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By on September 30, 2011, with 207 Comments

Photoshop Fail or Optical Illusion?Couple of days ago, Luca has pointed me to the photo of Spanish minister Carme Chacón published on El Pais website. At first I couldn’t see anything strange in it, yet after I’ve read the title of Luca’s email (same as above) – it triggered my attention. Finally, after few moments I’ve noticed that minister’s feet were actually inverted one to another!

It seems as if her left leg ends with the right leg’s foot. Same goes for her right leg. At first I considered this yet another shameful Photoshop disaster, which I immediately forwarded to fellow webmaster who collects these. Yet, the twist came after I was explained there is actually nothing wrong with the photo itself! I couldn’t believe the photo was actually a “mere” optical illusion.

What has happened, is that Carme covered her left thigh in a way where it appears it’s pointing left, instead of it actually pointing up. This photo has been featured in several world sites as a wrong retouch, but after all the false spotlight it received, the agency who took the shoot explained how the legs were actually not crossed at all! I’m not sure I managed to explain what is happening here, but be sure to check the solution I created with help of the Photoshop (below) – it’s still hard to imagine, yet it should explain the illusion.

Photoshop Fail or Optical Illusion?


207 Responses
  1. Rick says:

    nope, still don’t c it !, this is the 1st illusion that “actually” stumped me.

  2. Zrowny says:

    nice! Also about the cinemographs, I think they are very cool. I would love to see more of them.

    • Mark says:

      @Zrowny: try going to http://www.google.com and type cinemographs in the box you see and then hit enter. You’ll find lots of pages with more cinemographs. You could also press the ‘pictures’ option you see on the left to jump directly to cinemograph pictures. Or you could wait for Mighty Optical Illusions to post more cinemographs. search-box-design-things-to-keep-in-mind

  3. Rob says:

    It took me awhile to see the illusion… I understand, but it didn’t ever look like her legs were crossed, just her ankles….

  4. Aeros says:

    I didn’t get it at first then it hit me. Very awesome!

  5. RuloCore says:

    Hi! I’m from Catalonia, where this woman is, and I have to say that it shocked me :O
    But I also have to say that this woman is making a good progress in militar matters!

  6. Marty_Mtl says:

    Allo ! daily viewer here, and long live the MOIllusion site !! keep the good work ! ..now regarding this illusion , I have to say its a good one , glad you posted it , being not created to be an illusion, but rather a “natural” one out of reality, I got puzzled !!
    Cheers to you !!

  7. matijs says:

    Perfect, i just love that kind of illusions, which takes some brains to understand :)

  8. Rob says:

    Wow, this is really disorienting. This is the stuff I love – seemingly “normal” images that create an optical illusion.

  9. clozecall says:

    I see it in the 2nd picture with the white skirt. @Rick, look at her left knee (leg in front) in the picture with the white skirt, it looks like her left leg is coming out of her right leg, and not resting on top.

  10. benni says:

    what? I don’t get it at all. :(

  11. Care Bear says:

    Now that definately qualifies as weird.

  12. kapnui says:

    I bet she stubs her toes a lot.

  13. David says:

    I love this, it’s a proper Optical illusion
    More please

  14. Alexandre says:

    The shadows of her hands helped a lot with the illusion of crossed legs.

  15. person says:

    Does anybody see what looks like a face in the window

  16. Frizlab says:

    Very good illusion! I’m stunned.
    But I don’t like cinemographs.

  17. Ribber says:

    Nothing more enjoyable than having to stare at a lovely pair of legs…

    The vertical shadow that is a combination of the cease in her bent knee and her left wrist really intensifies the illusion!

    While it’s pretty easy to see the legs both ways, it’s a lot more fun looking at them reversed :P

  18. Julia says:

    Cool, but look into the window (if ther was a window :s) And it looks like a head there, with mouth and eyes xP

  19. john says:

    nice gams…

  20. LGD-W says:

    I could only see it after I looked at your ‘solution’. Great job!

