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Orange photography isn’t something I normally think about. It’s a colour I don’t often wear and a colour I think gets overlooked. However, Since I love autumn/fall I feel this is where orange comes into its own, it’s a time we see a lot of orange everything so it felt like a good time to take another look at orange.
I’ve always been obsessed with colour, I find colour uplifts me like nothing else. If I’m having a bad day it’s colour I turn to as the answer. I also find that colour can make you stand out in a sea of sameness and if we are talking about standing out nothing does that better than orange.
And all of us at some point have gasped at a beautiful orange sunset.
The Colour Orange
because of the red in it, yet does it in a warm-hearted, non-aggressive way because of the yellow. The name orange for the colour is believed to have been invented in 1512; before that, it was just called yellow-red. It’s the hottest of all colours and just demands quietly to be noticed.
Also, did you know that the plane’s black boxes are actually orange?
These quotes really sum up orange.
Orange is like a man convinced of his own powers
Red brought nearer to humanity by yellow.
Colour Orange Meaning
Orange is a friendly, lively colour and is said to be stimulating mentally and physically. It’s what is known as a high arousal colour and is known to stimulate conversation, appetite, spontaneity, and impulsiveness.
It can make people optimistic, uplifted, cheerful, and energetic.
Orange is a very useful colour when it comes to photography. Just by changing the hue and pose of a model you can really change the feeling.
Using bright oranges will grab attention and is great if you are trying to create something cheap and cheerful that will be noticed. Think of a girl in black sunglasses against a bright orange background looking at the camera.
If you add more yellow into the above photo it calms it down making it more palatable on the eye. Have the model with a coffee cup leaning towards the camera and smiling and it beckons people in. Toning more to the yellow side makes a photo is open, encouraging conversation.
Take the tone to the more pink end you have something more romantic, think about a girl behind an orange piece of voile for example with her eyes closed and her lips pouted.
If you add more red you get a deeply sensual and opulent-looking photo. Think about a girl on a bed with saffron velvet sheets dressed in gold.
It really is a versatile colour.
Colour Orange Symbolism
One can not mention orange without a big nod to Hinduism. The orange robes worn in Hinduism for over 200 years were originally saffron dyed, can you imagine the expense? Orange is a colour used in many cultures in religious celebrations and has many religious connotations.
Unfortunately in western culture orange has become associated with ‘cheapness’ and ‘unrefined’ mainly thanks to companies like Easy Jet using orange in their logos. Often our bad experiences with these companies can lead us to mistrust this colour, which makes me very sad.
Colour Orange Represents
Warm, energetic, and fun orange can bring out the playful side of us; it’s like a mischievous child who you can’t help but love. Too much orange though can make people too childlike and can overstimulate children.
If the orange has more pink in it can be seen as romantic and of course, the earth orange tones remind us of harvest and autumn. It’s also a colour associated with sweetness; think oranges, marmalade, nectarines, and those spicy saffron colours are linked to abundance.
Orange in Photography
It’s a colour you don’t see a lot in Photography so when used it makes a statement whatever the picture you are creating. For real attention and to be dramatic do full-on monochrome and play with the tone of the orange in editing to see how it changes the picture.
Used it the right way you can draw people in, encourage them to be playful and more spontaneous, and spread optimism.
It can be used as an alternative to pink for a romantic feel to pictures and as a sensuous opulent photo If you don’t want to go full-on red.
Orange Photography Background
I often get asked what I use for coloured photography backgrounds, particularly in the UK where coloured walls and painted brick are hard to come by.
If you have the money and space then investing in a backdrop stand and backdrop paper is a great idea, however, if like me you don’t then anything will do. I find sheets work well and I also have painted pieces of MDF in certain colours, which I hang up and use for some of my backgrounds. You can in editing change the colour of a wall but this can be tricky.
Creating the Orange Aesthetic
You can go as wild or as small as you want here, go monochrome orange or just add a splash. Start small if you are nervous but once you start with orange, like me you may become addicted.
There are so many great orange props you can use to add a pop of colour to a photo.
In fact, most items come in orange colours, think orange phone, orange appliance, orange anything.
However the props I always like best are flowers.
If you are adding flowers to your photo you also might want to think about the meanings of the flowers to match the mood of the photos. I’ve obviously not gone into every flower, just a few of the more widely used and available ones.
Orange flowers make a statement bright, bold, and eye-catching they really can add something to a picture.
Orange flowers are bright and bold, and thus they are known to symbolize feelings of excitement and enthusiasm. Some of the top flowers that are available in orange include lilies, tulips, marigolds, and zinnias.
They stand for fascination which could be a crush or a person at work you really admire. They also stand for achievement so would be great in a graduation photo for example.
And they are the flower used to say ‘I believe in you’. They also make the perfect addition to any Halloween-themed shot.
The official flower of November, seems a perfect flower to add to November photos.
Symbolises joy, so use as a happy smiling photo, maybe with a flower over the eye.
Symbolising pride and boldness; use is a sensual red/orange coloured shoot to add interest.
A flower with duality. On the positive side, it can symbolise elegance, inner strength, change, creativity, and dignity. On the opposite side betrayal, dishonesty, and instability.
Think of an orange-lit room, with a woman sat on the bed and a man with his back to us and a smashed vase with dahlias in on the floor.
One of my favorites and apparently the fifth most favourite flower in the world. These flowers work great for portraits. They symbolise innocence, cheerfulness and purity.
Planning An Orange Photoshoot
- Decide what emotion/vibe/story you want to create.
- Are you going to go all orange, hints of orange or orange, and a complementary colour?
- Get the props together you will need and decide on the location
- Take the photo
- Edit the photo
- Post the photo to Instagram.
Orange is a versatile colour and seems to compliment a lot of other colours. Depending on the emotion of the photo will depend on which colour you add-in.
Here are some of my favourites.
Since orange is a mix of yellow and red it naturally goes with yellow, think autumn and you have it. If using these two colours together make sure they are of the same hue so they work together. Think light orange and yellow for spring, deep orange and mustard for autumn – two great colours together.
Again orange has red in it so naturally, they go together. Think about opulent orange and deep reds for a sensual picture. Or bright red and orange for a photo that really stands out and demands attention.
Golds and Browns
A richer orange goes perfectly with a chocolate brown or a golden tone. A warm welcoming combination that can’t help us think of cold days in front of the fire.
One of my most favourite pairings ever is blue and orange; there is something about it that makes me so happy. From a mix of cobalt blue and bright orange to a more aqua blue and orange, they just work so well together. These colours always seem to create something that is fresh and retro.
A crisp white will provide a backdrop for yellow to shine. Think about the girl with an orange bobble hat in the snow. It’s such a fresh and striking combination. Cream works just as well but is less vivid.
Got a flair for the dramatic? Then mix with black to create something striking. Burnt orange looks great with black and can give something a futuristic element.
Not often seen together but since they both have an element of red in them they can work great together. I love mixing pink tops with orange skirts, they almost look like they shouldn’t go but they just do.
Orange Photography Through The Seasons
While we often associate orange with autumn/fall it is a great colour to use in all seasons.
Orange can be a much-needed energy boost in a winter picture; think scarf, gloves, coat, or even an orange mug or coffee pot. Make the oranges more on the warm side with more red in to really make the picture cosy. And who can forget those Christmas candied oranges?
Spring for me is all about pastels and is a great time to incorporate light orange with more pink tones a more peachy orange. Nothing says let’s wake up like orange. Think orange flowers, a pretty peach dress, tulips, peach-painted Easter eggs.
Summer is when we get to play with bright oranges and have lots of fun. You can get away with much bright colder oranges in the summer.
Go bright, be bold and do a whole orange picture for a really vibrant look and feel. And mix orange and blue; it really gives a fresh summery feel to photos.
What I can I say about autumn and orange? They are such perfect partners. The colours of the trees, the sunsets and sunrises, and the pumpkins. It’s the perfect season to play with orange and a great place to start.
Think autumn fires, cosy autumn woodland pictures, and nature at her finest.
We love representation, and Ms. Marvel is set to have that. Executively produced by Kevin Feige, Bisha K. Ali, Sana Amanat, Adil El Arbi, and Bilall Fallah, I am SO excited for this!
editing orange can be a tricky one, and for me, changes with the seasons.
Here are some hashtags for you to try.
#orange #leaves🍁 #orangeville #foliage #saturated #colorporn #colororange #orangecoloredsky #ihaveathingwithcolors #colortheworldorange #orangeismyfavoritecolor #orangecolors #loveorangecolor #colorofthedayorange #orangeismycolor #thecolororange #colormood #colormyworld #splashofcolor #complementarycolors #orangecolor #colorsmakemehappy #orangeandyellow #hotcolors #warmcolours #brightcolors #warmcolorscheme #warmautumncolors #brightcolorskeepmewarm #warmcolors #happycolors #sunlightphotography #colorsofautumn #ilovecolor #warmlight #contrasts #colorfullife #colorshot #photocolorshot #earthcolors #colorinspiration #colorpalette #colorlover #coloursofautumn #amazingcolors #beautifulcolors #sunsetismyfavoritecolor #whatsyourfavoritecolor #myfavoritecolorisoctober #favoritecolor #goeswitheverything #colourorange #colourgram #orangecolours #orangecolouredsky #orangecolourday #orangecolourlover #orangecoloured #orangecolourtheme #orangecolourscheme #colourmeorange #orangecoloursky #leavesofinstagram #flowercolors
I hope you have found this helpful and you now feel a bit more able to use the colour orange in your photos. I’d love to see what you create so please tag any photos with #beemademedoit and I’ll take a look.
And if you have any questions please feel free to ask.