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Light Effect On Color

143. To illuminate a city, with the dull grim environment of streets and houses, a soft yellow glow will give warmth and tone; the greenish yellow of the Welsbach or the blue green of the mercury arc may even be desirable, but the same green or violet rays are ghastly in a house, and should never be permitted.

144. The warm glow of the yellow light, while pleasing to the complexion, is, however, objectionable as disturbing the color composition of dress or furnishings. A gaslight sends a yellow glow over all that it reaches, and has the same effect as the introduction of yellow into every color tint in the room. The walls that are red take on a scarlet hue; the scarlet ones are yellowed to orange; the blues become greenish.

145. In order that the decorator may more readily grasp the subject, we have arranged a table showing the color changes effected by rays of yellow, blue, green and violet:

Orange rays falling on white make it appear orange.

“ “ red it appears reddish-orange.

“ “ orange it appears deeper orange.

“ “ yellow it appears orange-yellow.

“ “ green it appears dark yellow-green.

“ “ blue it appears dark reddish-gray.

“ “ violet it appears dark purplish-gray.

“ “ black it appears brownish-black.

Yellow rays falling on white make it appear yellow.

“ “ red make it appear orange-brown.

“ “ orange make it appear orange-yellow.

“ “ yellow make it appear deeper yellow.

“ “ green make it appear yellowish-green.

“ “ blue make it appear slaty-gray.

“ “ violet make it appear purplish-gray.

“ “ black make it appear olive-black.

Green rays falling on white make it appear green.

“ “ red make it appear yellowish-brown.

“ “ orange make it appear grayish-leaf-green.

“ “ yellow make it appear yellowish-green.

“ “ green make it appear deeper green.

“ “ blue make it appear bluish-green.

“ “ violet make it appear bluish-gray.

“ “ black make it appear dark greenish-gray.

Blue rays falling on white make it appear blue.

“ “ red make it appear purple.

“ “ orange make it appear plum-brown.

“ “ yellow make it appear yellowish-gray.

“ “ green make it appear bluish-green.

“ “ blue make it appear deeper blue.

“ “ violet make it appear bluer.

“ “ black make it appear bluish-black.

Violet rays falling on white make it appear violet.

“ “ red make it appear purple.

“ “ orange make it appear reddish-gray.

“ “ yellow make it appear purplish-gray.

“ “ green make it appear bluish-gray.

“ “ blue make it appear bluish-violet.

“ “ violet make it appear deeper violet.

“ “ black make it appear violet-black.

146. The pale tints of electric lights, which make every face in a room look ghastly, will affect quite as disastrously every soft color in the furnishings. In ordinary gaslight a pair of white gloves looks yellow, and we have seen Welsbach lamps which threw out a violet-blue illumination, depressing in the extreme. Under a yellow glow, blues, greens, violets and purples are greatly changed. Under a violet glow, yellows and greens are ruined. To see all colors in about the same value that they possess by daylight one must have a light in which no color tone is apparent.

The question as to the disposition and intensity of the lights is of vital importance, and must be considered with the requirements of each particular room in mind.

147. For the drawing-room and reception-room it is desirable that all parts of the room be evenly lighted, without a pronounced glare in any particular part of the room. One of the most effective ways of accomplishing this is by distributing the lights around the room, either on the ceiling, in the cove or above a wide molding, so that the ceiling acts as a reflecting agent, and distributes an even tone of light to all parts.


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