  21. Adam says:

    Very cool. I had to re-read this many times and look at the pictures multiple times to fully understand but basically, in the real photo we think we’re looking at the side of her left leg crossed under her right leg when it’s actually the underside of her left leg which just goes up and back down. She’s blocking the rest of her leg with her arm on her knee.

  22. leperchaun says:

    That`s so cool!! At 1st I didn`t get it then I saw it! o_0

  23. fossda says:

    photoshop, but not photoshop fail.

  24. confused and curious says:

    At first, I thought the illusion was the face of a man up on the glass, located behind the woman…..is that a real guy or just an illusion or something else?!?

  25. Karan says:

    Wow!! It is an optical illusion!! My GOD I was fooled at first too!1 Nice catch Vurdlak!!

  26. savants08 says:

    It’s just an illusion, and coincidence I think. After taking a second glance you can see her legs are not crossed just simply raised and crossed at the ankles. It tricked me at first I admit!

  27. Shortie says:

    Wasn’t until I looked at your photoshoped version that I got it. To those who fail to see it still.

    The sleeve of her top (Left hand) covers a part of her thigh, making it look as if the thigh we can see is part of her left leg, when in fact it is her right leg.

    The leg in the foreground is attached to the thigh and at no stage crosses over the other legs thigh/knee (only at the ankles do the legs cross)

    Very, very! Clever.

  28. PromiseMe says:

    Is is just me or are her feet HUGE?

  29. jarod says:

    dude, theres a really creepy looking guy in the background at the top, above the different languages next to her head.

  30. maria says:

    does anyone see the face in the door in the back?

  31. emy says:

    am i the only one who sees the person at the very top in the middle?

  32. michael says:

    if you dont get it try and do her position at on the first photo… it is actually quite difficult until you go to the pics afterwards

  33. Madison says:

    There’s also a scary face in the window of the first picture. :D

  34. Ben says:

    That is awesome. Such a simple little thing creates a forever mind boggling illusion. I must show this to all my friends.

  35. Tom says:

    Yea it took a few goes to see the illusion but it’s definitely real. When you look hard at the photoshopped example where her left arm is missing, you can see where her leg does actually point up giving the impression her legs are crossed in a weird way.

  36. Dolphin says:

    Ha ha,cool. Love it. And the cinemographs are cool. It would be very nice to see more.

  37. josh says:

    anyone notice the creepy looking guy at the top of the photo

  38. Eric says:

    I thought it had something to do with the couch having an empty spot xD

  39. DudeMan says:

    Nice find! I wouldn’t have noticed anything strange about this photo if it wasn’t pointed out to me.

  40. Dave says:

    Nice one.

  41. Glidos says:

    Now I do like this one. Sort of double bluff of an illusion.

    Also, just to redress the ballance a little, I also like the cinemographs. I wouldn’t necessarily call them illusions, but they do give a striking effect. I’d rather see a few of them every now and then, rather than 100 flavours of Penrose’s stairs.

  42. sharon says:

    to me it just looks like a shadow on her leg from her sleeve and makes it look like she has a false leg its quite briliant really

  43. Chenoa Zephyra says:

    You did a FANTASTIC job explaining the illusion Vurdlak; you always do! Nice work and I did think her legs were crossed the whole time!!

    • Chenoa Zephyra says:

      I meant to say that “I THOUGHT her legs were crossed the whole time”… Not “I think”….

      Keep up the nice work!!

  44. Ron C says:

    “legs were actually not crossed at all!” Okay now I see it. Oh, BTW, who is the man looking in the window?

  45. Stan says:

    This one took a while to understand. I kept concentrating on her FEET because of the explanation.
    It’s just that it appears that her left knee goes UNDER her right knee and that her legs are crossed – when they aren’t. This is good. It forced me to be perceptive.

  46. Flupty says:

    The second picture seems to also be an optical illusion, her hip on the right side seems to be non-existant.

  47. Madelon says:

    Is no one seeing the face in the glass in the background? :O

  48. steve says:

    Yeah, it would have been weird too.. if the other leg was over it wouldn’t touch the ground.

