Seeing Red over Cola

Seeing Red over Cola
  • Jun 6, 2018

Seeing Red over Cola

Did you know you would recognise the distinct red colour of a Coca-Cola can?

Red Can of Cola

Taste Tests Coke vs Pepsi

Research at Baylor College of Medicine attempted to explain why Coca-Cola outsells Pepsi despite Pepsi being preferred in blind taste tests "Pepsi Challenge".

When the focus was soley on flavour Pepsi won. However we all know Coke has spent a considerable advertising budget associating their brand with fun, world peace, racial harmony, love etc. Just like Qantas who sell experiences not flights the experience of drinking Coke is what keeps them on top of perceptions.

CMYK vs RGB colour model

What colours are we actually seeing?

Our eyes and brains register and 'see' RGB, so to humans everything is in RGB values.
The RGB color model is an additive colour model. The colour model preferred by printers is the CMYK model - a subtractive color model.

The primary purpose of the RGB colour model is for the display of images in electronic systems, such as on mobile phones, TV screens and computer monitors and it’s also used in digital photography. So when we go to a Printer on the Gold Coast and want a blow up of our favourite holiday snap there are a few issues at play-:

The Phone Holiday Snap

  • The image may appear pixelated when blown up
  • The colour model used for printing is CMYK - your phone displays in RGB



Pizza with Coke

Colour and Perception

Advertising works on appealing to our emotions and associations. Is the picture of the pizza and Coke appealing to you? Cadbury is renown for fiercly trying to prevent rivals from using a specifc colour Pantone 2865c (Purple). Pantone is a proprietry colour model owned by a US company.

"Colors can be measured and quantified in various ways; indeed, a person's perception of colors is a subjective process whereby the brain responds to the stimuli that are produced when incoming light reacts with the several types of cone cells in the eye."

source Color Vision Wikipedia

So now you may be wondering just what am I seeing in that Coke can.

Professional graphic designers who create memorial stationary understand colour.

Memorial Stationary Video
Video Memorial Stationary

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