colour blind design

Seeing color is a physical function. There are parts of the eye for seeing contrast and seeing color. Our eyes have three different receptors for color, but they do not correspond directly with an RGB color model. That’s why there is only red-green or blue-yellow color blindness. A lack of either of two different receptors (long and medium wavelength) lead to red-green color-blindness. A lack of the short wavelength receptor leads to blue-yellow blindness.

Richard: You might want to look up tetrachromatic vision. I ran across the term while looking up color-blindness. It’s a condition of having 4 different color receptors rather than the normal 3. Apparently, there is some evidence of some women having 4 receptors. It may give them superior color vision, or it may do nothing.

urm, it’s silly, but if you scroll down to the middle here:

where maddox talks about lipstick colors? in his sample he claims that an average human eye can’t distinguish between those two? i see them as distinct shades of red, the one on the right is more orange, and the one on the left is more blue. does anybody else see the obvious difference?

color is such a subjective thing, none of us sees colors “the same” even if we are not considered color blind. then you add light and neighboring colors to the mix and it all becomes even more subjective.

Slight red-green colour blind here. Fail the tests but no problem seeing traffic lights.

Good enough colour for forms but I’ll tend to stay away from graphics, photo and other colour work. My strength is with complex mechanicals so it doesn’t much matter.


Another colourblind designer posting here. I’ve never found it to be a problem, although I’ve never really told an employer before employment about it. I remember having a problem with a computer program a few years back, specifically with getting trained on it and the instructor said to use the Yellow & Green button - but to me it was just one colour. I’d consider this to be a problem in how the UI was developed, not so much mine.

I got a new job recently and had to do a medical check before I could sign the contract. One of the things they picked up was that I was colourblind, I got a call from the CEO about this before I signed the contract. Strangely he wasn’t too concerned that I was colourblind, just curious as to how severe it was and what coping methods I chose to get around it.