  49. Peter says:

    If you don’t get it, think about how her legs would have to be positioned if she has crossed them only at the ankles. The photo makes it It look like she has crossed her legs above the knees (combination of angle and position of her left hand covering the knee) which is what leads you to think her feet are on backwards.

  50. ellis says:

    looks like her legs are crossed twice, once above the knee and once at the ankles.

  51. Venture Free says:

    If think about where her right thigh would have to be, it would actually be weirder if her legs were in fact crossed. But of course that’s the point of illusions. Our intuition is giving us the “wrong” answer.

  52. Luis says:

    Now I get it! It took quite long to understand what you menat. For me it was obvious the way her legs were positioned. Maybe there’s other people for whom the crossed legs is the obvious one.

  53. Tara U says:

    I saw this one right away. But I clean photos for a living. X3

  54. Nagaji says:

    One of the best; astounding in its effectiveness and simplicity.

  55. Artemis Fowl says:

    I GET IT!!

  56. Nicolas says:

    Optical Ilussion?? It seems that you’re running out of material…

    • George says:

      What!? This is what’s known as a “reach”! The only thing wrong in this picture is how badly malnourished Carme Chacón looks.

  57. eee efff geee says:

    OH I get it I think those aren’t her legs, Cause if you look in the first picture Look at the knees and the legs where they start read the description a little harder :D

  58. Gail Z says:

    I think what you seeing is because she is able to cross her legs at the knees, and also at the ankles. If you look at it from
    that perspective view, you will be able to tell that its not incorrectly photoshopped nor is it an illusion. You have to have some pretty long legs to do this. None of which I have.

    • kevin says:

      this is cracking me up, if she actually were crossing her legs above the knees and at ankles then that would mean that she was born with her left foot and right foot on wrong side… are people just ignoring here toes being in wrong place?

  59. Ace says:

    This optical illusion is on-par with the animated GIF files. Do I need to stand on my head and cross my eyes to see it?

  60. Ajidicia says:

    Absolutly amazing !
    even now, i still believe that she crossed her legs above the knees (and under which is obvious) but in fact she realy crossed her legs only once (under knees).
    The shades from her hands are guilty !

    • anon says:

      That was obvious to me that her legs were only crossed once… I had a hard time trying to see what was supposed to seem like it was Photoshopped… And it still doesn’t make sense that people would see it like that, Guess i just have a weird mind or something

  61. JD says:

    It just goes to show and prove you should believe little of what you see, hear and read on the Net!

  62. jessica says:

    i understand how the legs look different but how come the feet still look weird???

  63. croat4life says:

    @rick in the 1st one the feet look at the feet!!!!

  64. brooks masterton says:

    I believe the black clothing that hides any contour contributes to the strenght of the effect of this “illusion”. I appreciate the solution pictures. a very stronge effect. Even knowing the solution I still see the leges as reversed ( especially when I look at the feet)

  65. Ron says:

    I didn’t see how her legs couldn’t be crossed until I saw the photoshopped pic with her hand “removed”. Good one.

  66. Danielle says:

    Wow it took me a few minutes but I finally figured it out! Weird!

  67. kevin says:

    Wow… mind-boggling.

  68. heatfan says:

    i was looking at the guys face in the window

  69. Ivan says:


    • David Blair says:

      Is that a painting of a face in the background or someone standing outside of a window, or could it be something Supernatural???? I don’t really believe in stuff like that but to me, it does Not look like a painting or someone looking through a window!!! It really freaked me out when I first noticed it!!!! To be honest, it still kind of freaks me out! LMAO!!!! I saved the pic on my PC, and then I opened it and zoomed in on the face and it looked even more freaky up close! I don’t have a clue what it is!!!!!!!

  70. ELIAS TANGUMA says:


  71. nadia says:


  72. phoebe says:

    did anyone notice the face on the window in the background?

  73. lo says:

    theres a face in the window

  74. branika says:

    this is a total photo shop failure!!!!!! LOL :0

  75. branika says:

    look at r cirled pic !!!!!!!!!!!!!! jealous now!woops 1

  76. rebeca tomlinson says:

    ppl were actually confused by this????? honestly???????

