Using Lester’s Visual Cues, specifically the information on colors, I wanted to examine a video advertisement by Lowe’s and examine it for the basic principles he discusses of the objective, comparative, and subjective methods, and sociological uses of color.
Regarding colors within the video, there are two different color palettes that play out between the two settings. One palette is found in the kitchen setting, and the other is found within the store. These palettes mix as the story unfolds, with characters entering different settings, such as the couple going to Lowe’s or the Lowe’s employee in the kitchen.
To begin with, the kitchen palette could be viewed subjectively as muted, with whites and grays that are comparatively associated with states of being–like freshness and cleanliness. Because of the tone of the light tones of the cabinet paint, the room appears larger–which Lester would argue is a subjective experience. The oven is also white, blending into setting. The woman is wearing a yellow shirt, and the man is wearing green—colors that complement each other and the surrounding scene, but could also be considered natural tones depending on the sociological association with color. Another association is the color of the video props: white dishes and silver stainless steel are visible through the kitchen, signaling a middle to upper class status in the United States.
As the scene closes out, after the woman has tried to stack several casserole dishes on top of each other in the oven, the color palette changes to the interior of a Lowe’s store, with the branded red jacket and blue signs. The overall scene is darker and a stark contrast from the previous because of the dark ovens and refrigerators the couple is walking past.
Once the scenes change again, an interesting contrast occurs with the addition of the Lowe’s employee within the home. His red jacket catches the eye of the reader first, which Lester indicates is because of the physical traits of the cornea. But the red jacket is just as important to this scene as is the light backdrop, which makes the red stand out more easily.