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Illuminating - 2021 Color of the Year

  • Hilary Davidson
  • 04 January

Lemon shirt,
yellow brick road,
sounds like the beginning of Dr. Seuss poem.

But seriously, “Illuminating” yellow has been declared the Pantone color of the year, and we couldn’t be happier! PANTONE 13-0647 to be exact, is a lemon zest typically used in marketing, bold art, baby blankets and some wild kitchen cabinets. This particular shade is commonly associated with spontaneity and amusement, a much-needed boost of morale as we begin a new year with high hopes for a fresh start.

But why does yellow work so well? It’s a surprising pop of color that stands out against a hint of darkness. There’s a fresh jolt of energy every time you see it – and art, marketing, and design all over the world benefit from its bright punch to the senses.

Shown above: Sylvester & Tweety by Lisa Lopuck

In art, a delicate use of yellow can help provide visual rhythm by contrasting against the other colors and taking the eye on a journey throughout the artwork. In Wonder Woman – Themyscira’s Champion by Blend Cota, the yellow rope cuts through the composition with daring design and a glowing presence. The color, along with movement and style, embody Wonder Woman in a visual presentation like no other.

Shown above: Wonder Woman – Themyscira’s Champion by Blend Cota

In everything else, yellow becomes an iconic color associated with golden arches, a soft drink or your favorite sticky note. Take Winnie the Pooh – A Heroes Parade by Eric Dowdle, for example. We can all identify Christopher Robin because of his classic yellow shirt, and everywhere he goes, he seems to jump off the canvas with his positivity.

Shown above: Winnie the Pooh - A Heroes Parade by Eric Dowdle

Whether you’re an artist or a decorator, adding yellow can bring optimism, warmth and clarity… it seems to naturally be a part of the hue. We could all use a breath of fresh air and wish you a creative and high-spirited year ahead! Cheers!

Shown above: Follow the YELLOW BRICK ROAD™ by Thomas Kinkade Studios


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