Peoples Geography — Reclaiming space

Creating people's geographies

Amazing Face Illusion

Well I thought I wouldn’t be posting as regularly but I’ve been sent such interesting material and I couldn’t resist sharing this one. Being a fan of visual illusions, I’m always delighted to happen upon one I haven’t already seen. This one has apparently been making another email/ blogosphere round recently but is one of the most recent illusions to be found.

Thanks to Vicki for forwarding this remarkable visual illusion:


If you look at the above images from your seat in front of the computer, Mr. Angry is on the left, and Ms.Calm is on the right.

Get up from your seat, and move back a few feet, and PRESTO!! They switch places!!

Attributed to Phillippe G.Schyns and Aude Oliva of the University of Glasgow

I was meditating upon what meanings we could glean from this particular illusion, besides the message that things may not always be as they first seem, that cognition and perception are rather fluid processes. Perhaps that each thing contains elements of its opposite? Or that you’ll never get a couple where each partner are both simultaneously calm? Just kidding, of course! ;)


7 comments on “Amazing Face Illusion

  1. homeyra
    4 May, 2007

    Amazing! I guess it is like ying and yang. One is to become the other and vice versa. Maybe todays warmongers are tomorrows peace forces! Well, this sounds a little far fetched – but who knows?

  2. miche
    4 May, 2007

    That is way cool and I like homeyra’s take on it.

  3. peoplesgeography
    4 May, 2007

    Thanks Miche and I second you on Homeyra’s hopeful quip :)

  4. Servant
    5 May, 2007

    That’s way cool. I wouldn’t contrary to your sentiments about visual puzzles except that some psychology friend gave me a book full of what seem to me like pointillist wallpapers as a gift about ten years ago. The introduction advertises that you’re supposed to stare at each image until your eyes unfocus a bit in order to reveal another picture behind the apparent random dots in the pattern. I suppose I would love such things too if I hadn’t been staring at those damned things on and off for almost ten years, feeling like an idiot.

    So I’m relieved that the instructions worked in this case. Maybe there’s hope. Have to find that idiot book and have another go. I’m sure my friend picked it up in a prank store. “How to have fun with your more gullible friends.”

  5. peoplesgeography
    5 May, 2007

    Oh, I’m the same — never could see those “hidden pictures”, darned things, no matter how hard or whatever method I tried. Elusive illusions? That’s why I like clear ones like these where you can actually get the illusion.

  6. 99
    30 June, 2007

    Oh! I should never fool around in archives. It looks to me, from my chair, like Mr. Airbrushed Stern on the right, and Mr. DayGlo Rabid on the left. When I step back it is Ms. Mellow on left, and Mr. Airbrushed Stern still on the right. I know this means I have a brain tumor or something! :-P

  7. samsr
    26 March, 2009

    TRUTH is not what you SEE.
    IT is not what you OBSERVE,
    nor is IT what you THINK/REFLECT UPON,
    it nearer a ‘OBJECTIVE MIX” of ALL

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This entry was posted on 4 May, 2007 by in Images, Philosophy, Visual Illusions.

Timely Reminders

"Those who crusade, not for God in themselves, but against the devil in others, never succeed in making the world better, but leave it either as it was, or sometimes perceptibly worse than what it was, before the crusade began. By thinking primarily of evil we tend, however excellent our intentions, to create occasions for evil to manifest itself."
-- Aldous Huxley

"The only war that matters is the war against the imagination. All others are subsumed by it."
-- Diane DiPrima, "Rant", from Pieces of a Song.

"It is difficult
to get the news from poems
yet men die miserably every day
for lack
of what is found there"
-- William Carlos Williams, "Asphodel, That Greeny Flower"