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By on July 22, 2010, with 146 Comments

Just a quick newsflash here – after more than a month, finally I have managed to fix the “Top Rated Illusions” section. I’m talking about that nice little block at the end of our sidebar, one that gives you a list of all time highest rated illusions. The list is now automatically updated once per hour, so if you think some illusions deserve to be there, be sure to rate them accordingly! For the illusion part, you may think these stairs below were digitally manipulated, but I dare to day it’s just an illusion. Can you figure out how the author did this?

  • Jonathan

    umm…..the author just stacked smaller and smaller blocks on top of each other???

  • IMHO it’s a sculpture made by progressive smaller steps… so we think it’s an infinite stairway, but it’s only a sort of pyramid…

  • scumbag

    lol a stairway to heaven

  • step aside, I’M A DOCTOR !

    is it a pyramid shape thingy?
    and what the rope in front of it..?

  • How is this an illusion?

  • devin

    i know this sounds stupid but i would call this a stairway to heaven since its a never ending stairway into the sky

  • David

    By making the stairs become narrower so they come to a point at the top?

  • base8

    it’s just a pyramid.

  • Cake Walk

    It’s just a pyramid.

  • Falon

    Just a triangle with jagged edges? It looks awesome if that’s what it is.

  • ivonavich

    dont know about the stair illusion, but the dog face and the seal face illusion are unreal

  • You’ve got to make the steps short in height as well as length. That gives the illusion of going off into eternity…

  • Cherry Blossom

    Haha. Yeah It’s is just a pyramid made to look like it is going back, but it just goes straight up

  • Xheia

    I’m not sure what you fixed with the highest rated illusions list, but it is not very effective currently – most articles on the list only have a few votes, and are probably there by chance.

  • If it’s an un-doctored photo, it looks like it’s built using forced perspective.

  • jacob

    blocks of stone on top of each other, creating a pyramid almost like the temples of the mayan and aztec civilizations. Great illusion though!

  • Josh

    Its just like a pyramid right? It doesn’t go out over the edge, its flat on the back

  • Hedgeh

    It’s a vertical structure.

  • ChibiHetalia

    Pretty good illusion if not looked at too closely. The work done to make the actual structure must’ve been extensive. Photography is very beautiful. I like it a lot. Illusion wise, i give it 4 stars. Good, but simple.

  • Is it that staircase is an arc, and the point where it “disappears” into the clouds is its zenith?

    Very beautiful illusion though. Has a haunting quality to it…

  • in my opinion its just a step pyramid, looked at from the right distance and angle it would look like a stair case

  • Stairs

    It’s a pyramid.

  • The stairs aren’t very long. Just above a person head. They get narrow and smoler steps too fast. It gives the sensation of being very long. Very good perspective illusion.

  • says says says says

    wow first comment.
    I think it is either a statue or the author has done something to it because there is a line going through it that definitely wouldn’t be there in real life.

  • Jacob

    I’d like to see the side view of this.

  • Thomas

    That’s just like an egyptian pyramid exept smaller , you can’t see the other sides and every step gets smaller

  • Fred

    I would venture to guess that it is a sculpture fabricated to look as if it were stairs when observed from one specific point, however I am stumped as to the nature of what appears to be a twisted wire crossing upwards and to the left in front of the object and the trees in the background. It makes no sense as it appears to be only a few feet above the ground in front of the structure. The only other explanation I could come up with is that the stairs are actually a picture suspended horizontally but that would mean it is protruding from (what appears to be) the top of the slope a very long way. It would be difficult to support such a picture let alone a structure that distance. This is a very effective illusion. Either that or it really is an astounding structure.

  • Latisha

    great illusion … . . folded paper maybe . . .

  • si

    are you Russian?

  • Lol

    i think i have seen this before, but it looks like a statue that has been taken from a very deseptive angle.

  • Pascale Fortin

    I don’t think it’s photoshoped, it a good one!

    I am probably the th to write so, but there is a mistake in the intro “but I dare to day it’s just an illusion.”

  • Mark

    easy, it’s like looking at a pyramid

  • Mike

    Once you get past the first 3-4 steps, it goes more up than out, and the steps graduate down to about 1cm by the top, so the whole thing is about 2.5-3m high.

