1 EAGLETON NOTES: Optical Illusions: The Spinning Dancer

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Saturday, 13 August 2011

Optical Illusions: The Spinning Dancer

Katherine at The Last Visible Dog posted On Paradoxes a few days ago.  It set me thinking.  Not just the post but in particular the optical illusion illustrated.  Optical illusions fascinate me.  Something has to I suppose.  Escher, obviously, can always leave one wondering about perspective and illusion.  However for me one of the most fascinating that I've seen recently is The Spinning Dancer  also known as the silhouette illusion.  This is a kinetic, bistable optical illusion resembling a pirouetting female dancer. The illusion, created by web designer Nobuyuki Kayahara, involves the apparent direction of motion of the figure. Some observers initially see the figure as spinning clockwise and some counterclockwise.

File:Spinning Dancer.gif

If the foot touching the ground is perceived to be the left foot, the dancer appears to be spinning clockwise (if seen from above); if it is taken to be the right foot, then she appears to be spinning counterclockwise.

With thanks to Wikipedia which is where the Spinning Dancer links will lead you.

4 comments:

  1. This is a real gem, every time I blink she changes direction......I'll have to create a GIF file like this. I will never manage the waterfalls and stairs.

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  2. Makes my head spin - and I was going to add "but only clockwise" but then suddenly she changed direction...!

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  3. Left foot, right foot...after a blink or two I can make her go in either direction.

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