The main task of a color consultant is to choose the most flattering colors for a client. This may be in interior design, cosmetology, wardrobe consulting, advertising, photography or another industry. Some consultants assist professionals in a certain industry or they may hold training courses in color theory for a wide range of business or consumer clients. Color consultants use their expertise in understanding what moods certain colors tend to evoke as well as other theoretical aspects to decide on the best hues for each specific application.
For example, color consultants for fast-food restaurant chains rarely choose blue in a decor scheme as it's associated with tranquility and serenity. Blue is also not typically considered to be a color that stimulates the appetite. Studies show that orange, on the other hand, tends to make people feel both hungry and energized. Many fast-food restaurants choose orange or similar warm, energetic colors such as yellow or red. For a spa environment though, these warm colors are usually the last ones a color consultant would choose; blues and greens or white are popular picks for such restful spaces.
Color consultants who teach training courses usually have sample cards of many different hues and ask participants what they feel when looking at certain colors. They have to prepare course materials and handouts for students or have the class designed as an online model. Course participants often find they have certain shades of a color they are especially attracted to and others they dislike. Color consultants encourage people to live with colors they love. A color consultant working with a client to find hues for his or her home or business will pay a lot of attention to the person's likes and dislikes.
A consultant hired to choose the most flattering clothing or cosmetics for a client will definitely take likes and dislikes into consideration, but foremost will analyze the individual's hair, eye and skin undertones to find the best colors. Color consultants use their knowledge of warm, cool and neutral skin tones to understand what the most flattering hues are for each client. A color consultant may or may not select a few colors that tend to look good on all skin tones for a client to consider adding to his or her wardrobe.
Advertising color consultants must pick colors for campaigns that will create a desired emotion in the target audience. They often work with graphic designers or art directors on campaign projects. Color consultants who work on international projects have to be aware of different cultures. For example, in one country black may be suitable for funeral-related advertising, while in another red or white may be the right choice to connect well with the target market.