POSSIBLE MEANING OF BLUE IN VERMEER’S WOMAN IN BLUE READING A LETTER

In my final project for the English for specific purposes course I have to deal with the picture of Vermeer’s picture titled. We can realize after looking at this picture for a while that blue is the main colour in the picture for it is not just the woman’s dress which is blue but also the chairs in the picture. Through using this colour it gives the impression that the woman is feeling and reading something sad.

In the English language, blue may refer to the feeling of sadness. “He was feeling blue”. This is because blue was related to rain, or storms, and in Greek mythology, the god Zeus would make rain when he was sad (crying), and a storm when he was angry. It might be a coincidence but I think Vermeer knew what he was doing and was really wise in the use of the proper colours for its pictures, apart from being an artists painting the forms, of course.

The only two colours apart from blue in this picture are black, which corresponds to the table and gold, which is the colour of the wall behind the woman and the map hanging on it. Curiously enough, blue is thought to be cognate with blond and black through the Germanic word.

Was Vermeer such a genius, or is it a coincidence? We’ll never know.