Feed Button
Description Presented here is a vast gallery of many different forms of Optical Illusions. Whether these optical illusions are conveyed through fractals, photographs, architecture, art, or old fashioned pen and ink, they are bound to remind you that "seeing is not believing."

Caution!!!! Some of the optical illusions on this blog may cause dizziness or possibly epileptic seizures. The latter happens when the brain can't handle the conflicting information from your two eyes. If you start feeling unwell when using this website, immediately cover one eye with your hand and then leave the page. Do not close your eyes because that can make the attack worse.
Fractal of the Day Fractal of the Day
Provided By Sprott's Fractal Gallery


Church Railing Optical Illusion

Robert Jacobson a student at Southern Adventist University in Tennessee passed this church every time he would transit to the local grocery store.

Church Rails Optical Illusions image

On more than one occasion he thought to himself that the illusion he noticed from the road was fascinating and one of these days he should take a picture of these church railings and share them with others. On this day he remembered.
A moment of brilliance struck me today when I was getting ready to go to the grocery store. "Bring your digital camera!" I thought to myself. Every time I pass this church sign I tell myself, "One of these days you gotta take a picture of those stairs."

Church Rails Optical Illusions image

This is the approximate view you see as you crest the hill and first see the stairs. Robert explains why the picture isn't taken from exactly the position you first see it from.
I wish I could have taken the picture from the very crest in question, but I would have had to stand right in the middle of the road, and there were a lot of cars. There were safety concerns.
From this angle they look a little cockeyed, nothing amazing, they just go off in different directions. So what is so special about these rails? He further states.
But WAIT! Are they really crooked? Your vehicle descends the crest and moves swiftly past the front of the building. You look up quickly from changing the radio dial to 90.5 WSMC just in time to get another look at those handrails:

Church Rails Optical Illusions image

Whoaaaa! This was a surprise. I didn't expect to look up and see that these two rails were parallel. I'm sure examples like this can be found all around us. Thanks Robert for allowing me to use your images on this page. Go to his page and read his full take on this illusion including his take on explaining this phenomenon.


Anonymous said...

I'm more amazed by the first picture with the giant bell in the middle of the road.

Walt said...

Thanks for pointing that out. i hadn't noticed it until you said something.

Anonymous said...

these are not the same rails....look in the first picture....the rails are at the end of the building...now explain why the building keeps going in the second

walt said...

There is no need to explain anything, the white column is there and the white area at the bottom of the wall beyond the platform is in both pictures.

What is it that confuses you about these images.

Anonymous said...

How do the stairs do that?! =o

Any smart people that have an explanation because thats so weird!

Anonymous said...

pretty simple, actually. the railings are differently sized and shaped. the back railing on the ramp is a long rectangle, while the one by the stairs is a shorter parallelogram, causing the illusion that it's angled towards the viewer.

I wonder a bit what the designer thought he was doing! :p

Anonymous said...

where is the door in pic 1?

Mayhem said...

umm, yeah..the door's a GHOST!

Walt said...

You don't see the door in pic one because of the angle the shot was taken. For Pete's sake, do a little math and count the bricks from above the white access panel over to the door.

This is not rocket science. It just seems that way because it is an excellent illusion.

Anonymous said...

that is really cool how it looks like the bell is in the middle of the road in the first one. and the second one is basically two illusions in one. it looks like the one rail is at the end of the building but if you look carefully you can see that is a few feet left and that the rail are cockeyed. I just love optical illusions. they keep the mind strong.

Roger Alicea said...

Pretty cool. The difficulty in making out the ramp in the first shot really sells the illusion when initially compared to the second shot. However, even when the ramp can be made out in the second shot the illusion still lingers. This reinforces that most illusions exploit assumptions by the mind. I mean really, just how much money did the architect save by not having the ramp railing customized to be perpendicular to the ground rather than the ramp?

Anonymous said...

Aw crap...I meant even when the ramp is made out in the FIRST shot. Thus, I have generated the illusion of intelligence. OOOOH!

Tammy said...

The second picture was obviosely a hoax! As someone replied earlier the building stopped in the first and kept going in the second. Also what happened to the door that was in the first picture? In the second picture it was gone! They were two different buildings!

Copyright Notice
The documents distributed here have been presented on this blog in the spirit of providing an entertaining venue to educate those interested in optical illusions.

All Flckr.com photos are presented here via Flckr's "blog this" feature. This feature is enabled by each artist on Flckr. If you find material here that belongs to you and you would like to have it removed or credited please contact me and I will gladly follow your wishes.

Copyright and all rights therein are maintained by the authors or by other copyright holders. It is understood that all persons copying this information will adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. These works may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.