What colour is your name?
Have you ever thought about the colours in your name?
For some people with the rare sensory trait called grapheme-colour synesthesia, this is the way their brain ‘sees’ letters and numbers. For those who don’t know, grapheme-colour synesthesia is a condition in which people associate specific colours with particular letters and numbers. I remember learning about the condition in a college art class and found it fascinating. I stared hard at black words on white paper and just saw black words on white paper, so I never gave it another thought.
Until a few weeks ago when I came across a blog, that led me to the colours of my name. Designer and artist, Bernadette Sheridan, who has grapheme-colour synesthesia, has built an online, interactive tool that can generate the letters of your name into a colour sequence. The colour sequence is made up of one specific colour for every letter in the alphabet and identifies how people with grapheme-colour synesthesia see your name.
Bernadette created the tool to allow us to understand how she experiences the world and so we can see our names come to life in colour. After Bernadette created the synesthesia gallery, made up of the names of everybody she knew, she noticed a pattern in which the colours of their names matched their personality. “The colour of your name triggers an overall assumption based on how light, dark, saturated or dominant your name appears, a lot of that is based on the vowels in your name.”, Bernadette writes in a follow-up blog.
I’m not going to lie, I was very excited to throw my name into the generator and see what colours it spat out. Optimistic Emma was expecting something bright, cheery and unusual (I like to think to match my personality). Emma is made up of the three primary colours. Kind of bright, kind of cheery but nowhere near unusual. Find out what colour your name is…