Specify the background color with a HSL value:

Specify the background color with a HSLA value:

Set background colors for different elements:

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Title: sora: a review on background, technology, limitations, and opportunities of large vision models.

Abstract: Sora is a text-to-video generative AI model, released by OpenAI in February 2024. The model is trained to generate videos of realistic or imaginative scenes from text instructions and show potential in simulating the physical world. Based on public technical reports and reverse engineering, this paper presents a comprehensive review of the model's background, related technologies, applications, remaining challenges, and future directions of text-to-video AI models. We first trace Sora's development and investigate the underlying technologies used to build this "world simulator". Then, we describe in detail the applications and potential impact of Sora in multiple industries ranging from film-making and education to marketing. We discuss the main challenges and limitations that need to be addressed to widely deploy Sora, such as ensuring safe and unbiased video generation. Lastly, we discuss the future development of Sora and video generation models in general, and how advancements in the field could enable new ways of human-AI interaction, boosting productivity and creativity of video generation.

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How to set Background Color in HTML ?

In this article, we will see how to set the background color of an element. The purpose of using style attribute is to add styles to the elements. Using style attribute with different elements results in change in that element only. This attribute can be used as inline, internal or external. The style attribute provides number of properties which can be used to improve a simple html page.

The background color can be changed in three ways:

  • Inline style attribute
  • Internal CSS
  • External CSS

The HTML5 doesn’t support the ‘ bgcolor’ attribute of <body> tag, therefore we need to use the inline style attribute and internal CSS options for changing the color of a web page. For internal CSS add <style> tag at beginning of html file and add the tag to which the changes are being applied in this case the <body> tag is used.

Example 1: Below is the example that illustrates the use of inline CSS.

Output: This will be displayed when html file is opened in browser.

background color essay

Example 2: Below is the example that illustrates the use of internal CSS.

Output: This will be displayed when html file is opened in browser

background color essay

External CSS: In external CSS, we create a separate file which has all the style data for the html file. Storing the file externally makes it easier to apply changes to the HTML page.

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    Color: When writing a visual analysis essay, you must describe how colors affect the image. You should focus on the colors and how it affects the overall tone and mood of the image. ... This is the first paragraph of a visual analysis essay in which you need to provide some background information on the topic. After grabbing the readers ...

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    Color contrast ratio is determined by comparing the luminance of the text and background color values. In order to meet current Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), a ratio of 4.5:1 is required for text content and 3:1 for larger text such as headings. Large text is defined as 18.66px and bold or larger, or 24px or larger.

  7. How to Write an Essay Outline

    Revised on July 23, 2023. An essay outline is a way of planning the structure of your essay before you start writing. It involves writing quick summary sentences or phrases for every point you will cover in each paragraph, giving you a picture of how your argument will unfold. You'll sometimes be asked to submit an essay outline as a separate ...

  8. How to Write an Essay Introduction

    Table of contents. Step 1: Hook your reader. Step 2: Give background information. Step 3: Present your thesis statement. Step 4: Map your essay's structure. Step 5: Check and revise. More examples of essay introductions. Other interesting articles. Frequently asked questions about the essay introduction.

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    background. -color. In This Article. The background-color CSS property sets the background color of an element, either through a color value or the keyword transparent. /* Keyword values */. background-color: red; /* Hexadecimal value */. background-color: #bbff00;

  10. CSS Background Color

    How to Change the Background Color of an HTML Element. You can change the background color of an HTML element using the background-color CSS property and giving it a value of a color. p { background-color: pink; } With this code, the paragraphs are given a pink background. For example, this code will make all paragraph elements in your HTML ...

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    1. This question involves only wary use of ≤ 3 readable colours (e.g. an author used 3 colours: black for text, green for quotations, and blue for headings). One benefit is immediate distinction of an author's, from others', writing.

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    Background Color And Likeability Essay. Improved Essays. 604 Words; 3 Pages; Open Document. Essay Sample Check Writing Quality. Show More. The perception of likeability was rated by participants on a 1 to 10 scale. We grouped the data depending on the background colors: dark red, dark green, gold, navy blue, and black. We conducted one-way ...

  13. Background Information Examples for Essays and Papers

    Learn how to add background information to essays and papers. These background information examples will help you do it perfectly every time.

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    Specific colors make a room feel more spacious, relaxing, and luxurious, and different colors work well for different rooms. Nash suggests some color combinations and their supposed effects on humans and reminds us that color choices can "make or break" a house. 4. World without colour by Ella Gray.

  15. What is a Background in an Essay: Introducing Information

    Published by Josh Jasen at May 5, 2022. Background in an essay refers to material provided in a nonfiction essay or work that explains the context of the issue you will explore in the essay. This information is connected to the hook or opening statement, and then to the thesis statement, which you will write last at the end of the introduction.

  16. How to Start an Essay: 7 Tips for a Knockout Essay Introduction

    Intriguing ways to start an essay. There are many different ways to write an essay introduction. Each has its benefits and potential drawbacks, and each is best suited for certain kinds of essays.Although these essay introductions use different rhetorical devices and prime the reader in different ways, they all achieve the same goal: hooking the reader and enticing them to keep reading.

  17. Historical Background on Compensation Clause

    Footnotes Jump to essay-1 United States v. Will, 449 U.S. 200, 217-18 (1980). Jump to essay-2 The Declaration of Independence para. 11 (U.S. 1776). Jump to essay-3 1 The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787, at 244 (Max Farrand ed., 1911). Jump to essay-4 2 id. at 45. See also, e.g., id (statement of Gouverner Morris that [t]he value of money may not only alter but the State of Society ...

  18. Example of a Great Essay

    Your essay introduction should include three main things, in this order: An opening hook to catch the reader's attention. Relevant background information that the reader needs to know. A thesis statement that presents your main point or argument. The length of each part depends on the length and complexity of your essay.

  19. 8,000+ Free Background Paper & Paper Images

    8,545 Free images of Background Paper. Find an image of background paper to use in your next project. Free background paper photos for download. Royalty-free images. 1-100 of 8,545 images.

  20. CSS background-color property

    Definition and Usage. The background-color property sets the background color of an element. The background of an element is the total size of the element, including padding and border (but not the margin). Tip: Use a background color and a text color that makes the text easy to read. yes. Read about animatable Try it.

  21. Sora: A Review on Background, Technology, Limitations, and

    Sora is a text-to-video generative AI model, released by OpenAI in February 2024. The model is trained to generate videos of realistic or imaginative scenes from text instructions and show potential in simulating the physical world. Based on public technical reports and reverse engineering, this paper presents a comprehensive review of the model's background, related technologies, applications ...

  22. Change the Background Color of an Image for Free

    Change the colors of the background. Click Edit Image > Adjust. Then, under "Select area," choose Background from the drop-down menu. Move the sliders to the left or right to change the background color of the image. Adjust the temperature, tint, brightness, vibrance, sharpness, and more.

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  24. How to set Background Color in HTML

    In this article, we will see how to set the background color of an element. The purpose of using style attribute is to add styles to the elements. Using style attribute with different elements results in change in that element only.

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