No-blue blues

Image by GLady from Pixabay

For a while during the pandemic, the color blue was in short supply. It may still be a slight issue going forward, too:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/museums/blue-paint-shortage-art/2021/12/21/486c667c-5df9-11ec-ae5b-5002292337c7_story.html

Why was there less blue when COVID infections were high? One reason is the oxygen used to make it was needed in various countries (like India) for patients who were struggling to breathe.

Would you give up a new blue shirt so that someone somewhere could get air?

Here’s more about how blue pigment is made – traditionally made from the mineral lapis lazuli (used in ancient Egyptian and Roman paintings), which has become rarer over time. In fact, we do use the word blue to mean rare: the blue rose, the blue moon.

Now blue is more common, made synthetically from copper, calcium, and silicon, but they must be combined with oxygen ions:
https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/chemistry/blue-pigment

But without that oxygen, when it’s needed elsewhere, what can we do?

Instead, perhaps we can support natural pigments.

Some DIY natural pigments: https://urbannaturale.com/diy-natural-pigments-make-home/
As you can see, the only source of natural blue among plants is blueberries, or traditional indigo, also prized in the past.

We say "blue" to mean depressed or sad, but in fact, blue makes us feel calm, and is often even used to advertise a sense of relaxation in businesses, reduce crime, and more. (Read more about the effects of blue here).

What does blue mean to you? What emotions and images does it evoke? Could you live without blue items in your home?

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