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How One Man Saw Cannes in Colour for the Very First Time


EnChroma explains their Innovation Lions-shortlisted project with FCB and Valspar – to a colour blind interviewer

How One Man Saw Cannes in Colour for the Very First Time

From the peachy pink of the rosé to the teal of the sea and the tawny brown of dampened sand, Cannes is awash with colour – and never more so than when the Lions Festival is in town. A kaleidoscope of gaudy flags and banners compete for attention, shouting out in lurid neon tones and overpowering the subtle, dirty pastels of the town houses and villas. 

Not everyone can enjoy this eye-searing riot. Around 8% of men in Northern Europe are colour blind (compared with just 0.5% of women); irregularities in the cones of their eyes limit the spectrum of colours they can perceive.  It can be a particular handicap if you happen to work in the visually-driven world of advertising. How apt, then, that one of the shortlisted entrants in the Cannes Lions Innovation Award was a set of sunglasses that helps colour blind people see the world in its full, polychromatic glory.

‘Colour for the Colour Blind’ is a project devised by FCB Chicago for Valspar paint – they sought out pioneering innovators EnChroma, who have developed a set of specs that uses sophisticated optical filters to help counteract the overlap of red and green receptor cones in the back of the eyeball. When FCB found EnChroma, the created an emotional connection between the technology and the Valspar brand by creating moving documentaries about people seeing the world in colour for the very first time.

When LBB heard about the project, we had to find out more. Was it a gimmick or could it truly help heighten the visual senses of millions of people? Jay Whitney, friend of LBB, official colour blind person and professional sceptic caught up with EnChroma CEO Tony Dykes to find out more and to give the sunglasses a test drive. 

Amazingly, the glasses did their job and Jay was left mesmerised by the beauty of Cannes’ flower beds, perceiving colours he had never seen before and finally ‘getting’ the difference between orange and green.

Find out how he got on in the video interview, and check out the Valspar work below. 

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Genres: Documentary

Categories: Home Appliances, Decorating

LBB Editorial, Thu, 02 Jul 2015 14:39:19 GMT