How are Shadows Formed

A shadow is formed when an opaque object blocks the travel of light on a second object. Light travels in straight lines and any barrier along its path averts the rays striking the barrier.This forms a region of darkness, shaped like the surface of the object obstructing the light.

A shadow takes up all the space behind the object with light before it. Its cross-section is a two-dimensional outline of the obstructing object.

The shadow is smaller if the angle between an object and the path of light is nearer to 90°. It is longer if the angle between the surface and the path of light is smaller. If the obstructing object is closer to the starting point of light, the shadow is larger. If the light source is wider, the shadow appears blurred. There are additional deformations if the light is bent.

The length and size of shadows differ according to the time of the day since  the sun’s tangent varies throughout the day. The notion that shadows grow over the day is not true. In fact, they decrease in length as time passes through the day.

When there are multiple sources of light, multiple shadows can occur. They can have darker overlapping sections or mixed colors. Shadows converge at the site of touch, such as an individual touching a surface, the floor, or a pole on the surface.

Colored shadows are formed because light colors or brightened shadows depend on the complementary color of the light obstructed to produce the shadow. They are also formed when separate sources of light produce white light. The complement of white light is green while the complement of green light is red.

If there is no white light, the color produced in shadows is the complementary color to the obstructed lights for blue light, red shadows, and vice versa, whie purple, yellow, and red for green lights.

The shadow produced by a moving object will create an image with dimensions growing relatively quicker than the object’s own length of movement. However, it is true that the growing movement and size in settings of the source of light and the object of interference are closer to each other.