  77. chave says:

    it took while for me to understand the whole thing! it’s amazing :))

  78. AnthonyVI says:



  79. dc says:

    And no one noticed the creeper in the window?

  80. AshtonC1997 says:

    AHH I didn’t notice the creeper in the window until someone pointed it out!! That’s so freaking creepy! Now I’m scared… :o

  81. PK says:

    No one else noticed the weird creepy guy in the window???????????????????????? That’s what I noticed, but in the explanation, he kept saying something about her legs, and I am like, WHAT????? While there is some creepy stalker guy in the window!!!

  82. LD says:

    Creepy how the brain tries to fix that…

  83. Maths Rules! says:

    That’s kind of Creepy and hi Ms Dimos.

  84. jessica says:

    lol she has a pair of scisors in her hand

  85. Deano says:

    whats, no one noticed her hand on her thigh… thats a horrible blend job… pshhhh

  86. Steven says:

    they arnt crossed look at her legs shadow… major fail

  87. lala says:

    her hand is erased??

  88. Haleigh says:

    There’s also a face in the window behind her. O thought that’s what the thing was about…it’s kind if creepy…

  89. just saying, your a dumbass. says:

    you must be super dumb. thats not even the part your supposed to see! theres a face in the window.and the ones above this comment, all the ways up to “Jessica”, your idiots.

  90. Sarada says:

    sorry about my name there. hi c it supergoodmovies.com

  91. April says:

    People need to be more concerned with the lack of health on this girl. EAT SOME CHICKEN!

  92. bacour says:

    This is ridiculous. There is no optical illusion here. I actually had to read the description just to figure out what they were talking about and even then it took me a minute to figure out why anyone would think this. Absolutely ridiculous.

    • Anynomous says:

      Absolutely ridiculous – there is no “illusion” here – I had to read the post intensely before I even understood what you were going on about.

  93. Jeff says:

    I too had to read the description to “see” what the author saw in this photo. Only an idiot would see an illusion in this; her legs are just crossed. If this confuses you, please buy a helmet and don’t have children.

  94. Ding says:

    no no no, there is no way this is just an optical illusion. The picture taken to “prove” this fact only disproves it. In the second photo, the knees are level, and it is likely the legs are swapped behind the hands, but in the first photo, her knee is a few inches above the other, making a mere “optical illusion” impossible. Sorry, but I’m convinced this has been heavily p-shopped.

  95. Andrew says:

    i dont get it… her legs are crossed at the ankles.
    where’s the illusion?
    it does however look like someone’s painted a blob on her left knee.

  96. Richard Bond says:

    It seems that some of the commenters are not getting the photo, the skin to the right is not the uper side of her leg it is really the underside and a small portion of her ass.

    • Damion Yates says:

      Thank you! This was the key for me, even after following their explanation which made some sense, my eyes were unable to see quite why her leg still looked so crooked, that is until your comment.

  97. me with tht face says:

    i get it her legs r not crossed just beside each other and to make her seem profetional they make her arm i certin way to hide the leg and make it look crossed

  98. Willy says:

    Very well explained, as I was really confused and my mother tongue is not English and I’ve been able to understand what’s happening. Thank you!

  99. Andrew J. Coleman says:


  100. PVC Bending says:

    i don’t think i see what they’re trying to show. it just looks like someone sucks at using the clone stamp.

  101. LookintheBack says:

    does anyone else see the face in the background?

  102. Patrick Carlos says:

    Love is patient, love is kind.
    It does not envy,
    it does not boast,
    it is not proud.
    It is not rude,
    it is not self-seeking,
    it is not easily angered,
    it keeps no record of wrongs.
    Love does not delight in evil
    but rejoices with the truth.
    It always protects,
    always trusts,
    always hopes,
    always perseveres.

