Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Clouds: Growth and Dispersion

Clouds have a life cycle. They grow and they decay. We don’t really perceive the process because it happens so slowly.

If you speed up the action, you can see the growth side of the equation as the clouds emerge in tight, convex cells.

Watch the top of the frame, and you can also see the dispersion. Clouds break into fragments, called “fractus” clouds, and then melt into the sky. Because the water vapor is less dense, fractus clouds are never as bright white as the growth cells.

Artist James Perry Wilson included both phases of a cloud’s life in this detail of a painted diorama backdrop at the Museum of Natural History in New York.
Fractus clouds on Wikipedia
Earlier GJ Posts: “Capturing a Cumulus”
"James Perry Wilson's Dioramas"

1 comment:

My Pen Name said...

between your posts about Wilson, Windows of Nature- a book about the making of the AMNH diaramas, and a new interest in animal anatomy - going to the AMNH is whole new experience- i have been going there over 30 years and it literally feels like I am seeing if for the first time - i never really 'looked' at perry's and other artists work ...
I wish they'd display those articulated horse skeletons- they are supposed to be art and science...