Is your mind in the gutter? Or are you a shining ray of innocence?
Well this simple image should help answer that question fairly quickly. You see it’s an optical illusion that taps into a very specific part of how our brains work.
At first glance it might look like a couple engaged in a ‘passionate’ embrace but look closely and you will (eventually) start to see the hidden depth, which is that this is in fact a perfectly innocent image of animals
Look closer and you’ll see that while the image has very definitely been laid out to show a couple embracing, it is in fact a collection of around nine dolphins.
So here’s where the science comes in because what you saw first will very much depend on what you’ve seen growing up.
It’s a form of image association which means that the brain will immediately start going through its own memories to associated it with something it has seen before, this in turn allows you to process what you’re seeing much quicker.
In essence it’s simply a way of ‘cheating’ the reality by seeing what is more than probably the image in front of you.
Now if you’re a young child the likelihood is that you’re going to see the dolphins first simply because you haven’t been exposed to the adult themes that are present in the other image.
Of course adults have more than likely seen images of such an adult nature and so that becomes the first thing they see.
If you thought that optical illusion was tough, try and get your head around this:
Kokichi Sugihara is a man who enjoys making us question our sense of reality. A professor at Meiji University in Japan Sugihara just won second prize in the international Best Illusion of the Year Contest for this brand-new illusion which seemingly shows a series of circular shapes reflected as rectangles/
In the video Sugihara places a number of 3D printed objects in front of the mirror, which seemingly transform in their reflection.
Sugihara explains on the site how it works saying, “The direct views of the objects and their mirror images generate quite different interpretations of the 3D shapes.”
Then thanks to some pretty nifty shaping at the top the edges become blurred and the illusion is complete.
If for some reason you’re a glutton for punishment then check out Sugihara’s other masterpiece: