It works in the same way Harris shutters enabled early color photography: a sequence of three photos is taken, each with a single color channel (red, green, or blue), and then the three photos are recombined to make a single color photo. Everywhere the scene is unchanged will look like a normal color photo, but where there is movement the three channels interfere with one another to produce “rainbowy” patterns of color.
In addition to the traditional "Harris shutter" effect, there are four other “filters”:
- indocybin (a black & white Harris shutter)
- psychedelia (using seven colors instead of three)
- delysid plus (additive seven color B&W version)
- delysid minus (inverted seven color B&W)
The B&W versions desaturate the photos first, to even out any colors that dominate (for example, forests, where green dominates). This makes more even rainbow colors everywhere there is motion, and grayscale (black & white) everywhere there is no change between photos.
The last three use seven colors instead of three: red, orange, yellow, green, cyan, blue, and violet.
The last filter inverts the photos first, essentially using the minimum values to combine the photos, rather than the maximum — this is useful for when a dark object moves across a bright background (like a plane moving across a bright blue sky).
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