In Lancashire, our buildings are conservatively coloured. We don’t use each feature as an excuse to add a new colour. I wish we did.
While some of the combinations a visitor will see in New Orleans are startling, really there’s no idea why they should be. It turns out that purple, pinky-orange and beige go well with green banana leaves.
I would never in a million years dream this colour combination up… no, I take that back. A year in New Orleans ought to do it. The painting is applied with such care too: how much easier it would have been to slap a single colour on that pillar?
It does help to be in a sunny place. When colours dance together in the light, pretty much anything goes.
It has taken a good few trips for me to get used to the imagery of New Orleans too. I don’t think I’ve seen so many skeletons anywhere, in the shops, markets and even on the garage doors.
But there’s a consistency to it: on the right of the picture, the smart terracotta, yellow, white and green building sits perfectly well with the grungier left.
Here, the shutters draw the eye, but the pale blue and fuchsia pink are pulled together by purple accents on the steps, down the edge of the building and on the finials, while the white is so neat and fresh.
I didn’t get a great picture of the last one, but I loved the combination of green, teal, pale yellow, lilac and white, and the patterns they create.
Every one of these colour combinations challenges me in a different way, but I am secretly thrilled by their care, individuality and freedom. It shows how a community can resist the urge to batten things down, and instead inspire each other to do their own thing. For who says which colours are right and which are wrong?
This post is inspired by HeyJude who invites us to share strong contrasting colours.