I also like slightly darker than 18% gray overall. Don't go with color. I did find that as I utilized my larger LCD monitor more than my old CRT, I needed to put a bit of extra light on the wall behind the LCD. Otherwise it always appeared too bright when I looked from CRT to it.
Hmmm! Supposedly scientific studies were conducted by the Rusian/Soviet military to find the best colour for a restful and relaxing environment, particularly fighter aircraft cockpits, and concluded the bluey-green shade they use as the best choice (see the extract below). Hospital interior walls in many countries also use similar colour(s) as being restful and calming - I suppose that also depends on why you are in the hospital.
I am not sure it helps with creativity - perhaps a Russian military pilot could help with that issue. However, as between 4 to 10% of males, depending on ethnic grouping, suffer from some form of colour blindness that colour may be irrelevant. I would suggest a simple test of looking around to see what colours work with you specifically and experimenting, small scale, to find your best colours to meet the criteria you state. Many theories may be postulated, but remember that not everyone is the same.
As some of us, at times, are flying by the seat of our pants when video editing perhaps the bluey-green will suit best.
'The color subconsciously relaxes and reduces stress in combat situations (in theory at least), where the pilot has to focus fully on his / her task. However, some MiG pilots say that green is also relaxing at night, since it does not stand out very much, yet you can see its outlines and instrument positions with ease (though that is again a question of preference). Also, in some MiG strands, the instruments do not have lights but are coated in a solution that shines nicely when illuminated with ultraviolet light, so they (the pilots) say that the combination of colors is not distracting or disturbing, while providing very good visibility.'
N.B. this is a contribution with serious comment, though also tongue-in-cheek, so don't get too upset if you disagree with my comments.
Currently going through the learning curve of colour correction and grading (am reading books on the subject !).
They suggest a 18% gray (or a bit darker) area just behind the grading monitor. Big enough to almost cover your field of view. The rest of the room will be dark so the wall colours behind and around you are not so important (its dark right).
Next, get some daylight 6000k bulbs behind the viewing monitor to gently illuminate the gray area behind the monitor but not directly viewable to you but producing a gradient light on behind the monitor.
What i used was a gray linen thin bed sheet and simply pinned it to the wall. Once the daylight bulbs illuminate it (not overly bright) its works perfectly. And with a properly calibrated monitor, it works great for colour correction and grading.
None of this is really necessary for just editing (cuts / trans / editing decisions etc), this is all for CC and grading situations.
Hope this helps.
Thanks everyone for the helpful ideas. Thankfully I have to do very little color grading as I know how to properly white balance. I'll probably do the 18% grey on the wall that the editing desk faces and maybe a dark color for the rest of the room. Yes I do keep the room dark. I don't think I want to paint the whole room grey as I don't want to get the feeling I'm in a battleship.
Neutral gray is best for a color correction suite. If you are not worried to much about color correction then the next goals are to aim for an even lighting environment around 5,000K color temperature and roughly 55 Lux hitting your screen. When looking for lighting look for the highest color rendering index (CRI) you can find.
Here is a decent summary: www.kevinmillsphoto.com/2008/10/lighting-your-workspace/