The purpose of this study was to explore the infants' ability to perceive 3D shape from pictorial depth cues. While several previous studies showed that infants discriminate between displays which differ in pictorial information for depth and can use this information to direct reaching, it is not clear that infants form a common representation of an object's shape from different pictorial depth cues. To clarify the infants' ability for pictorial depth cues, we employed a "transfer-across-depth-cues" method with four-to-five-month-old and six-to-seven-month-old infants. Using this method, we examined the transfer between two pictorial depth cues: shading and surface contours. Infants were habituated to a 3D shape specified by one cue and were then presented with the same shape and a novel shape, both specified by the other depth cue. In this situation the familiar shape could be detected only if one perceived the 3D shape from the pictorial depth cues. Our results indicated that older infants showed a significant novelty preference while the younger group did not. We found that, at least by six-to-seven-months old, infants develop a common representation over different pictorial depth cues.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by JST-PRESTO, Grants-in-Aid for scientific research ( 21243041 , 20539004 ) from JSPS , and the Center for Cognitive Sciences and the Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota. We thank Yuko Hibi, Megumi Kobayashi, Emi Nakato, Yumiko Otsuka, Midori Takashima, Yuka Yamazaki, and Jiale Yang for their assistance with data collection and Susan Phipps-Yonas for help in editing the paper.
- Depth perception
- Pictorial depth cues
- Surface contours