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Why are shadows distorted?

If two separate objects cast shadows using sunlight, one of the shadows (I think it’s the one furthest from the light source) distorts as they (the shadows) are brought nearer to each other. This may well have something to do with the penumbras involved but can it be explained in wave or particle terms. Does this tell us something about the nature of light?
Peter O’Brien from South Yorkshire (Age: 55+)

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