Colors can be very powerful in data visualizations. Colors have meanings, they bring out emotions and feelings and have to be chosen carefully when planning a design. Some time ago I talked about using red to signal danger. I created this line chart showing the drastic decline of African elephants population since the beginning of 20th century.
Recently I explored the difference between using light and dark backgound for visualizations of data.
My personal prefernce is to always use light background unless there is a specific reason to use a certain color. If dark colors are used like navy or black I associate it with night time. So if the data relates to eveings and nights it will make sense to put dark color as a background.
To visualize this I created two maps of New York City, one with the most popular coffee shops and one with the most popular night clubs.
For the most popular coffee shops I used a light color to indicate day time and dar brown color with coffee cup icon to show the locations of the coffee shops.
For the most popular night clubs I used dark color to indicate evening and neon green color with a cocktail glass icon to show the locations of the night clubs.
Using dark color on a map can be very powerful if you are showing any night time information related to specific locations. Examples could be night flight itineraries or night train routes, dangerous places at night for specific locations, etc.