Opposition Effect and Fall Colors

November 07, 2011

Fall Opposition Effect (2)

Photographer: David Kiefer 
Summary Author: David Kiefer; Jim Foster

The photo above shows the opposition effect (lower center) against a background of striking fall foliage over eastern Tennessee. The apparent brightening of the landscape near the observer's shadow (at the antisolar point) is called the "opposition effect." It can be observed on just about all landscapes, but not on water, and results from the absence of shadows coming from the antisolar point. The shadow of the helicopter, used to take the photo, can be seen but the area surrounding this shadow is bright since the shadows of the trees can't be detected. Photo taken on October 15, 2011.

Photo details: Camera Maker: Canon; Camera Model: Canon PowerShot SD750; Focal Length: 5.8mm; Aperture: f/8.0; Exposure Time: 0.010 s (1/100); ISO equiv: 80; Exposure Bias: none; Metering Mode: Matrix; White Balance: Auto; Flash Fired: No (enforced); Orientation: Normal; Color Space: sRGB.