Monday, March 22, 2010

Im wearing a navy blue T-shirt

    Popular T-shirt Colors of Alfred Art students                    64% of 75 students where

 Black White Gray  Green Purple and Blue

Color trends have been forecasted since the early 16th century. Americas first color forecaster and developer of the Standard American color card, Margaret Hayden Rorke, has been behind the color forecast for more than four decades.  Color aside from pattern association has been affected by events, limitations to color dyes and mass, high culture swings. World War I caused a radical shift in fashion color due to the supply cut off of German dyes from the British blockade. When the fashion industries ran out of imported dyes the textile mills produced standard Olive Drab and Battleship Gray. 

Other color associations come from our history in industrial trends, such as the Art Nouveau era with it floral like designs and bold color lithographs or modern international styles in housing. The color of a T-shirt can leave many readings. One shirt may induce a viewer with the feelings of happiness due to a bright color or even feelings of nostalgia from a washing machine faded blue. Some colors can bring us closer to nature by being in harmony with the natural world around us.  Red may be bold and dominate or signify political standpoint.

            My question for Alfred students is, what colors are we wearing? Are we full of school pride wearing lots of purple and gold, are we patriotic, nostalgic, or earthy? How do the colors of our shirts describe us?

Knowing that I would only take a small survey of the campus I collected data from only Harder Hall. I divided Harder into sections, ceramics, painting, and design.  I noticed that certain colors tended to always repeat and be present even if only once. In Ceramics the colors green, black and white took up 15 out of the 25 shirt colors. In painting and photo 16 out of 25 were wearing green, purple, black and blue. In design 15 out of 25 were wearing black, white and gray. 

There seemed to be four mainstream colors of grey, black, green and white.  There were not obvious distinctions between the colored shirts and different disciplines. I did notice, however, that green, navy blue and purple were popular color choices. Though even though they were far and few some wore yellows, pinks and reds on occasion.

The majority of the shirts were made from cotton and usually simple in design or solid. I asked a few students as to why they might wear a cotton shirt over another and most replied that cotton shirts where comfortable, and where not costly incase something stained them. Many of the shirts worn in harder might be classified as “work and studio only” shirts. The weather is also a factor seeing as the further we get into spring and summer the brighter colors we wear. However, still in Alfred I will find that many students and staff still wear lots of black, grey, blue, and white all the way till Hot Dog Day..

            Colors in industry and of Harder Halls building have been designated to various meanings, For instance yellow, signifies the gas line to the kilns or the fire lanes, grey references the floors and walls.  Colors on clothing have also been used similarly. Some students feel that certain colors bring out prominent qualities in their personality, “ I am a very purple person because purple brings out the color in my eyes.”  Colors also have psychological meanings, white standing for purity, blue for calmness and yellow for anxiety.

Morally some colors have been known to cause trouble if worn in certain locations or situations. Wearing red to a funeral was once and may still be considered taboo. Some may also live by the rule that you cannot wear white after Labor Day. Wearing orange on St Patrick’s Day might signify a cultural loyalty. But then wearing orange to a Syracuse Basketball game is next to godly.

Socially students will sometimes wear a color repeatedly and can then become known for a certain color. A senior, Orange Mike, was nicknamed for the orange clothing he used to wear on a daily basis.  Out of the corner of my eyes I can often see friends coming because of a specific color sweater or shirt I know them for wearing.

In Alfred many I do not think are aware of latest color trends, Alfred specifically most are limited if only shopping at Wall-mart and area department stores to specific colors.  However, students and community members alike rely on other sources like the Internet, TV and catalogs to advise them on what to wear. Still Alfred art students still I feel have a specific color trend of their own.

1 comment:

  1. As a member of group 3 (Alfred as a personal map) I think that this small sampling is something very like what our group aims to achieve in giving a sample taste of what it is to live and work in Alfred. I am wondering about the ways we might visualize this information (or audio-ize? as we are talking about audio components) in order to make use of it. I also wonder if the idea of collecting a random sampling as a way of thinking through data and trends on campus is something that ought to be happening in areas other than what color are we wearing, but what are we eating in the dining hall, when are we sleeping, where are we getting our coffee from ect.