Always Wondered

How do we see color?

How do we see colors??

Lets start with a bit of general basic anatomy.  At the front of the eye is the pupil, it is like a window into the eye & its workings. It is the black area in the iris (the colored part of your eye) the gets larger with less light and smaller with bright light.  Behind the pupil & iris is the lens of the eye. The eye lens is what adjusts to make clear close up or far away images for the retina.  The retina is at the back of the eye- this is the light-sensitive inner lining of the back of the eye.  It produces an image to send to the optic nerve, which is like a highway/pathway to the brain.

The retina contains objects called “photoreceptors”.   There are two kinds of photoreceptors:



Rods are responsible for night vision because only a small bit of light can activate a rod. They do not help with our color vision, this is why we see everything in a black/grey at night.

The human eye has over 100 million rod cells!

Cones are responsible for color vision and require more light to function.  

There are three types of cones:




The rods are categorized mostly by the color they are most sensitive to.  There is some overlap in the rods and this is how the brain integrates this, making us able to see millions of colors.  The brain is what truly interprets the colors we are visualizing!


*There are approximately 6 million rods in the human eye!


The human body is so truly AMAZING!!!

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