International Colour Conference

Proud to have my abstract submission accepted for oral presentation at the forthcoming AIC2021 Conference.

Data visualization: The power and persuasive capacity of color‘ explores the way in which colour in data visualizations can be used to suit the author’s agenda. Specifically, the way colour can support or skew meaning, depending on the author’s aims and objectives.

In addition to participating in the conference, I was also appointed to the scientific committee for the conference tasked with the job of reviewing abstract submissions relevant to my area of expertise.

The AIC2021 conference will be held entirely online and you can find out more about the dates and program via the AIC2021 website.

Data visualization: The power and persuasive capacity of color – Abstract
Data visualization is a branch of visual communications that aims to communicate information, usually in a academic, business, educational, or political context. As such, it is purpose-driven and, while its overall goal it to convey information, it is often designed to convey aims and intentions linked to an agenda associated with the information. In this latter scenario, color can and has been harnessed to effectively convey and reinforce these aims and intentions.   

A specific form of visual communications, data visualization is generally two-dimensional and static but may also be three-dimensional and features elements and principles of design that are employed to visually arrange and present data information.  While design elements play an important role, color in particular can have an enormous impact on how the data is perceived and interpreted. Specifically, depending on the intentions embedded in data visualizations, color has the capacity to conceal or reveal information. Color can influence and skew meaning, and in doing so, change how people evaluate and respond to the data. In some recent examples of data visualization, the fine line between information dissemination and agenda-focused propaganda is crossed primarily due to the way color is used to present data.

In this context, both the mechanics of visual perception as well as visual literacy play a role in determining how the intended audience perceives and engages with data visualization and in turn, how they may respond to the meaning embedded in data visualization. This paper explores data visualization, the mechanics of visual perception, and visual literacy. In addition, through examination of a number of recent case studies, this paper investigates the power and persuasive capacity of color to influence and perhaps alter meaning.

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