How come some clouds have that classic cartoony look while others have an ‘interference pattern’ at higher altitudes?

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How come some clouds have that classic cartoony look while others have an ‘interference pattern’ at higher altitudes?

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Cartoons usually depict cumulus clouds. These are formed on sunny days when the heat of the sun warms the air on the ground causing it to collect at elevations in the terrain and rise up in a tall column. When this air gets high enough it becomes cold enough to form clouds. If there is wind at these altitudes the clouds may form long streaks which might also be what you are describing.

However you are likely describing Cirrus clouds which are formed by different types of winds forcing air upwards in certain patterns and forming clouds as they rise. These clouds are often caused by weather fronts which force the air in front or behind them to rise and therefore often signify a change in weather, usually to the worse.