Instructables

Optical Illusion - Two Lines

Featured
Picture of Optical Illusion - Two Lines
This Instructable will show you how to make a simple optical illusion. This illusion is called the Poggendorff Illusion and has been around for a while.

So what's happening in the image below? What is that red line doing there?

Go to the next step to see what's going on inside the black rectangle.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Inside the box

Picture of Inside the box
Here you can see that the blue line actually leads into the red line. Sure, the color contributes to the illusion, but it can be confusing even if the lines are all black.

Step 2: Black Lines

Picture of Black Lines
Here we can see two black lines going in and out of the black rectangle. I'm sure you know what's coming, but go to the next step to see what's happening inside the box.

Step 3: Inside the box

Picture of Inside the box
As you can see, one of the lines is continuous, but it shifts from being the top line to the bottom lines.

Step 4: 2 lines with color

Picture of 2 lines with color
poggendorff5.gif
If we go back to the colored lines, we can see the same effect.

Step 5: How to make it

Picture of How to make it
You can use many different graphics programs to recreate these images. Photoshop, Illustrator, GIMP, Inkscape, or any other. As long as it can make lines and rectangles, and they all can, you're fine.

Start by making one diagonal line.

Step 6: Copy the line

Picture of Copy the line
Copy the line and paste another one just a little bit below it.

Step 7: Copy both lines

Picture of Copy both lines
Now copy both of those lines and move the copy so that the ends of the two lines come together like in the image below.

Step 8: Put a rectangle on top

Picture of Put a rectangle on top
poggendorff3.gif
poggendorff4.gif
poggendorff5.gif
poggendorff1.gif
poggendorff.gif
Just drop a rectangle on top and you're done! Now you can play with making the lines different colors to recreate the images from the beginning of the Instructable.
madhops06205 years ago
I don't understand what the illusion is. Anyone care to explain?
it makes it appear as if the both lines are connected but in reality only one is to the other on the opposite side, it's a trick of the eye
syfire slayer045 years ago
Well... don't really work with me cause I got geometric vision. Since birth, I have problem to see the distance, so my deep vision rely on geometric form.
It's too bad. You should really see how fascinating the illusion is. You're definitely missing out. I wish I could help you see it.
Oh don't worry, I can still see how the illusion work, but I don't fall.
basically u see the blue line comin into the black rectangle, and u see a read and blue one coming out the other side. ur brain thinks that the blue lines are connected, when actually its the read and the blue line connected. get it?
To me the blue line on the left looks like it is between the lines on the right.
yeah I figured it out right after I posted this
lol :D
nevermind, haha now I feel stupid
sharlston5 years ago
this is so cool any more cool ideas then please email them to mattyts@live.co.uk
imonsei5 years ago
heh. I actually thought it was a trick but i guessed that the line above went between the two at the bottom :P
amakerguy5 years ago
I fell for the trick to. Brains are so cool, I like them because there always a mystery.
ChrysN5 years ago
Nice illusion, it is scary how easy it is to trick our brain.
BeanGolem5 years ago
Classic, but WHY does our mind do that?
nice sweet blows ur mind a little that what we see is not reality... excuse me i just finished reading the watchmen comics deep stuff
hg3415 years ago
well done i liked it all lot you fooled me too
hg341 hg3415 years ago
im sry i sayed that worng

well done i liked it a lotyou fooled me too

thats what i ment to say
Very cool! First comment! nice ible. It fooled me!
Pro

Get More Out of Instructables

Already have an Account?

close

PDF Downloads
As a Pro member, you will gain access to download any Instructable in the PDF format. You also have the ability to customize your PDF download.

Upgrade to Pro today!