Hey everybody! This month I went with Optical Illusions because they are so cool! As per usual, I will have a tutorial linked down below for you to follow if you want to make a simple optical illusion!
What are Optical Illusions?
Optical Illusions are images that trick our brain using color, light, and patterns. When your eyes look at it and send the information to your brain, it creates a perception that doesn’t match reality. When you look at an optical illusion, you might see one thing, only to find out when you look at it in a different angle it might be different! Optical illusions are super fun to challenge you mind and have fun, and there are super simple ways to make some to trick your friends/family!
A Short History of Optical Illusions And Some Famous Artists
In terms of how optical illusions came about, it’s quite a mysterious past. From what we know, Epicharmus presented the explanation of this phenomenon way back in 5th century B.C. After confusion on why our eyes can be tricked, Aristotle attempted to explain this phenomenon adding (in 350 B.C.) that it was possible to fool the senses quite easily. As time progressed, more information and knowledge was introduced and enriched from the research of philosophers and others. Greek temples has slanting roofs to create the illusion they were horizontal. When the walls and roofs were perpendicular, the roof appeared to be curved. Centuries later, people started getting interested in optical illusions and art again and new extensive studies were done. Maurits Cornelis Escher, a Dutch graphic artist, was known for his mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, and mezzotints. Hungarian-French artist, Victor Vasarely, was known as the grandfather/ leader of the Op art movement, from the 1930s, creating some of the earliest art of its kind. These are just two well-known optical illusion artists, but there are so many more to learn about!
Types of Optical Illusions
Optical illusions are known for being trippy in many different ways, and there are many types. Let’s take a look at some of them (I will link a website that goes more in depth into each type of illusion down below). There are 3 main/major types – Literal Illusions, Physiological Illusions, and Cognitive Illusions (which breaks down into ambiguous, distorting, paradox, and fictional illusions, which I will not be getting into today).
Starting with literal illusions, in these, you get a different illusion from the picture that the actual objects in the picture that create the picture. Next, physiological illusions, where you see an image and after staring at something that tires out a part of your eyes, the other part works instead. These are the kind when you stare at an image for a certain amount of time, and when you look away, you see another image, often known as an after image. And lastly, cognitive illusions, in which the brain relates the objects in the image to the built in assumptions or knowledge. Essentially, your brain sees something and connects it from previous knowledge of the real world. Now that we know the 3 main/major types of illusions, let’s take a look at some example from each category.
In the first one, do you see an old man and woman, or a woman and man in sombreros? In the second, in the white dots where the lines intersect, do you see flashing black dots, and when you try to look at one, does it dissapear? In the last images, are the lines straight or slanting? That first one is a literal illusion, the second is a physiological illusion, and the last is a cognitive illusion! Pretty cool right?
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Here is a simple optical illusion tutorial you can make to trick your friends and family! : https://ksdreamscape.wordpress.com/2021/05/31/optical-illusions–simple-tutorial/
These are the sources I used and places you can go to learn more about optical illusions: