Use a contrasting color. Want to punch up a space in an unexpected, contemporary way? Paint the ceiling a color that contrasts with the walls, such as this yellow against the purple. The ceiling becomes its own element and the space takes on a new dimension.
Don’t feel like you have to follow the color wheel exactly when taking this approach. (For example, red walls with a green ceiling may feel too holiday-ish for a year-round look.) Simply search for colors that play well off each other and stand on their own when paired.