This photograph, taken at the Phaeno Science Centre in Wolfsburg, Germany, shows a young woman carefully walking on a tightrope strung between two buildings. A pretty typical piece of advice for someone with a fear of heights is, “Don’t look down!”. In this case, however, the woman should have no trouble staring down at the scene below her. The buildings, street and cars are all drawn on a flat surface using a trick of perspective to give the illusion that she is high in the air. The position of the camera (i.e., above the young woman) further enhances the illusion of depth.
The yellow arrows on the purple background below appear to move independently to the left and the right. Specifically, the top and bottom rows of arrows seem to have the most significant amount of motion for me. If you are having trouble getting this static image to move, try staring at it while moving your eyes around to look at different parts of the image. This eye movement should induce the sensation of motion and cause the arrows to begin to slide from side to side. Akiyoshi Kitaoka, a professor of Psychology at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan, designed this optical illusion.
Much like his street painting The Crevasse, Edgar Mueller’s The Waterfall features what appears to be a giant hole in the pavement revealing a dramatic scene. Edgar created this anamorphic work in July 2007 on River Street in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada. This street painting, created for the Prairie Arts festival, was the biggest three-dimensional street painting at the time it was completed covering over 3,000 square feet of pavement. Local artists assisted Edgar with this painting helping to transform the street into a giant river flowing toward a dramatic waterfall.
Scott Kim created the original ambigram (he also calls them inversions) that is featured in this animation for a family holiday card in 1985. To create the angular letters, he cut the letter shapes out of construction paper and then traced them into his computer. The text reads the same whether it is viewed normally or rotated 180 degrees.
More of Scott Kim’s ambigrams and other puzzles can be found on his website at www.scottkim.com.
Andre Martins de Barros started painting at the age of 15. After serving time in the military, he decided to pursue his passion full-time to devote all of his time and energy to his art. In his painting titled “Le Libraire” (or “The Librarian”) below, a collection of books is arranged in such a way that they take on a life of their own.
This painting is reminiscent of the work of Giuseppe Arcimboldo, an Italian painter from the 16th century. More paintings from Andre Martins de Barros can be found here.
Have you ever looked up at the moon in the night sky only to think that it is bigger than normal? Is it possible that the moon is actually closer to the Earth on these nights? If you measure the size of the moon on any given night, it is always the same size. Our brains can be tricked into thinking that it is bigger on some nights and smaller on others. For example, when the moon is closer to the horizon, we tend to think that it looks bigger. When the moon is higher in the sky, it appears smaller. This phenomenon is referred to as “the moon illusion” and is explained in greater detail in the following video.