  103. thiago says:

    nuss” olha o rosto la atraz ‘ my god’

  104. David Willis says:

    Get a freaking life Vurdlaknippleless.jpg

  105. Gippo says:


  106. Mekana says:

    I’ve seen much worse. One bad one I saw was a bones poster and one of the girls had an extra finger!

  107. GraphicDesigner says:

    Here it is!
    Clear as day folks. The Picture, NOT photoshopped!


    • yaagdmrn says:

      You’ve got your left and right mixed up. Her left arm rests on her left leg, and her right arm rests on her left arm.

  108. BCOMMTV says:

    Nah, that’s not an illusion, I’m not buying the excuse. That’s a PS FAIL. Left thigh, left knee, not adding up. The reenactment ain’t the same. M2C

  109. anthony says:

    wa wa wa …what a comment

  110. ASSHOLEiNTERNET says:

    I clicked on a chick with boobs and ass to get this fuking site. WTF ?

  111. evan says:

    graphicdesigner: your conclusion is correct, but outline number 3 is incorrect. You outlined the lower part of her right leg and the upper part of her left leg and left buttock. You cannot outline her entire right leg since it crosses over her left and is not in view.

    • yaagdmrn says:

      “graphicdesigner: your conclusion is correct, but outline number 3 is incorrect. You outlined the lower part of her right leg and the upper part of her left leg and left buttock. You cannot outline her entire right leg since it crosses over her left and is not in view.”

      Evan, you are a cretin. Her legs are not crossed — if they were, her feet would be backwards. Outline number 3 is correct — an outline of her left leg, which is tight against her right leg — they do not cross. This is really quite straightforward for reasonably intelligent people … but there are numerous morons who still think it’s photoshopped, her legs are crossed, etc. even after it has been clearly explained.

  112. AjP says:

    @ Graphic one your heads on straight its just a light illusion the pics the real McCoy ,’-) I do graphic design too all the way in Namibia

  113. akki says:

    i can also do this but stil thinking how

  114. apo says:

    OWWW yEAHH very sexy

  115. an12345 says:

    but i think her right arm is more weird at her elbow.

  116. paul says:

    wtf do you mean her legs are not crossed! They clearly are! Unless of course her toes are reversed on her feet. This is F’n stupid. if her legs were not crossed then there would actually be something worth looking at because thhat would mean she has freaky reverse toes. This picture is totally normal and unremarkable.

  117. Hunter says:

    Wwwooooowww do u see the fac e in the back round

  118. Agustin Lagoleña says:

    Ok, it’s true, it’s a trick photo.

    It’s been manipulated so only gay people can see the face in the background.

  119. Big B says:

    did u all see one of her hand is missing in the main pic

  120. radhika says:

    very well done……..

  121. Rubberbandman says:

    Took we a while 2 c y this pic looks so messed up, i c it now. Probably took so long cuz i kept staring @ her legs. Damn!

  122. efff emmm all says:

    idont get the pic really her legs look crossed

    ido see the face in the background so obviously big b has eye sight issues or is insecure

    and as for the whole photo ive already wasted too much of my time reading these comments basically all saying the same thing

  123. Shakell says:

    This is so difficult to comprehend…I can totally see why thighs crossed + shins crossing back over and arms crossed could be soooo incredibly hard to understand.

    WTF is wrong with people?
    There is nothing at all about this photo even remotely interesting, except that she picked a very weird pose, and she’s flexible.

  124. Unknown what to said about the instigated of today.

  125. moe says:

    who cares?

  126. Amadeus says:

    You guys are completely lame. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the picture. She is simply crossing her legs. It’s lame how people easily get confused these days. Stay off the internet unless you like getting scammed. You guys are easy targets.

  127. magg says:

    y’all are stupid…the pic is made to look like her legs are crossed. IF they are, her toes are on backward…….look at the toes people…..

  128. Annonymus says:

    All I noticed was voldomort in the window… amiright?

  129. shawn says:

    Did any body eles see the face in tbe window

  130. Ertekaz says:

    Wow nice tips. We have to care when we changing something in photoshop.

  131. jeunesse says:

    WTF creepy and weird.

