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By on February 11, 2013, with 44 Comments

One of our fans pointed me to this art instalment featuring face made from bunch of people. When I used reverse image search on Google and Tiny Eye (to get more info on this interesting poster), nothing showed up. So there you have it – an anonymous, beautiful, crowd-formed face illusion. If someone feels confident taking a detective role for a moment, feel free to do your own investigation and please share your findings with rest of us! I would be more than grateful.

Face in a Crowd Optical Illusion


44 Responses
  1. Steph says:

    It’s obviously ELVIS – the artist is Craig Alan.


  2. Thor says:

    Photoshop. Some of the figures are the same.

  3. Micah says:

    I couldn’t find that exact image or even part of it but I’m 99% sure it’s Craig Alan’s work and judging from the images with blocks I’d say it’s all digital but still somewhat cool


  4. Alan p-j says:

    Is it Elvis?

  5. Yorg says:

    It’s obvious is only a composition.

  6. Mike L says:

    It looks like a image of Elvis Presley

  7. Yimmer1 says:

    I found it! It’s Elvis. from an artist Alan Craig at http://www.thecoolist.com.
    He also has Marilyn Monroe and Lucille Ball.
    and the full portrait of Elvis.

  8. Yimmer1 says:

    here’s a picportraits-using-people-by-alan-craig-4.jpgportraits-using-people-by-alan-craig-2.jpg

  9. lia says:

    The same or similar. Although I didn’t find this exact same painting, it appears to be made by an artist named Craig Alan.

  10. lia says:

    no wait- here it is: http://www.ignant.de/2012/07/25/craig-alan/ I just didn’t recognize Elvis in the cut version above.

  11. ?! says:

    They aren’t real people, look at the shadows, also, their tops halves and bottom halves arent connected

  12. Gort says:

    Definitely Photoshop, is anyone else seeing a young Elvis

  13. Caroline Oblin says:

    It’s an image of Elvis Presley.

  14. Marcus says:

    I don’t really see this as being an illusion… The image is obviously a face. The eye and brain are not being given any information that isn’t already being shown. It’s an interesting piece of art but not an illusion as far as I’m concerned.

    • olleIcke says:

      @Marcus: Agree completely! Its nice art. There is no ‘illusion’ happening! Otherwise every non-photographic illustration would have to be called an illusion because it does not resemble reality and your head is tricked into seeing objects…

  15. Mary says:

    Something about it makes me think of a young Elvis. And I don’t care if it is Photoshopped, it is still clever.

  16. bryan says:

    could be photoshopped, but coincidences like that dont appear out of nowhere. hurricane nemo

  17. Calin says:

    Thumbnail image is Elvis

  18. Audrey says:

    i notice they are all wearing dark clothes

  19. John White says:

    The Face in a Crowd Illusion was I’m pretty sure an Advert Video. BA did ad on a beach with hundreds of extras some years ago and many others have copied the idea since.

  20. Crystal says:


  21. Christy says:

    This is a portion of Craig Alan’s portrait of Elvis. Craig Alan does aerial photographs using people as pixels. You can find out more at http://www.ignant.de/2012/07/25/craig-alan/

  22. M.Usman says:

    really good!!!!!!!!

  23. Franz says:

    He is Elvis Presley young!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. Fred says:

    Clear as the nose (and eyes) on her face . . . it’s Liza Minnelli!

  25. John Paterson says:

    Sure looks like Elvis to me.

  26. john White says:

    British Airways did this back in the 80s….

  27. LIL BIT says:

    looks like Elvis
    from a distance

  28. hanna says:

    Elvis Presley?

  29. YanHo says:

    Bottom right-ish – the 2 “child” figures and adult to the left have different shadows than anyone else. Also, many of the “people” are in motion – surely not what you’d want in a studied figure…..?

  30. Anita Dehghani says:


    The face of screen siren Marilyn Monroe made up of tiny painted figures painted by Craig Alan. Photo credit: Rex

  31. Brian says:

    It’s Prudence, the face of prudential. If you go to their website, you can see the tv ad featuring it.

  32. Scott says:

    Yeah, Photoshop. Shadows are wrong, and people moving would have just had to move through each other.

  33. Emil says:

    The picture reminds me of Elvis Presley :)

  34. Steve B says:

    It is obviously photoshopped as there are a large portion of the figures in motion and the picture would be impossible to get with everyone in the right spot seeing they are moving to or away from the right spots…. saying that I still like it

  35. Rocuro says:

    The shadows and poses appear to me to be from small figurines, like 19th century village figures. Is that Elvis?

  36. Annie says:

    I don’t care how it was made-it’s excellent.

  37. Natalie says:

    I thought maybe it was a drawing of people with their shadows drawn in.

    If you look at the photo with the red lips, the people are casting red shadows.

    This makes me think that it is not an aerial photograph, as one website reports.

    Here is another sample of the artist’s work which looks even more like it is a drawing.


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