ColorTherapy in Film: Plein Soleil / Purple Noon

ColorTherapy in Film: Plein Soleil / Purple Noon

Mark Chamberlain
Jul 21, 2009

I have a few notes on the film Purple Noon, after a tip from a reader on my Samouraï post. I hadn't seen in it in years and much prefer it to the American counterpart, The Talented Mr. Ripley — both based on the novel by Patricia Highsmith.Flourish, and enter Alain Delon…

Although this is a French film, my interest here is the texture and colors of Italy along the Mediterranean coast. We'll let a slide show speak for itself. Note well the snappy suit on Mr. Delon in the second shot — I'd love to paint a stripe pattern like that some day, vermillion over Payne's grey lined with gold, for discriminating bachelors everywhere.

As I say I'm interested in how warm colors are used in the set design, especially what I think of as the Italian or Riviera pink of those exterior houses. Also, I wonder what kind of hand-painted wall-drawing we could make based on that arabesques wallpaper, or, better yet, out of that extremely elegant panel painting à la Pompeii. Lastly, I can't get enough of those steps hewn out of the side of the cliff. They must have been there for centuries.

- Mark Chamberlain, interior and decorative painter

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