The Material Inversion Effect

– Juno Kim and Phillip J Marlow: “The Material Inversion Effect”. University of New South Wales, UNSW Sydney and Sydney University. Australia

Author description: In this effect, we show that the same image can appear to depict an object constructed from either an opaque shiny material (like polished metal) or a transparent refractive material (like solid glass). The appearance of glass or metal depends on whether the image is presented upright or inverted. This illusion reveals that our brain visually infers the material properties of objects from images using knowledge about how prevailing illumination interacts with the optics underlying refractive and reflective materials.

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