This image is black and white. No, really.

Written by Andy Stout

Blender Animation Studio CC-BY-4.0A still from an excerpt of the Blender short ‘Spring’ with illusory colour overlay

Artist and developer Øyvind Kolås has made some extremely viral images of greyscale pictures overlaid by coloured grids that fool the eye into adding the missing colour.

Øyvind Kolås is an artist and developer and a prominent member of the GIMP open-source image editor project. He came up with this illusion of adding colour to greyscale images via superimposing a coloured grid over them as a result of working on improvements in the saturation operation of GIMP.

“This is not the exactly same as the way JPEG compression works, since in JPEG compression the lower resolution color signal is present for in every reconstructed pixel,” he writes. “In this illusion the reconstruction is happening in our eyes/mind - but it uses the same principle that Chroma Subsampling does, that luminance is a lot more important than the chroma for our visual perception.”

The original post is an interesting read as he goes on to show different examples of using different patterns to get the same effect, including dots, lines, and text.

And, given his position in GIMP development, if you want to experiment with the effect yourself it will be available in stock GIMP versions with the next GIMP-2.10 release as well as in any upcoming development snapshot for 3.0.

Here it is below working on a greyscale version of the Blender Open Movie ‘Spring’.

Tags: Post & VFX

Comments

Related Articles

27 July, 2020

LaCie 1big Dock SSD Pro and 1big Dock: Your storage media is now an important connectivity hub [Sponsored]

When is storage not simply storage? Today’s storage is now becoming a highly important connectivity hub to help speed up your workflows.

The LaCie...

Read Story

18 July, 2020

The Quantel name is legendary. This is its story, and ultimately what happened to it

The story of Quantel is a classic story of the rise and fall of a high-end manufacturer with a groundbreaking product based on very expensive,...

Read Story

16 July, 2020

Is colour grading essential? Perhaps we are too obsessed with it

The current consensus is that the best practice for shooting is to aim for the maximum options in post. So we shoot in log, or maybe RAW, to give us...

Read Story