MARTYN F. CHILLMAID / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARTYN F. CHILLMAID / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
A cyan coloured toy car under white light (bottom left) and yellow light (top right). Human eyes respond to the colour of light reflected from a surface. White light contains a full mix of red, green and blue. A cyan car appears cyan under white light as cyan paint absorbs red and reflects a mix of blue and green light, which appears cyan to the human eye. Yellow light is a mix of red and green and lacks the blue of white light. As yellow light does not contain any blue, and the cyan paint absorbs red light, the only colour it can reflect from yellow light is green. Therefore the car appears green under yellow light.
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