I don't know why, but on our recent road trip I started noticing fire hydrants. I realized that I have a mental image of what a fire hydrant looks like – it's red and shaped like a fire hydrant! This one that I saw in St. Louis has the right shape but the color is wrong.
In Chicago the color is right (red) but the shape is wrong.
The more places we visited, the more hydrants I noticed. I must not be alone in this. At least one artist in Burlington, VT, pays attention to hydrants too.
In NYC this hydrant wore basic black with silver accents.
This hydrant on the Johns Hopkins campus in Baltimore could use some paint – or ivy.
Last week in Knoxville I walked past this cheerful one every day. There was another one nearby that had a green top!
I tell people in my color lecture that it's really important to walk around with your eyes open and to pay attention to what you see. I pay attention to colors and color combinations, shapes, and textures that catch my eye.
What did I learn from these hydrants? Once I realized that all hydrants do not match the image that I have of them in my head, I saw them better. Using an unexpected color for an object in an applique quilt would make it more noticeable.