Insights on design from a luminous carrot

In the latest Studio Snack podcast, Carrot, stick, my creative experiment gives me a way of tackling a picture problem…

Investigating whether carrots really do help us see in the dark, we had some creative playtime with luminous and fluorescent materials.

Beside myself with excitement that luminous thread even exists, I’ve drawn some carrots with a sewing machine. And that’s given me an unexpected discovery. My iPhone camera could see the reel of thread in the dark but it had trouble picking up the stitching (see top two images). My SLR camera and tripod did a better job (see bottom left image).

That made me think about a design dilemma. Increasingly, I’m sent phone pictures for materials that will appear in print. On screen, they look OK. But there’s not much detail in the image – and print is very unforgiving. So my experiment might provide an interesting way to explain that.

The best tool for picking up the luminosity? The human eye, it turns out. Or maybe I just eat a lot of carrots.

Listen to the episode here.