Category Archives: Illusions

What would Wittgenstein say about that dress?


“What colour is that dress?” The question has been fascinating people all around the world, including Prof Barry C Smith of the University of London’s Institute of Philosophy. We all assume that we see what’s before our eyes, and if we have normal colour vision we should be able to tell what colour the dress is. And yet we’ve just discovered that the world of observers divides into two groups – those who see the dress as white and gold, … Continue reading

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Circling Balls Optical Illusion

circling wheels optical illusion

I have got a feeling this optical illusion might just blow your mind. We have put three clusters of circling balls above, but can you tell me how many of the three are going in the same direction? If you stare at the center yellow spot of the top left cluster they all seem to be going the same way, but not if you look at the other yellow spots. Let me know what you think in the comments. Via … Continue reading

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Which Line is Longer?

optical spy box optical illusion

  The Optical Spy box is split into the top third and the bottom two thirds. So which line is longer, the diagonal splitting the top third A-B or the diagonal splitting the bottom two thirds B-C?

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Animated Impossible Triangle

Here is a great little animation made by our friends over at optical spy

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You wont believe this Optical Illusion!

rubicks cube optical illusion

This optical illusion by is of the famous Rubics Cube. Can you spot the illusion? Well it is difficult to notice, but the middle squares on each side are actually all the same color. Wow! If you don’t believe it, click on the picture and you will see.

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Checker-board Optical Illusion

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Hat Trick

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Holbein’s Skull

The Ambassadors (1533) is a painting by Hans Holbein the Younger in the National Gallery, London. As well as being a double portrait, the painting contains a still life of several meticulously rendered objects, the meaning of which is the cause of much debate. It is also a much-cited example of anamorphosis in painting. The most notable and famous of Holbein’s symbols in the work, however, is the distorted skull which is placed in the bottom center of the composition. The skull, rendered in anamorphic perspective, another invention of the Early Renaissance, is … Continue reading

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Cognitive Illusions

The two squares with the Optical Spy logo in are the same color! Click on the picture Illusion is a step away from reality and optical illusions are those that relate images we see to others that we visualize, perceive, or relate to. Although there are three major types of optical illusions, cognitive illusions remain the most researched amongst them all. So what are cognitive illusions? Cognitive Illusions – In life, we gain awareness and consciousness about many different subjects, changing … Continue reading

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The Road Where Cars Roll Uphill

There is a road in Scotland where bicyclists have to pedal hard to ride downhill… but then coast uphill. Why?

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Mind Your Step

Mind your step is a street illusion at Sergels torg in Stockholm. It is created by photographer Erik Johansson and this video summarize the first three days. Hey, it was filmed in full-HD, so why not watch it in full screen mode.

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Spinning Illusion

Only one of these disks is actually spinning, can you see which one? Click here to reveal answer

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Can you name the paintings and the artists?


Can you name the paintings and the artists? – Click on the picture to reveal the answers.

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The McGurk effect

The McGurk effect is a compelling demonstration of how we all use visual speech information. The effect shows that we can’t help but integrate visual speech into what we ‘hear’.

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Le Blanc-Seing – Rene Magritte

Today we post a beautiful picture suggested to us by Alan Mason an artist and writer from Stony Stratford in Buckinghamshire, England. It is Rene Magritte‘s famous painting ‘Le Blanc-Seing’ (literal translation: “The Blank Signature”) which roughly translates as “free hand” or “free rein”. Alan also tells us Magritte was recorded as saying that the purpose of art was to puzzle and mystify people, which resonates well with us here at Optical Spy. Initially, the painting appears to be an ordinary painting … Continue reading

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How to make an illusion ad

This new advertisement by Honda is brilliant. Take a look here. Now see how it was made. – Deskarati

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Hidden Faces

how many faces

There are seven hidden faces in the picture above, can you find them? Pop over to Optical Spy to see the answers – opticalspy

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A Portrait of Charles Darwin


A stunning portrait of Charles Darwin by David Revoy that pays homage to Darwin’s contributions to evolutionary theory, created using different animal and plant species. Via opticalspy

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Moving Patterns Illusion

moving pattern

Here’s a nice moving pattern illusion from that we thought you might like.  

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Thanks to Stephen Herbert for this interesting post We all know what a zoetrope is. One of those “cookie tins on a stick”, with slots in the sides, that show a repeating cartoon of a second or so, from a strip of drawings. Dates from way back – 1860s, maybe earlier – and still found in some toy stores. All true, but when we look closely at what a zoetrope is and does, things start to get a little weird … Continue reading

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