This artist's 3D painting will blow your mind

"For great art, you have to perceive the object, the situation, and watch the everyday lighting," 3D painter Stefan Pabst told Booooooom. "You have to see something like you did the very first time you saw it, with a complete open mind, like a child."

More on Pabst's Facebook page.

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If you can see the baby in this photo you may be more prone to hallucinations or psychosis


Can you spot the baby in this image? Researchers at the Universities of Cardiff and Cambridge found that volunteers who showed early signs of psychosis were much better at recognizing the baby than a group of people who did not have psychosis.

Can't see the baby? Good for you! See the original photo.


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Watch: How to make ten cool optical illusions


Psychology professor Richard Wiseman of Quirkology shows how to make ten optical illusions. The one with the straw is a good magic trick! Download the floating dice template here. Read the rest

Mephisto Spiral optical illusion

"The Mephisto Spiral is a neat toy that gives the illusion that you can continuously pull the two spiral halves apart."

It looks like 2 interlocking wire spirals. In your hands, the two spirals seem to wind together or wind apart, completely effortlessly. However when you hand the Mephisto Spiral over to someone else, they find that they cannot replicate the action – the two wire spirals are completely rigid.

Alternatively, by simply moving your hands in one direction, you can make the two spirals appear to unwind, yet however many times you repeat the action, the two spirals never come apart.

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How to trick your brain with M&Ms

Researchers at Barrow Neurological Institute made a Lego checkerboard and placed white and purple M&Ms on the squares in a way that makes the board appear to bulge.

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Hidden faces in optical illusion paintings

Artist Oleg Shuplyak arranges the figures and objects in his paintings to reveal the faces of famous people such as Salvador Dali and Charles Darwin. Read the rest

Anamorphic illusion of Lego Minifigs

Those Minifigures are actually 2D anamorphic paintings flat on the ground created by the amazing Leon Keer at Legoland Deutschland. See the reality below. Read the rest

Amazing optical illusion and Spirograph

Phil "Bad Astronomy" Plait deconstructs Brusspup's "Crazy Circle Illusion" and ties it to the wonderful classic art/science/toy Spirograph. Read the rest

Illusion of the Year winners

This is the winner of the "2014 Best Illusion of the Year Contest;" below is a description and video of the second and third prize winners.


Christopher D. Blair, Gideon P. Caplovitz, and Ryan E.B. Mruczek University of Nevada Reno, USA, USA The Dynamic Ebbinghaus takes a classic, static size illusion and transforms it into a dynamic, moving display. A central circle, which stays the same size, appears to change size when it is surrounded by a set of circles that grow and shrink over time. Interestingly, this effect is relatively weak when looking directly at a stationary central circle. But if you look away from the central circle or move your eyes, or if the entire stimulus move across the screen, then the illusory effect is surprisingly strong -- at least twice as large as the classic, static Ebbinghaus illusion.


Mark Vergeer, Stuart Anstis, and Rob van Lier University of Leuven, UC San Diego, Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands

In this visual illusion one colored image can lead to completely different color impressions. The impression depend on the grey scale transparent image that is presented on top of the colored image. The 2 colored images on the left and the right are exactly the same, constructed from a combination of the color profile of the forrest picture and the Manhattan skyline picture. The grey scale image that is presented on top of this colored image reinforces the colors that are congruent with the the gray scale image and inhibits incongruent colors.

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Best illusions of the year (video)

The top 3 videos from the 2014 Best Illusion of the Year Contest are really good! Read the rest

Giant purple wizard, or accidental optical illusion?

Go ahead, kill the magic. (Via Neatorama) Read the rest

Cats and optical illusions: Now with control experiments!

Last week, I posted about a YouTuber who thinks his he might have tricked his cat with an optical illusion that's based on very human psychology. He asked other people to test the illusion on their cats, just to get some more data points. Now, the psychologists who created the illusion have pitched in to help out, posting a modified version that doesn't elicit the sensation of motion. Show your cat both versions and see whether it's the paper she's trying to kill, or the "rotating" circles. (Thanks to Diana Issidorides!) Read the rest

Are cats fooled by optical illusions?

You can help! Try tricking your cat with this same illusion for the edification of the Internet.

The shape of your beer mug might help explain why you get drunk so fast

In a recent study at the University of Bristol, young people drank beer faster when it was served to them in a curved, fluted glass. It's a small study, but the researchers think it could be a first clue toward understanding why we sometimes get more drunk than we meant to do. Researchers found it was difficult for people to judge volume of liquid in a curved glass, which might mean it's also harder to pace drinking. (Via Noah Gray) Read the rest

Fun gallery of "double take" photos

Bits & Pieces has a fun collection of "double take" photos. Each one caused a fun moment of "huh?" in my mind, until reality snapped into place. Read the rest

Weird illusion causes faces to look very distorted

[Video Link] Follow the instructions on this video and prepare to be freaked out.

(Via Doobybrain) Read the rest

Optical illusions

The Optillusions blog appears to be a collection of optical illusions, but there's something not quite right about it. Read the rest

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