Friday, 27 February 2015

A Second One For Friday!

I apologize in advance, because half the freaking universe is writing about this and you are free to ignore mine, but if you enjoy my kooky way of looking at things, maybe this will be worth it.

So this dress.......

Millions saw BLUE and BLACK
Millions saw WHITE and GOLD

Some of us saw BLUE and GOLD. We are the minority therefore we are the most interesting group. Here's why.

The dress was in fact BLUE and BLACK.

I had a hard time believing that until I saw new photos. I had played around with colour matching and come up with this:

I was aware, obviously, that photos show colours strangely sometimes. In my own experience, low light often results in a blue tint to white, so I found that easy to explain.

The science of why this photo turned out the way it did has been beautifully explained here:

So in that much, this is a win for science.

OK, so that's all settled.

No, it isn't.

The options were Blue and Black, or White and Gold. But I saw Blue and Gold. I then determined this was not the case. I decided that what I SAW was wrong, and that it must be white and gold, because I could not see black no matter how I tried.

Some of this is because of my monitor. My husband says it looks different on his tablet and phone. The colour is more washed out on some screens.

We are VERY bad at comparing shades:

But that is just contrast and hue. How did we get this third, "mixed" answer?

I have looked at the people who shared the minority view, and we all have something in common. We are all highly creative. Artists, crafters, cooks, photographers etc. That's not to say others who saw the majority two are NOT creative, you understand (I have to stress that or I'll be misunderstood).

I think those of us who saw blue and gold (even if we knew it was not right) did so because we actually analyze pictures, rather than just see them.

Some time ago I sent a message to one of my customers explaining that the angel charms she had ordered were out of stock. I suggested a similar charm.

Here are photos of both charms.

The customer could not see the difference.

We are really bad at comparisons.

Colour, size, shape..........

I can AGONIZE over my creations to ensure what I provide is what is pictured. I once spent 4 hours trying to get  some blue beads the right shade of blue in the photo. Meanwhile gold looks black to millions of people and two angels look the same.

Is this a problem, or is it just "meh".

A few people don't care what colour the effing dress is, and are already angry that others are giving it any time at all. But I'm utterly fascinated that our eyes deceive us, because I can't but help think of all the implications of that. It's just how I roll.

What we see, and what we extrapolate from that can be automatic. Babies are pre-wired to recognize faces, and this is so powerful that we see faces in clouds and stains, and we have developed technology that allows cameras to recognize faces too.

There is a phenomenon called pareidolia, which is so fascinating you MUST look it up if you aren't familiar with it:

This is behind many "supernatural" sightings, and I found a wonderful example on Facebook:

I don't know how much of this cloud formation was original, but clearly it has been photoshopped.

Responses to the picture included "The Holy Spirit watching over us". Others think it's demonic.

(Rolls eyes)

You see what you want to see. I see an altered picture, but if it was to be a God, surely it would be the Flying Spaghetti Monster?

I've seen a similar shape in the Northern Lights. I have a feeling that it could be a common phenomena, and may have been the origin of the Thunderbird.

I have also seen pansies smiling at me. Just, so you know how seriously I take this stuff. I was very young when I realised that what we see is not reliable.

So, our eyes deceive us, but that's not the fun part. The fun part is why we let them, or don't realise it.

We have all these preconceptions. If we expect something, that goes into what we see. If something is familiar, that goes into the mix. This is why some see a glass half empty, right?

But most of all some people see what's there, most of the time, at least, while others see what they want/expect/imagine far more.

In my considered opinion this is not purely an intellectual or creative ability thing. It's something separate, which I don't have a name for, and I hope you do. It fascinates me more than anything I can think of.

It's more about wants and needs and experience and "issues". This is deep psychology, and I simply don't know enough about it to put my finger on it.

It could be related to another phenomenon that I've spoken about before - people who "enjoy" otherwise HORRIBLE smells because it reminds them of a person they loved or a happy memory. It could be a right brain, left brain thing. It could be cultural, in many cases.

There is an advantage to this difference between what we see and what our brains make of it. We can enjoy a puppet act without constantly thinking "it's a man's hand inside". We can enjoy Monet. We can watch black and white films (I actually struggle with that, another example perhaps that I'm a bit odd). We can watch TV. TV is not a picture. It's a dot that moves across the screen in rows, VERY fast. We can even forgive highly pixelated image, look at the popularity of Minecraft (I find it unbearable, oh dear, there's me being different again).

And I saw blue and gold. I'm always in the minority. I'm a pain in the arse quite frankly. I really annoy people with my sideways look at the world sometimes you know.

I almost drove my art teacher to drink. On one occasion she had us painting a white door, and I painted it in various shades of grey depending on shadow. (See shadow illusion above). She tried to tell me it had other colours in it, and I said it didn't. She tried to explain this to me at length, in various ways, until she was so frustrated she stormed out of the room. I have always been artistic but I failed art because of my attitude. Let that be a lesson to you.

I argue about art all the time. One shouldn't. It's a very personal thing.

But you remember the little boy who said the emperor was naked? Well, that.

OK, so all that said, I do not believe my way of thinking or seeing things is right, and instead of insisting I'm right, I chose to find the entire thing interesting. But I do think I'm right in making that choice.

I believe very much in thinking outside the box, even if it makes you unpopular. It's about honesty and integrity and stuff like that. And I don't mind being wrong, because that just means I learned something new - and that's awesome. That's the best.

Conclusion. I'm quite mad, but also, if your photo shows black as gold, it's a really crappy photo. And if you saw white, see a doctor.

1 comment:

  1. I stopped reading after the bit about the circles, because even allowing for the optical illusion I found it hard to believe they were the same size. Measured them by putting a measuring tape up against the screen. One is about a centimeter and a half in diameter, the other 2.