Optics, Art, and You.

  Today in class we were discussing linear perspective and the illusion of dimensionality. Which caused me to think about it. Isn’t everything we are seeing an illusion? I suppose that statement requires a bit of explanation or else it’ll sound a bit existential.

  The world around us is 3 dimensional, our vision is light based. It takes light so little time to make it between any visible distance and us that it is, for all intents and purposes, instant. This means that everything that reaches our eye reaches it at the exact same moment, which would make it all a flat scene.

  That means that we take a 3 dimensional image, it hits our eye as a 2 dimensional image, and we then convert it in our brain to a 3 dimensional image again. It is the techniques that our brain uses to do this that are converted into art ‘tricks’. Essentially we have figured out the various components that fashion together a cohesive three dimensional image our of 2 dimensional data. So in fact everything that we are ‘seeing’ is an illusion, because everything we are receiving is 2 dimensional.

  However in the case of this illusion what we see ends up being what we get. So I suppose its akin to mistaking someone for someone you thought you knew and then realizing that your mistake was believing you had made a mistake.

  Hope that blows your mind.

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