Which Direction Does She Spin?

Check out the optical illusion below. Since the figure is totally black, there's no depth- you can see her spinning either clockwise or counter-clockwise. Which way do you see it first? Try reversing the spin direction- moving your finger in a circular motion at the rate of rotation can help you reset. How easy is do you find it to swap perspective? Does it make your brain hurt?

Picture of Which Direction Does She Spin?
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FFVIIBOY7 years ago
dude i was just looking at this and she was counter clockwise and all of a sudden she stopped and went the other way!
Wait a sec... what about the shadow? It would only appear on the back side so then she really is moving CCW.
Not if the light comes from behind...
Well, the light is coming from behind, but that doesn't change anything.
If you look at the shadow, then the rotation of the figure. Get it to reverse, and watch the shadow again. It moves nearly straight across so whether it "goes behind or in front" is how you perceive it, since this is a flat 2 dimensional figure, it really only oscillates back and forth and does not go around in either direction. I can see this especially with the lowest foot and the shadow. Granted, I have an odd sort of perception when it comes to many optical illusions. Most times, I can "flatten them out" and perceive the actual 2 dimensions only", but this has it's disadvantages. Often I misperceive "real space" and my depth perception is sometimes off. Parallel parking is a nightmare.
The shadow does not move straight across. If it did, it would appear for the entire animation. In fact it carves out an elliptical shape.

The fact that the shadow only appears during half of the animation means that during that half the foot is further away from the camera and is able to cast the shadow. I think this effect is lessened because she rises during that half, but it's still there.
Yes, but the curve is slight enough that one can perceive it moving in either direction since the curve would be equal no matter which "side to side" movement one observed. I know, it is hard to break free of the illusion of depth, and just see the figure move back and forth (that is, switching directions continuously). It requires one to alter the "starting point" with each half cycle of oscillation. Believe me, it "can" be seen as moving in both direction :-)
You don't see enough of the reflection to interfere too much with reversing the rotation, but if you actually did see more of it, it would be more difficult.
As it is, it actually helps me "reverse the direction" of the imagined rotation; that and the lowest foot.
i know about bad depth perception... born blind in my left eye.
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