Colored Shadows and Retinex Vision

Susan Houde-Walter

When the sun is low at the end of a clear winter day, the long shadows of trees against the snow look violet-blue in comparison to the gold sunlight. As sunset progresses and the sunlight becomes redder, the shadows may look green. A controlled experiment will show that, in general, shadows of objects that are illuminated in colored light will be the complementary colors in the presence of a white light background illumination.

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Publish Date: 01 May 1992

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