Isolation and loneliness in colour
Semantic Colour Space, depth dimension.

The colours blue, green and black are the most commonly used in visual communication depicting isolation and loneliness. In the Semantic Colour Space these three primary colours are all located at the back. In the depth dimension this suggests a meaning with a strong focus on the inner world of thought.

The three primaries, in the context of isolation and loneliness, might express the following notions:

blue: corner, distant; space;
green: crossing, barricade;
black: stop, shut-up.

Three primary colours and their corresponding keywords in the context of isolation and loneliness
Blue-on-green in the Semantic Colour Space

In the context of being alone in a closed space the blue-on-green colour combination, and the semantically associated hue turquoise blue (blue-2), expresses a compelled isolation. In the case of Covid-19 for example, that would be a disciplinary measure imposed on citizens by the government, or self-imposed for fear of contamination. This situation for civilians could metaphorically be described as civilians chained to their homes.

Use of blue-on-green in combination with blue-2 in the Illustration by MARTIN TOGNOLA for an article in the Wall Street Journal “What Covid-19 Taught Us About the High Cost of Isolation” (April 10, 2021).
Blue-2 as a background colour. House locked in chain and padlock. Source: https://stock.adobe.com/images/house-locked-in-chain-and-padlock/71846796

When the emphasis of isolation is placed on the feeling of utter abandonment as a mode of a depressed mental state, the colour-combination black-on-blue and the semantically associated hue dark grey (black-1), is frequently used in visual communication.

Black-on-blue in the Semantic Colour Space
Black-on-blue for the book cover “A Biography of Loneliness: The History of an Emotion” by Fay Bound Alberti, Oxford University Press
Black-1 for illustrating “The physical symptoms of loneliness” article October 26, 2020, by Abacare Source: https://abacare.org.uk/2020/10/26/the-physical-symptoms-of-loneliness/

In case the isolation is characterized as a trap or imprisonment, the colour combination black-on-green and the semantically associated hue olive drab (black-3) are best suited.

Black-on-green in the Semantic Colour Space
Trapped, a drama by director Richard Fleischer from the late 40s, rediscovered and promoted in the colour combination black-on-green.
Black-on-olive drab in the film poster for Trapped (2016)
Aspects of isolation and loneliness in the Semantic Colour Space

The Semantic Colour Space reveals the close relationship of concepts found in the colours of visual communication expressing loneliness and isolation.

Film poster for Caged (2021). Black-on-turquoise.

The poster for the film Caged combines different aspects of the idea of loneliness and isolation. The use of turquoise in the background conjures up the notions of chains and forced isolation. This ambiguous hue can be seen as blue-green as well as green-blue. With black in the foreground we can evoke the feeling of being imprisoned (black-on-green), and the presence of an ensuing depressed mental state (black-on-blue).

Inez Michiels

UEFA Champions League promotional colour combinations
Analysing the symbols and colours of the UEFA Champions League main visual communication.