Don't Believe Your Eyes

Posted on August 1st, 2008, by Petra


I had this image kicking around on my computer for quite a while and today I came across it again. It is just an overhead shot through a skylight (I was experimenting taking the same shots of harsh lighting contrasts with and without a flash).

When one looks more closely, the image changes – suddenly one sees an ottoman, made out of beige and blue suede, sitting on a black floor. Why and how that happens one can read up on here: Figure-Ground (perception).

So I managed to create an optical illusion.

That’s another first in my life.

Please leave a comment

  1. Karen Says:

    When I first saw it, I thought it was a white, solid geometrical object, like a pill at very high magnification. When you revealed that it was a skylight, I went back and looked, and I could see that. That’s a great photo. With your permission, I may put it on TFG, as a “what is this” and see if anyone can figure it out. Might be fun. What do you think?

  2. Petra Says:

    Yes, Karen, feel free to to that.

    It will indeed be fun to see whether anyone can figure it out.

    Everything depends so much on perspective and perception – if you look at the blue area first, you get an object. Once you look at the black area (especially the lower part), you get the skylight.

    Lesson learned: Things are not always what they seem to be.

    How true.

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