TECH

Your Eyes Are Telling You These Strawberries Are Red, They're Wrong

What is this sorcery!?

01/03/2017 12:22 GMT | Updated 02/03/2017 08:44 GMT

Now try to remain calm but what we’re about to tell you is a bit mind-blowing.

The image that appears below this text appears red doesn’t it. It looks like a nice plate of red strawberries, albeit through some completely over the top Instagram filter.

Well the truth is it’s not red. Not even close to red. What you’re looking at is a picture containing almost exclusively grey pixels.

That’s right, there’s not a single red pixel in that image.

The person you can thank (or hate) for this mind-bending optical illusion is Akiyoshi Kitaoka, a man who has spent much of his academic life infuriating us with some truly astonishing illusions.

This particular effect is called colour constancy. It’s essentially our brain’s course correcting what it assumes to be some red strawberries being influenced by another light source. 

So an example would be seeing an object under an entirely blue sky or seeing it under one that’s pure red.

What happens then is your brain tries to correct the light source that’s being used and reproduce the colours that it knows are usually associated with that object.

It’s pretty mind-blowing stuff but if you want to be really impressed then check out some of these: