The other day my friend and I were having an argument whether someone was wearing a shirt that was "red" or "deep orange". This made me think back to the concept of color constancy in our textbook. This concept seems intriguing to me, especially because I am very involved in art and I use the concept of arranging colors all the time. For a person to perceive a color to be something other than what it truly is due to the color of its surroundings astounds me. This picture from our book really surprised me and I honestly could hardly believe that it was true.
In this block of multicolored squares, it seems as if the color of the brown square on top is dramatically different than the yellow square in the middle of the shadowed side. For our eyes to receive color cues as exactly the same, but perceive them to be two different colors, is so interesting. The shading of the cube makes the colors exposed seem like radically different hues, but that is because we are unknowingly basing our perception of color around the surrounding colors, it seems to us that they are different. I find that almost "zoning out" and staring in the median distance between the two points of color and keeping both of them in my peripheral vision helps the truth become clearer. My eyes are playing tricks on me. To relate this concept back to my story of argument over a t-shirt color, my friend and I were both viewing this person in front of a building that was light blue and green. Because of the colors surrounding the person, the true color red was not observed and so our eyes perceived a sense of red, but not one of complete certainty. This shows how our eyes can definitely trick us when it comes to perceiving color. To finish my story, it turns out the person was actually wearing an orange shirt, and unfortunately, I was wrong in the argument. :p however, I did see a realistic view of how perceptions can differ from the external stimuli we are actually receiving.