Published: October 2022
Many people are familiar with the term 'dazzle design', but what of its origins and objectives as a defensive practice at sea? And was it the only approach to the painted protection of merchant and naval vessels during the two world wars? David L. Williams examines the origins of maritime camouflage, how it was originally influenced by natural concealment as seen in living creatures and plants and was followed by the emergence of two fundamentally opposed schools of thought: reduced visibility and disruption to visual perception. Dazzle, Disruption & Concealment explores the objectives and design features of each of the various strategies advocated as forms of painted protection by looking at the scientific and artistic principles involved (the behaviour of light and the process of vision).
It considers their effectiveness as a means of reducing visibility or in disturbing the comprehension of crucial target attributes (ship's speed, distance and bearing). It also identifies the key individuals engaged in maritime camouflage development as well as the institutions set up to conduct in depth research into these practices.
Read the Nautilus Telegraph's review