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Pantone and its Color of the Year

You might have some friends working in design or in advertising that seem to be eagerly waiting for December to come. Are they looking at their mobile phones or laptops more often than usual during the first week of the month? Contrary to what you can think, it is not Christmas that make them feel this way, at least not entirely. Indeed, most of them are simply waiting for Pantone to unveil its color for the next year. Although it could seem banal for most of us, this unveiling helps creators all over the world.

Who is Pantone?

Pantone is not an individual but a business located in the United States. Established in 1866, this company was then specialized in the creation and the production of color charts for the cosmetic industry. Almost 100 years later, the business sets oneself apart with the invention of a universal spectrum for printers called the Pantone Matching System (PMS). This system aims to itemize all nuances and shades with a very specific name and formula. Since shade differences could be possible when printing, like for example when two different printers were in charge of printing a product, the Pantone Matching System successfully managed to standardize colors to the delight of many. There are now more than 3000 Pantone colors created to this day.

What also stands Pantone out from its competitors was the creation and the utilization of ten different tints to create a color when only four were then used. Besides creating a richer color and more declinations, the tint was also more precise and more easily repeatable. Indeed, the four-color printing system that was used before only focussed on four colors which were cyan, magenta, yellow and black. Lawrence Herbert, who had just bought the company in the sixties, invented a way to use ten basic tints including warm red, white transparent,  dark blue and purple. Five other tints were added to these in the eighties, increasing the total to fifteen.

For nearly 20 years, Pantone wisest advisors meet to decide what color should be nominated as THE color for the following year. All started in 2000 with the Cerulean tint, a soft blue-grey color, selected to represent the new millennial and the technology era. Thereafter, Pantone chose over the last years some vibrant orange, some discrete turquoise, and some strong pink. Last year, the Pantone color of 2018 was UltraViolet, thus dethroning a green named Greenery, which was inspired by nature. The purple tint was described as both spiritual and artistic. It is now time to say goodbye to UltraViolet and welcome 2019 and its new color!

The Chosen Color of 2019

Here comes the part you have been all waiting for: the unveiling of 2019 color! *Drum roll*

Living Coral (16-1546) is this year’s winner! Leatrice Eiseman, executive director ar Pantone, described this special tint as “an animating and life-affirming coral hue with a golden undertone that energizes and enlivens with a softer edge.” Directly inspired by nature, and more specifically by sea corals, Living Coral is both positive and dynamic. This color will certainly be appreciated by spring and summer collections and accessories. Do not hesitate to include this color in your logo, especially if your business works in the artistic or the well-being field. This color is the perfect tint to give both a unique and fun look to all your projects. For more information, take a look at Living Coral RGB and the HEX on Pantone website.

In conclusion, do you like the color of 2019? Do you have any suggestions for 2020?

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