Semantic colour system

What is a semantic colour system?

A semantic colour system is a framework that assigns meaning to colours. In a semantic colour system, a colour's name reflects its intended purpose (eg. Background Base, Text Title) or human interpretation of the colour (eg. Alert Text).

Benefits of a semantic colour system

Semantic colours create a common language for discussing and referencing colours. Which makes communication more efficient and reduces misunderstanding. While ensuring a shared understanding of the intended colour usage.

When a shared understanding of the intended colour usage exists. Visual inconsistencies are less likely to occur in a product. Because everyone is using a colour for the same purpose.

Working with colours with associated meanings reduces decision making time. Allowing a designer to focus on optimising the user experience. Instead of deliberating between countless shades of grey.

Semantic colour systems simplify colour management and scalability. Change individual colours values, without needing to create a new colour system.