Being and Non-Being Blue

Being and Non-Being Blue

On my About page, I make brief mention of the blue feather icon. The feather is not actually blue but rather the blue is an optical effect, a visual illusion.

Turns out, the Morpho butterfly, common in butterfly exhibitions due to it’s vivid colour, uses a similar trick.

In another angle on blue, it took 3 decades to figure out how to make blue LED lights (I don’t mean blue tinted covers). That discovery netted a Nobel prize. By producing the final primary colour, we could make LED & LCD TV’s, smart phone screens, light-based water sterilization, and the blend that creates true white light. Lights and screens have never been the same.

And yet another blue; shorter frequency blue lasers allowed the development of higher density storage. This allowed vastly more data to be stored on a standard optical disc, including HD movies (Blu-Ray).  

And of course, we associate blue with Sadness, as personified in the movie Inside Out.

Blue is a key aspect of our window on the world.

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.


  1. Jim

    Cool stuff. It always blows my mind to realize that the colors we see and associate with an object are the colors that are *not* absorbed by the object, but rather reflected away. So an orange, for example, absorbs every color BUT orange, so we call it by what it rejects in the white light spectrum.

    1. Right, Jim. And in the case of some blues, even that is an illusion.

      When I studied colour theory, I discovered the difference between print and on-line media.

      In print, colours are created by inks that reflect as you describe. The colour model is called CMYK: Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and K, Black.

      But colours produced by screens are the colours we see – little pixels of red, green, and blue that are blended by combination and brightness to produce over 16 million colours.

      The model is opposite in some ways. (my other web site has several tabs on colour, left over from what was once a large web site on web design)

      And yet all of this is just a tiny band of the electromagnetic spectrum that includes vastly more information than our eyes can recognize.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest