The physic of the shadows on this image


I was doing random stuff on photoshop on [this screen from Breaking bad]( and I was wondering about the shadows : why all the shadows go to the right except for Mike’s (the left character) which goes to the left?

I quickly try to experiment with a flashlight and some objects but couldn’t find the right position of the light to get the same angles.

In: Physics

It isn’t an effect of the light source’s location (it is the sun) but rather due to the lens in the camera being used. The field of view of the lens is such that lines aren’t always parallel across the scene; we aren’t Picasso here.

Basically, all those shadows are parallel, and pointed away from the Sun. However, because of the effect of perspective, they all seem to point toward the [vanishing point]( on the horizon.

Looking at the Breaking Bad photo, it looks like the camera was facing directly away from the Sun. The shadows are all parallel, but due to perspective, they all point toward the vanishing point. Jesse, who’s furthest to the left, has the shadow pointing most toward the right. Hank, who’s just a little left of center, has a shadow pointing just a little to the right. Mike, on the right, has a shadow pointing to the left.

If you were to draw lines through the shadows, from feet to head, and continuing on, you’d see that they all meet at a single point on the horizon.

Alternatively, you could use this photo to prove that Breaking Bad wasn’t shot on Earth at all, but on a secret NASA sound stage on the Moon. Or something like that.