Tam Nguyen Photography

New York Beauty and Fashion Photographer

Incredible Shade Illusion by Brusspup

Posted on August 17, 2011 in Photography

Incredible Shade Illusion by Brusspup

Here’s a mind-bending video in which someone created the famous checker shadow illusion in real life. The optical illusion takes advantage of the way our brains process lighting and shadows.

This illusion has been around for a long time but always in the form of an image. The illusion works because of the “shadow” that falls on the checkerboard. Let’s think of the square that the shadow falls on. Now picture that the shadow doesnt exist, you would see a light colored square surrounded by the dark colored squares. But when the shadow falls on top of that light colored square, the shadow causes the shade to become darker but it also causes the surrounding darker squares to become darker. So within the shadow region the brightness and darkness of the squares are still relative to one another. But they are no longer relative to the squares that lie outside of the shadow.

So if you were able to pick up the middle square and move it to one of the outside dark squares, they would be 2 different shades, But the trick is ..that when you move the square you are moving it WITH the shadow still printed on the square. So now you’ve moved it out of its relative area, outside of the shadow region (but with the shadow still printed on the square) ..to the area where it’s the same shade as the “dark” square.

The squares labeled A and B are exactly the same color (use the color-dropper tool in Photoshop if you don’t believe it). A rectangle of the same color has been drawn connecting the two areas of the image. You can use a color picker tool to verify.

So, make sure to not entirely trust your eyes when you’re shooting or looking at the tiny LCD on your camera.

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