Optical illusions that will blow your mind include images of horses and tigers, moving shapes, and floating ships. Optical illusions show how our brain interprets images using factors like color, light, and surroundings. They are captivating examples of perception. Optical illusions have fascinated people for centuries across various cultures. They both delight and confuse individuals and social media also enjoys sharing them. Many optical illusions have gone viral, leaving millions of people baffled.
Check out our top optical illusions in our must-see round-up below. Our mix of old and new creations will leave you amazed. If you want more, check out these mind-blowing optical illusions. And if you’re going to create your illusion, look at our guide on downloading Photoshop for the tools you need.
What are Optical illusions?
Do your eyes sometimes deceive you? Have you ever seen something that confused you so much that you had to blink and take a second look? Optical illusions might have fooled you. Optical illusions are images or pictures that appear different from reality. It happen when our eyes send misleading information to our brains, making us see things that aren’t there.
22 Best Optical illusions pictures and Gif
Here we list some trending Optical illusions; including optical illusions pictures, drawings, faces, elephant and more.
1. The spinning vortex optical illusions
We love optical illusions that look like they’re moving but still images. These examples are called physiological optical illusions. They occur when the brain’s senses are overwhelmed by too much color, light, movement, or dimensions to process.
This design is mesmerizing with its purple and yellow vortex-like pattern. Don’t worry; it’s not a GIF or a video. The image is ultimately still. When you look at the design, the different patterns, lights, and levels trick your mind into thinking it’s moving. Focus on the center of the image, and you’ll see it stop.
2. Are These Lines Parallel?
Your eyes might deceive you, but they are indeed correct. The café wall illusion works because of the strong contrast between the two types of bricks. When we look at images, our brains tend to make dark areas appear lighter. It is called irradiation. This process might be responsible for creating a false warping effect.
3. The hypnotic circle optical illusions
The hypnotic circle optical illusions created by Brusspup, is a geometric trick. The white circles create a rolling circular pattern inside the red circle. However, this is just an optical illusion, so that cannot be true. The white circles move in straight lines, but their timing creates the illusion of circular motion. You can find full video at their Youtube channel.
4. Optical illusions Elephant
How long have people been fascinated by optical illusions? This sculpture at Airavatesvara Temple in Tamil Nadu, India, is one of the oldest optical illusions. In the beautiful 12th-century Dravidian architecture, there are intricate carvings of chariots and avatars. Among them, you can spot two creatures joined together with one head. Look at the creature on the right. It’s an elephant. The elephant on the left is a bull if you cover its body and legs.
Elephant illusion: How many legs does the elephant have?
How many legs do you see? Some people think elephants have four legs, but others believe they have five. Some people believe that the elephant has four legs and five feet. Is this possible?
5. Van Gogh’s Starry Night optical illusions
We’re amazed by this incredible Van Gogh optical illusion that makes us see stars. If you look at the spinning image, the famous illustration will appear to move and swirl. It is a fascinating example of how our brains can distort a vision based on how our eyes perceive it. I could spend hours staring at it. The original painter, who was known for being addicted to absinthe, might have imagined the painting just like this.
6. How many horses are there?
Here’s another illusion with a horse theme that has been confusing people since the 1970s. The design makes us wonder how many horses are in the painting. No matter how many times we counted the horses, we couldn’t find the answer that the artist, Bev Doolittle, revealed as correct. This optical illusion is unique. It is a literal optical illusion intentionally created by the artist.
7. Black hole expanding optical illusions
Optical illusions are mind-blowing, but few are as close to showing the future as this one. When viewers look at the center of the black hole, they might think it’s getting bigger and coming closer. However, the image is not moving at all. It’s just the viewer’s brain reacting and guessing what will happen. More than 86% of people who see the illusion in a report from the Frontiers in Human Neuroscience journal perceive the shape as expanding. Are you one of them?
8. The Cat on the Stairs optical illusion
The internet is divided over a feline-themed optical illusion. People are still determining if the cat is going up or down the stairs in this post. The illusion of the cat’s direction has been circulating online since 2015, but we still need to find out how it’s going.
9. The Hidden Tiger Optical illusion
From tiny felines to massive felines. Here’s an incredible optical illusion by an artist. Can you find the hidden tiger in the image? Not the first tiger you see, but the one showing its teeth. Once upon a time, there was an invisible tiger. We promise you’ll find it in the image, and you’ll be surprised when you do. This optical illusion is both literal and amusing, making us smile.
