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By on August 28, 2013, with 21 Comments

Phenomenal optical illusion was just sent in by Melanie. Even though she can’t be sure about the author and its origin, Melanie noticed how the hole animated #gif seems to rotate (when observed as a whole), which is just the opposite from when you observe each and every individual dot by itself. Crazy, isn’t it? Update – source: Bees&Bombs

Circling Flower Optical IllusionCircling Flower Optical Illusion


21 Responses
  1. mrboma says:

    This is a great example of how a wave propagates through particles (or a sports stadium, for that matter). The individual particles move in their own pattern in a local area, but taken together, the wave moves along through and past that local spot.

  2. Chris says:

    That is a good one

  3. sad-hero says:

    wow .. thats crazy .. I love it

  4. Rana says:


  5. nelson says:

    Looks really great using peripheral vision.

  6. Michael Affronte says:


  7. Yvan says:

    It’s the same thing as wave hand in standium

  8. Scott says:

    I’ll bet this animation is a good analogy as to how ocean and lake waves move across the water’s surface, even though any given bit of water hardly moves overall from its place in the water.

    Cool GIF. Pretty colors, too.

  9. Nico says:

    The whole image *actually* rotates, in a sense.
    In my opinion it’s not a real illusion.

    It’s like waving a rope up and down from one end when someone holds the other end.
    Every point in the rope only goes up and down, but the “wave” moves along the rope.
    Here the wave is circling around, even though no dot is. They are just out-of-phase in a sinusoidal way.

  10. Christian says:

    I think, it is the same principle as for the Lissajous curves. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lissajous_curve

  11. Justin says:

    The amazing http://beesandbombs.tumblr.com/ is the source, you should really give them some credit.

  12. Someone says:

    But it’s just like a Mexican wave!
    Seriously, it does.

  13. Sasa says:

    i think the secret is the 16th dot when drowing 3 petal

  14. Jackson says:

    The amount of time that went into just the timing on each dot must be intoxicating. That or the artist was lol.

  15. Sinusman says:

    Actually this is an illustration of the “phi phenomenon” (see Wikipedia).
    And it strangely looks likes a simple version of one of my works, in which I modify global rotating pattern by only changing the ball’s starting times.
    Check it out at http://www.wavegrower.com/index.php?page=similarsingular

  16. Pikachu .-. says:

    U stare at a dot then it switches direction…. COOL

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