5 Lessons from Nature
Why look to nature?
The runways and advertising encourage us to look at clothes - after all they want to convince us that their clothes are the ones that we need in our wardrobe. What this means is that we have been trained to say that an outfit looks good if you notice the clothes and how they look, rather than if a person looks happy and healthy.
There are two problems with this. The first if that if people are looking at your clothes and your body, they are more likely to notice those “problem areas” that you don’t want to draw attention to. The second, is that if we are looking a people’s clothes we are not looking them in the eye. Looking people in the eye is a key element of communication. This is a recipe for poor communication and low morale.
At BeYouTiful Style, I want people to look at you. That’s the whole of you. I want it to be easy for people to look at your face and not your clothes or your hips or your thighs. At the same time, I don’t want your face to be isolated from your body.
So how to we learn to look for the right things when picking clothes, when we have been trained to look at clothes and not how they make us look?
Sometimes it is easier to see things when we change this context. It can be easier to look at nature to see the impact of different colours coming together than it can be to look at clothes.
With that in mind, shall we begin?
Look at this picture.
What draws your eye the most - the waves or the rocks?
Lesson 1: Lighter colours draw the eye more than darker one.
In the above photo, all the colours work together well, but the waves draw the eye more than the rocks because they are lighter. When dressing, use lighter colours from your pallette where you want people to look. If you have thin wrists, use lighter bracelets. If you have nice ears, use lighter earrings. Conversely, wear darker colours where you don’t want people looking. So if you don’t want people to look at your thighs, then wear darker bottoms than tops.
Have a look at this sunset. What draws your eye?
Now look at and focus on the sea spray or the pale blue sky at the top of the image and try and not look at the sun.
Lesson 2: Brighter Colours draw the eye more than softer colours
The sea spray and the blue sky at the top of the image are both light, so based just on lesson 1 we would expect the eye to be drawn to them. But sun is also relatively light and is much brighter so it draws the eye. In fact, it is so bright compared to the rest of the photo that it is difficult to keep our attention off it.
When dressing, brighter items will stand out - whether this is your clothes or you face. If your face is brighter, you will look like the sun on the horizon - a bright circle that is disconnect from your body. While wearing bright clothes (no matter how gorgeous they are) can make it difficult for people to focus on your face.
If anyone ever tells you an outfit looks good, you just need to wear bright lipstick, its because the outfit is too bright for you and you need to bring some outfit to your face to draw attention back to you.
Now look at this photo. What draws the eye here? How easy is it to move between the rocks and the vegetation?
Lesson 3: Warm colours draw the eye more than cooler colours.
The plant and the rock are similar in lightness and brightness - the rock may be lighter and is clearly sunlight. However, the plant still draws the eye more as it is a warm undertone with the rocks have a cool undertone. That is, the vegetation is a yellow-green rather than a pure green and the rocks are a bluey-grey. Colours that have a warm overtone (yellow, orange, red) and those with a warm undertone (yellow-tinged colours) draw the eye more than cool colours (blues and purples and those colours with a blue tinge).
Now look at this photo. What draws your eye here?
How easy it it to move your eye between the tree and the background or the different elements of the background.
Lesson 4: The eye moves across colours with similar properties more easily than those with difference properties.
The dead tree is lighter, cooler, and brighter than the background. It stands out because it is lighter and brighter. The background has softer, warmer, darker colours. It is easier for the eye to move between the different elements of the background than between the background and the trees. This is the main reason why wearing colours from a single palette - ie colours with similar properties - that suits you is beneficial. It is easy to move from your feet to your head. If you don’t know your colours, wearing colours from a single palette will still make your outfit more cohesive.
Now look at the two photos below. Do the stones on the left of the first image look darker or lighter than the stones on the right of the second image?
Lesson 5: Colours look different depending on what you put them with.
The rocks in this picture are identical, in fact they come from the same image (below). But when you put it with next to a bright leaves the rocks look darker and brighter than in the image on the right. Similarly, if you want to look brighter and clearer, wear colours that are slightly softer than your natural colouring. If you want to look dull, wear clearer colours. And if you want to look completely put together, match the properties of your clothes with the properties of your face and body.
Photography: BeYouTiful Style
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