It is no exaggeration that the entire planet is anxious to close 2020 and are looking with optimistic anticipation toward 2021. It is as if there is a light peaking into the end of a long, dark tunnel. It is with this vision, that Pantone Color Institute has named the 2021 Pantone Color of the Year. 

In fact, they have named two colors – PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating – which is a sunny shade of yellow. 

Lauren Pressman, Pantone Color Institute’s Vice-President told the New York Times, “No one color could get across the meaning of the moment.” In addition to the light at the end of a tunnel, Pressman added that the color combination also illuminated the feelings of “emotional support and hope.”

2021 Pantone Color of the Year Conveys Fortitude and Happiness

Pantone Color of the Year shadow girl in yellow wall web

Photo courtesy of Pantone

The color combination could be the ideal representation of the transition from 2020 to 2021. The gray represents the light granite color of highway asphalt, and the yellow represents the centerline of the highway that carries us from difficulty toward happier times.

Or it can be an even more optimistic daydream with the gray reminiscent of the sand of a pristine beach and yellow is the rising sun as it comes up over the horizon. 

The individual colors come together and exude feelings of strength (gray) combined with joy and optimism (yellow). 

Pantone’s Universal Color Language

Setting the color standards for more than 10 million designers and producers, Pantone defines color consistency for brands, fashion, and product design. Their color matching system has been around since 1963 and provides guidelines for color matching in the printing industry.

Pantone Color of the Year Color Samples web

The Pantone Color of the Year was established in 2000 and forecasts trends in art, fashion, and print. The Pantone Color Institute provides color consultation and studies color trends in fashion, marketing, and more to decide on each year’s Color of the Year. 

At Artisan Colour, we live and love color, and we fully appreciate the inspired decision behind 2021 Pantone color of the year to combine two colors as one to represent our current world. We, like everyone, have had challenges, yet we have witnessed exceptional strength and resilience in our staff and clients. It gives us hope that there are better days ahead. 

Keep us in mind for your next print project. Visit our Printing and Graphic Services to see what we can do for you. For inquiries, please call Local: (602) 806-8699, Toll-Free: (877) 948-0098 or email