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Atmospheric optics in art

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Abstract

A brief historical overview of the atmospheric optical phenomena that appear in works of fine art is presented. It is shown that artists have recorded many features of the color and brightness of the sky and clouds, aerial perspective and visibility effects, and phenomena, including crepuscular rays, rainbows, halos, and coronas. Artistic biases resulting from prevailing styles and societal influences are noted. Attention is drawn to a number of phenomena recorded by artists that have not yet been explained or modeled.

© 1991 Optical Society of America

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