  132. lolnope says:

    wtf I don’t see anything weird about this picture besides the guy in the window.

  133. Damon says:

    The legs weren’t really crossed. The left hand that held the knee had covered the joint. On top of that, excessive lighting places at an lower angle coming from the left of model (right of picture) had caused an overburnt to left of model. distorting the original shadow cast on the thigh. Comparing the skin tone of the other picture (non-minister) the lady had darker shadow on the skin of her thigh as compare to the skin on her leg.

    Sometimes inappropriate use of lighting can caused unnecessary illusions or at times, deliberate illusions.

  134. Keszei says:

    Does anyone else notice that scary face in the window above the sign, looks like a ghost

  135. led sign says:

    her knee is a few inches above the other, making a mere “optical illusion” impossible. Sorry, but I’m convinced this has been heavily p-shopped

  136. LeanbodyExtreme says:

    This photo has been featured in several world sites as a wrong retouch, but after all the false spotlight it received,

  137. hahahhahahahah.very funny work…

  138. Adam says:

    I can see the issue you mention.
    If anyone else isn’t sure where to look, it’s the part of the thigh between her hands. It does look like it’s been messed with. I think there was probably an issue where the under part of her thigh was showing a bit more than she would have liked so somebody has moved it around a bit but because of what they’ve done they made her leg joint seem wrong.

    It’s really odd, but there definately looks like some odd dithering going on near that joint.

  139. siddu says:

    any body online
    chat with me

  140. jenny says:

    the pic is made to look like her legs are crossed. IF they are, her toes are on backward…….look at the toes people…..
    directions of toes are on the wrong.

  141. cdaddy says:

    ur all idiots 1 pic she’s not wearing a ring!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ur looking at the wrong thing! do i win a prize?

  142. AndreaSynks says:

    Her arms are like sticks, HOW CAN SHE BE SO SKINNY?!?!

  143. sid says:

    she is really gud at editing.

  144. Lily says:

    All of you people who say this isn’t an illusion are idiots. So what if it’s been photoshopped, it doesn’t change the fact that THERE IS an illusion. Look at her left knee; don’t you see that it looks a bit out of place if you try to connect it with her right thigh?

    And LOOK CLOSELY. Think before you speak; and understand the illusion before posting comments. It’s rude. And most of you are getting the wrong idea, it’s not about the creepy stalker or the ring or the scissor.

  145. Ke says:

    What about the creepy face in the back!

  146. Kablonet says:

    Very interesting image. Photoshop is dangeruos. :)

  147. SHAEED says:

    please pull down your cloth

  148. Donald Reid says:

    Has it ocurred to anyone other than me that this question could be totally resolved by contacting the lady woman in the photo on Skype and asking her to chgange into short shorts and stand in front of her web cam bare footed.

  149. The Troller says:

    what is voldemort doing in the muggle world :troll:

  150. BeiYangu says:

    Now I see it

  151. xP says:

    Her legs dosen’t even look wrong! This whole thing is just fucked up O.o There’s no wrong with the picture :S

  152. xP says:

    Ooooh, NOW I see it ._.

  153. I don't like u but, says:

    The creepy dude in the window, and her waist is gone. You are welcome! :) <3

  154. MrCead says:

    Her legs are not crossed, she’s just extremely skinny. The hard shadow from her arms/hands just makes the leg “look” as if they are crossed.

    But in the grand scheme of things, why is there a debate on the matter?

  155. lovely says:

    the other girl needs to eat a sammich! she is waaaay to skinny

  156. jaja says:

    wat da fuc… how can no bodies say bad things about hot chicks

  157. …Now that’s creepy

    • :-D says:

      look at the top of the globe, there is a pink wall thing look at that for a bit and you see a minty kinda stripe

  158. jazz says:

    does anybody else see that face in the glass?

  159. yeep says:

    lol i c the face first thing lol

  160. GtotheB says:

    Lol…looks like Jason. And, what a beautiful lady.

  161. carlos says:

    anyone see the freaky face in the window behind her?

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