Colorblind Clients

Author: Anonymous,  Design Fail Submission

Lesson: Everyone does not see color the same way and some don't see color at all.

I was heading to the 3rd meeting regarding a client’s logo design. We were stuck on color. The logo, a motorcycle, was a red meant to match the actual client’s motorbike. At least that was the intention. It seems like an easy enough request. However, we went through color palette after color palette; the client was declaring “too blue, too orange, too dark, too pink…” There was not a single red that he would agree was the exact hue. We could not discover a color that existed in his head. Making it more difficult; evaluating or measuring the color of the actual bike was not an option.

We went back and forth, on and on, until I insisted that screens are not the way to proof and approve the color. I shared three color palettes, with printouts, during our second meeting. Now at meeting number three, and another round of palettes, I brought along my Pantone book. Holding colors at arm’s length, in natural light, I pushed the client to look at the colors. As we began discussing, it became apparent; he did not see the color he desired. As the conversation continued, he divulges that he was color blind.

Now, when color does not align quickly, I look for clues or bring something along to see that they can identify the colors.

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