Sunday, December 19, 2004

A web of twigs? 

Fred over at Fragments has a post that sent me rummaging through the photo store and bookshelves – the former to find this illustration of an unusual optical phenomenon…

…and the latter to dig out a book entitled “The nature of light and color in the open air” by M. Minnaert. The English translation I have is dated 1954; the original text is earlier even than that. But I don’t suppose the laws of optics have changed much in the last half-century.

The picture wasn't shot looking through a spider's web, just an ordinary tree under these peculiar lighting conditions. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to find any explanation of the phenomenon in the book yet. I’ll let you know, Fred, if I find one.

The credit for the photo, incidentally, goes to P, one of my sons. Here's the uncropped shot to see the full context, taken on the descent from Ben Nevis a couple of years back:

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