Are we looking cool?
Or just trying to get yourselves killed?
British Artist and naval officer Norman Wilkinson, returning from the disastrous Gallipoli campaign in 1915, realized that painting ships a single color made them stand out against the sea. This led to his crucial realization of the need for a different strategy. Wilkinson’s solution was simple: use bright, contrasting diagonal stripes and bold colors to confuse U-boat captains and hinder their ability to determine target size, direction, and speed. His presentation to the Royal Navy sparked the Razzle Dazzle Camouflage movement, which proved effective throughout World War I. However, with the advent of radar, the science of visual deception and Razzle Dazzle Camouflage fell out of use. For a detailed exploration of its history, here is a comprehensive resource.
Bye-Bye Razzle Dazzle…
Well, not exactly… Razzle Dazzle Camouflage can still be found abundantly on today’s streets, highways, and back-roads. Moreover, it’s worth highlighting that, in fact, you might even find yourself piloting a remarkable Razzle Dazzle Camouflage Eye Candy Kamikaze wonder. Those nifty bright colors would be great if the rest of the world was a white backdrop. As we all know the road environment is a cluttered and messy place. Picture your bike as the model boat in the above photo of Norman Wilkinson and the city street as in the photo behind him. Get the idea?
Safety is job one.
Well actually it is a lot more than Job one.
It covers every aspect of our lives… From how much sleep and fluids we get, our emotional state and how we train our eyes… see the science of sight. Our safety relies on recognizing these factors, including how eye-catching paint schemes can conceal us from other travelers. Organizations, such as the Motorcycle Safety Institute, are trying to help us by honing our rider skills and reminding the public to be alert to the presence of motorcyclist. These, and other efforts to improve our safety are good. But ultimately, we must take responsibility to improve our riding skills and understand ourselves and our environment. After all, constant training for job one is our best option.