Sunday Morning Illusion

Today, a single image that may leave you scratching your head for a few seconds as you try to figure out what's illusory about it.

(© 2005 Dejan Todorović)

If you can't get it, explanation is after the break.

If you look to the left of the arch, there appear to be three semicircular tubes right next to each other. On the right side, it appears to be a series of sinusoidal waves, or ripples. The different cutouts at the bottom help to cue us to see them that way. Without those cues, it would be ambiguous as to which one the shading is representing.

You may now go back to believing that the world is as you percieve it if you wish. Just know that you're lying to yourself.


Ryan is a professional nerd, teaching engineering in the frozen north. Somewhat less professionally, he is a costumer, author, blacksmith, juggler, gamer, serial enthusiast, and supporter of the Oxford comma. He can be found on twitter and instagram @studentofwhim. If you like what I do here, feel free to leave a tip in my tipjar.

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One Comment

  1. I didn't even see the sinusoidal waves on the right until I read the description. I saw one and a half waves on looking at the left, and three tubes looking anywere else. Now I see the tubes in the middle, the three full waveforms on the right, and one and a half wave on the left.

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