My personal love affair with the color blue

Flowers on the Terrace, detail, acrylic, Karen Gillis Taylor

If I had to choose between any of my painter’s tubes of colors, or my art quilt maker’s fabric colors, I would always put the color blue at the top of my choice. It is probably the most popular color of all people, I’m told, with good reason. While blue is the color of  good weather skies and seas, it evokes deeper emotions within me, besides the joy of wonderful conditions for life outdoors.

The color of romance is blue, in this painting I made that indicates the lover has sent flowers, and the couple are somewhere else now, having had the moment at the table at night where the blooms communicated their magic.

Jazz Town, detail, acrylic, KG Taylor

Music is such an important part of my life, and jazz has deep meanings in our family. My brother Bob Gillis is a world-class jazz musician and composer, and my husband Rob loves jazz and supports the players and the genre all the time. Blue is the color of jazz. There could be no other, it is simply ingrained in this art form, hands down.

At the pond, town of Niwot, Colorado

Sky with streak of light and color, Boulder County, Colorado

Water and sky are the things colored blue that all people find reaching into their souls. We trust and love the feelings of peace and even a sense of something that talks to our spirits when we see such scenes in nature. Nature is full of blue, is nearly defined by blue.

Blues in the Night, quilt design by Karen Gillis Taylor, Quiltmaker magazine, 1990

Blues in the Night, 4 block detail

This is one of my favorites among all the quilts I have designed. It’s meant to be made of scraps of fabric we collect and love. It evokes our love of blue jeans and country life. Need I say more?

Watertown, detail, acrylic, KG Taylor

My cityscapes place any and all kinds of architecture side by side. I can’t really apologize for this eclectic habit, because I’m only an observer of art history and real life towns. In this image, blue, black and white are softened by yellow, the color of lamplight and people living within. Real cities have buildings of complex design not far from humble homes. I love that. REally do.

Blue bowl, photo, KGT

I took a Free School ceramics class when I was in college, and learned a little bit about how glazes are made and built into the finished pot or dish. Already liking blue and white pottery, things just kept building in my own love for design of pottery, and folk art of other countries. So now I am collecting blue bowls. It is not an expensive thing to collect, and you can always eat your cereal or soup out of them, so it doubles as useful and intimate.

As a full spectrum artist, I could not wish to limit my color palette in any project, ever. But today I  remind myself that blue is best.

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5 Responses to “My personal love affair with the color blue”

  1. meta Says:

    Blue is beautiful!


  2. Nancy Says:

    I love blue so much, I wrote a poem to the color blue when I was a teenager! I remember your quilt pattern Blues in the Night! My brother asked me make it… in brown. Ugh.


  3. Sarah Schultz Says:

    Yes Karen ,BlUE is my favorite color also ! I think that is why I was attracted to your cityscapes. They are exceptional in color and mood. Thank you for continuing to write and paint with lots of blue. I also like brown. : ) and Jazz too.


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