Character development and emotions take shape through many outlets. For anime, colors represent times of change for a character’s growth and the relationships they can have with others. Although music is the main way to see this change, these anime focus on the physicality of what it means to grow and be in the presence of others.
Colors in the animation not only appeal to the audience, but they foreshadow the main ideas. The easiest way for people to understand change is to see it happen. Loss, hope and bittersweet moments are all put into perspective with color changes and color choices.
10/10 Kaori embodies Color In Your Lie in April
Your lie in April shows the life of a struggling teenage pianist named Kousei Arima. After his mother’s death, Kousei could no longer hear the keys of the piano when he played. Taking his one passion and mother had made Kousei’s life boring and monotonous.
It wasn’t until a violinist named Kaori entered Kousei’s life that he was able to face his fear of playing the piano. Kaori had shown Kousei the light of being on stage and the light of life. Pay attention to the animation, little by little, the color scheme becomes brighter and brighter with Kaori. As Kousei begins to drown in darkness, Kaori literally lights up his life with her color until the very end.
9/10 Iroduku: The World In Colors shows the importance of colors and friendship
Iroduku follows a young witch named Hitomi who has lost her ability to see colors. Her grandmother sends Hitomi back decades to see if her younger self can help. When Hitomi goes back in time, she starts attending the same high school as her grandmother and meets many new people.
Hitomi meets a boy named Yuito, who apparently makes drawings and allows Hitomi to see colors. Although Hitomi can physically see the drawing’s colors, it symbolizes her coming out of her isolation. Since Hitomi has always felt like an outcast due to her color blindness, she isolated herself from people. Yuito and their friends show Hitomi how colorful life is when there are people to share the moments with.
8/10 Mob Psycho 100 relates emotions with colors
Mob Psycho 100 shows the life of a middle school student named Mob, who has telekinetic powers. Little by little, Mob tries to express himself better without being overwhelmed and letting his powers get out of control. Paying attention to Mob’s colors around him shows viewers how in control he is of his powers.
When Mob’s powers are lighter, it usually means he’s in control, but darker colors show he’s out of control. When Mob is overwhelmed, his gauge finally hits 100, showing that his emotions are overwhelmed. If he is angry, the color scheme will match with red. Mob Psycho 100 symbolizes emotions with colors and how they can be uncontrollable.
7/10 Hunter X Hunter shows the importance of color dynamics
Hunter x hunter is strongly influenced by the aspect of yin and yang, primarily light and dark. Gon, being Killua’s light, shows the optimistic side of things, while Killua shows the darker reality.
In the Chimera Ant arc, Gon and Killua’s color dynamic seems to shift. When Gon is about to fight Pitou, all the color and life seems to have left Gon’s presence. When Killua finally comes to Gon’s side, he is left in the dark of the reality of what he did. Gon is left in a coma where Killua has to be bright and optimistic in hopes of saving his dear friend.
6/10 Howl’s Moving Castle represents time with hair color
Howl’s Moving Castle shows the adventures of Sophie and Howl through the ages. These characters’ colors symbolize the past and present when Howl finds Sophie in the future.
Howl begins to obsess over his appearance in hopes of attracting Sophie to him. One of his obsessions was his blonde hair, which later Sohpie made to become his natural hair color. This hair color is also seen when Sophie first sees him become a wizard and eat a fallen star. Viewers can see how the past and history show Sophie and Howl’s development when they put colors into perspective.
5/10 Colors mean comfort and development for Violet Evergarden
Violet Evergarden took place during the times of war, leaving Violet as little more than a weapon. Violet’s developmental growth has been cut short due to her employment in the war. Violet has nothing to belong to, so Gilbert’s eyes serve as her comfort, as he is always there for her.
Violet is then attached to a green pendant that reminds her of their relationship with each other. The green pendant symbolizes her comfort to Gilbert and the way Violet can be herself and live without being a machine. Even during Violet’s saddest times, the colors take her back to when she first met Gilbert.
4/10 A quiet voice symbolizes color with redemption
Blocking everyone had taken its toll on Shoya from A quiet voice. Shoya struggles with being an outcast due to his past and cannot properly look at another person. The effects of bullying and isolation have left Shoya in a bad place mentally. Coming to terms with his childhood mistakes, Shouko is able to bring back color to him.
As they both struggle with the past, the colors of these animations seem to follow their darkest moments. From thoughts of suicide to the bright fireworks, glimpses of a second chance take shape like colors. In the last moments of A quiet voiceShoya can look at people properly and go on with his life.
3/10 Clannad’s yellow orbs give a second chance
Clannad shows the life of a high school student named Tomoya and how he struggles with his future. When Tomoya meets Nagisa, he finally understands what it means to have a family and to have a future.
Through Clannad, small yellow orbs are mentioned, but they don’t matter until Tomoya loses his family. As Tomoya is finally able to come to terms with his past, he is given a second chance at a happy life. The colors of this animation are symbolized by the bullets as they show redemption and love for the people surrounding Tomoya.
2/10 Mars comes in like a lion showing what it means to come out of the dark ages with color
Mars enters like a lion showcases the life of an orphan named Rei, who spends her time playing Shogi. Living every day like the rest, he eventually comes across a family of girls who take him in and show him what family means. Each of the girls teaches him a lesson about self-care and when it’s okay to ask someone for help.
Colors mean growth in the form of a whole new life for Rei going forward. The bright colors signify any time he can overcome a challenge from his past, as the girls symbolize the light in his life. Since Rei is still young, he learns what it means to mature and live for himself.
1/10 Your name reunites its characters with colors
Your name shows what it takes for Mitsuha and Taki to be together. Taki and Mitsuha can communicate with each other while switching between each other’s bodies. The nights usually separate them, while the day allows them to switch. The time of day has colors represented, which affects when they can communicate.
These characters individually represent opposites coming together. When a person mixes night and day or even colors, there is always an in-between. The colors to Your name follow the time when they can communicate and when they are separated. These characters must be patient, as the twilight comes when they can be reunited.
NEXT: Top 10 Emotional Anime Movies on Netflix