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not blind to brights

From Habitat magazine - issue 11

Broadcaster Geoff Bryan loves bright shades… despite being partially colour blind.

Geoff Bryan
Geoff Bryan

TVNZ sports broadcaster and radio newsreader Geoff Bryan is, in fact, partially colour blind. Luckily, his wife Jan helps out not only with decorating colours but also with his wardrobe.

Tell us about being partially colour blind.

When I was about 14, one of my school books had diagrams with circles and dots, and numbers that we were supposed to be able to see. I thought it was a trick question because I could only see one number, and even then I got it wrong.

I can see all colours but not subtle shades of colour. It’s a standard boy colour-blind thing where you have the most trouble with greens, reds and oranges. Not long after Jan and I were married I was looking for a grey shirt until Jan pointed out that it was, in fact, bottle green.

What is your favourite colour and why?

Well, it’s not green! I enjoy full rich colours simply because I can see them. Deep red is a particular favourite.

What is your favourite decorating colour or combination of colours and why?

In 25 years of marriage, it’s not a decision I’ve been called upon to make! We have a couch with a large red and green pattern that’s a favourite. I like having bold colours around me because I can’t see the subtleties in, for example, different types of whites or pale neutrals. I suppose I could choose to play it safe by sticking to neutrals but that’s just not me.

Have those choices changed during the years? If so, what influenced that?

It’s hard enough to find the colours I like in the first place, I’m not going to rush out and change them!

Is there a colour you would never use in your own home?

Lime green wouldn’t be starter, and neither would bright orange.

What do you love or hate about the recent (but waning) trend for neutral colours, white-on-white?

I find neutral colours too stark. I enjoy the richness of colour, rather than what’s in fashion. My wife Jan has a theory that with the slower housing market more people will stay put and feel that they can put more personality and colour into their homes, and not just play it safe or keep it anonymous for resale.

What are your three favourite colours from Resene’s new The Range 2010?

I find it particularly difficult to see the subtleties in colours when they are sitting right next to each other, so the one thing I found very helpful was the grey viewing frames that come with the fandeck. When I isolate a colour, I can see it much more easily. My favourite colours off The Range 2010 are strong rich colours – Resene Pohutukawa, Resene Bullitt and Resene Gondwana.

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