10. The Impossible Slide Optical illusion
Are you a fan of optical illusions? How about a 3D printable one? Struck Duck did the same thing with this Mindbender. This optical illusion shows a ball rolling up a 3D-printed slide, defying gravity. If you watch the whole video, you’ll notice that the illusion changes depending on the angle you view it from.
11. The Phantom Queen optical illusion
Check out this fantastic video showcasing the 2021 Illusion of the Year contest winner. The Phantom Queen optical illusion shows an invisible queen piece reflected on a chessboard. The video shows a relaxed 3D shape that matches the chessboard pattern. The Queen is hidden in that shape, making it seem like she’s not even on the board.
12. The rotating horse optical illusions
The spinning horse illusion has everyone wondering, which direction is it turning? The geometric horse twists and turns and TikTok users have been speculating about its direction, but we still don’t know how it goes.
13. Moving pictures
Artist Akiyoshi Kitaoka created a mesmerizing optical illusion. The design creates the illusion of movement using the ‘anomalous motion phenomenon,’ even though it’s a still image. The way an image hits our retinas in a certain spot makes our brains think that the picture is moving.
14. What’s hiding amongst the stripes?
Dr. Michelle Dickinson recently shared an eye-crossing striped optical illusion on Twitter. Let’s check it out! When you shake your head vigorously from side to side (carefully!), it comes to life. An image will appear within the lines. What kind of furry friend do you see?
15. Spinning discs optical illusion
This illusion is from Clive Gifford’s book Eye Benders and was inspired by experimental psychologist Akiyoshi Kitaoka. No, this optical illusion is not a GIF. It’s a still image, but the wheels appear to turn in front of your eyes. It occurs because your eyes continuously scan and adjust an image as the autofocus. To stop the wheel, focus on just one.
16. How many numbers? optical illusion
The internet was completely puzzled by this illusion about numbers. It asked a simple question: How many numbers do you see? At first, there are only three numbers. But the longer you look, the more numbers you see. There are a total of seven numbers. Please specify which numbers they are.
17. Floating ship optical illusion
Optical illusions are usually made by hand or digitally, but sometimes, we come across natural examples. These fantastic ‘floating’ ships are one of the most mind-boggling phenomena we’ve seen. A person walking in Cornwall was surprised to see a boat floating above the water. A photo of this unusual sight became very popular online. It is one type of optical illusion called accidental optical illusions.
18. The Union Flag optical illusion
Many of us overlook the beauty of the world around us. What do things look like if you’re color blind? The BBC made a video in 1985 to teach people about color blindness using an optical illusion with the Union flag.
To see the flag in its original colors, viewers should focus on the dot for 20 seconds. After that, the screen will turn white, and the flag will appear red, white, and blue due to a “three receptor phenomenon.” According to the narrator, this happens because the phenomena make other color receptors take over when some of them get tired. The illusion, even though it’s over 35 years old, is still mind-boggling. Are you still celebrating Jubilee Day? Remember to check out the Queen Elizabeth II optical illusion too!
19. Rotating boxes
Are these boxes spinning in place? No, sorry! They are completely still. The flashing background creates the illusion. To understand what’s happening, try focusing on just one corner of the cube. It will help you stop the spinning and see the truth for yourself. Check out this illusion shared by Twitter user @jagarikin.
20. The 2-in-1 spinning optical illusion
This optical illusion is both hypnotic and mind-boggling, containing two illusions. The dots can appear to change color or disappear depending on how you look at the design. To experience the design’s illusions, follow the light grey spot or stare at the cross in the center for 30 seconds. Lenstore created this optical illusion, one of the best we’ve seen this year.
21. What color is the circle?
This optical illusion, made by the same creators as the one above, uses a similar idea. It’s simple but still enjoyable to look at. The circle’s color shifts as it moves across a gradient background. No, it doesn’t. The circle remains the same color. The only thing that changes is the background color against which you see it. The brain sees colors differently based on the object’s surroundings. We enjoy optical illusions with scientific explanations. They help us remember important things about using color in design.
22. Super Illusion Brothers
— じゃがりきん (@jagarikin) November 20, 2020
Prepare to have your mind blown by this captivating optical illusion. Called ‘Super Illusion Brothers,’ this artwork shows a group of figures climbing stairs and then leaping from the highest point. Doesn’t it? No, it doesn’t. It is an optical illusion post, so it’s not surprising. The tiny green beings are entirely still. It is a type of illusion called ‘bright phi’ that tricks our brains into perceiving bright objects differently.
We lists the most popular optical illusion. Scientists think optical illusions happen because our brains are great at recognizing patterns and familiar objects. Our brains quickly piece together separate pieces to create a complete image. Clever artists can use these tendencies to fool our eyes and brains into seeing illusions!