Reflection of Trees Off Water

The image of the trees that can be seen in the water is created by reflection of light. Reflection occurs when light “bounces” off an object. In this photograph, light from the sun hits the trees. The trees absorb all the colour wavelengths of light except those that combine to form the colour brown, which reflects in all directions. A portion of the reflected light creates an image of the trees on the water. The water then reflects some of the light it receives towards the viewer’s eyes at the same angle at which it received the light. The light that is not reflected is transmitted to the bottom of the water. This is why the image of the trees on the water appears less bright than the actual trees. However, since the water’s surface is still, an accurate image of the trees is reflected into the viewer’s eyes. If the water was rippled, the image of the trees would be distorted due to irregular reflections.

Larisa Vartija
Centre Dufferin District H.S., Ontario
Category 1 (High School/CEGEP) 2nd prize

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