  • Jacques Kuun

    Its a tower stretching upwards, that looks like stairs going forward. Great illusion.

  • Christopher Jarvis

    Hint: Look at the line through the middle…

  • I think it’s some kind of pyramid, with the right angle you can do wonders in photography :D

  • Barbarella

    Well it’s just a pyramid, straight up, with jagged edges………..isn’t it?

  • Pete

    Cool illusion. I like this one a lot :-)

  • Mark P

    They aren’t stairs, it’s just a marble obelisk. The ‘steps’ aren’t getting further away towards the top, they really are getting smaller, just like they look like.

  • Michael

    I’m guessing it must be a pyramid of some sort. That is very interesting – I have to force myself to see it as a pyramid or my eyes keep reverting back to the illusion.

  • I’m guessing that the background is just a painted backdrop and so are most of the steps going up, the foreground is an artificial scene created on a set.

  • well, its more likely a photographed back drop as opposed to a painted one.

  • It’s just a pyramid!!!!
    XD as you can tell im very excited i figured it out by myself!!!!!

  • Wyatt

    Wow! This is amazing! I am having a hard time believing what I am seeing.

  • Christ van Willegen

    From about the 8th step from the bottom, the shadows don’t need to align to the step below it, so you can just make a ribbed patterns creating the illusion of ‘going up’.

  • Anon

    Its a pyramid

  • onixqwert

    I can’t figure out! Using mirrors?
    Would you tell us please?

    I think it was mirrors.

  • Cheadle

    It’s a pyramid

  • Michael

    Wow great illusion. Took me a while to spot it

  • Divina

    I have no idea! Photo-Shop?? <3

  • chris

    the triangle effect, where its just the stairs are a drawn triangle, but with detail and background added to it

    on another hand, i cant believe that the ‘chop cup: wheres the ball?’ video is not in the top ten. that was one of the most awesomest videos ever

  • alijaya

    it’s just statue :p

  • Tapered Pyramid would achieve this effect easily without having any exorbitant dimensions

  • n17ment

    erm, there only stairs till above eye level, then its just a verticle tower made to look like stairs

  • Merrick

    I’m thinking it’s a pyramid rather than stairs, but I really don’t know.

  • Care Bear

    Is this anything like Jacob’s ladder?

  • t

    Guess I’ll be listening to my old Led Zeppelin albums again. Very nice illusion. My guess is a pyramid face with an exaggerated vanishing point. I’d love to see a photograph from a different perspective.

  • Steve

    I’m presuming it’s just a pyramid?

  • David Bethke

    Forced (false) perspective?

  • angeliqa8

    Its a pyramid that just gets smaller and smaller vertically giving the illusion that it extends outward toward the water. With or Without the illusion, its a beautiful photograph.

  • Christine

    My guess is that it’s a pyramid, not stairs!

  • dd2

    make sure you look at the picture when it is smaller and don’t let the title deceive you. its just a small white pyramid.

    great illusion but i think you should talk about the illusion first, then about anything unrelated.

  • Jacob

    id say that its a not a really long stair, but rather, a triangular stair with the stairs shrinking and the photo taken at a certain angle..cool illusion!

  • I think it’s marble or stone slabs cut into very precise sizes, and stacked one on top of another. The great part of this piece is that every slab has to be an exact size. Good illusion.


    Wonderful! Where is it? Who is the author??

  • Abbo

    Yeah, it’s all about the angle. Kinda like the 3D chalk drawings.

    I would like to see it from another angle.

  • Abbo

    Forgot to say that it is like a statue standing right in front of you, with the steps getting darker and smaller all the way up, so it looks like it reaches the sky when you stand right in front of it.

    At least, that’s what I think.

  • Matt Hodgkins

    It’s a pyramid shape that uses forced perspective. Kind of like when you’re a kid and you draw those railroad tracks that look like they’re going into the distance. Pretty neat and always effective.

  • Carlos R.

    nice ilussion

  • This appears to be a pyramid shaped monument with each level decreasing in size. I actually saw the monument before I saw the stairs.

  • Yup. The flat part of the stairs (where you’d step)are not flat but beveled angles. It could be (we can’t see the whole thing) that it’s a beveled pyramidal shape overall. The illusion is that the beveled “steps” are flat and that you could actually step on them. You couldn’t or you’d like slip off. The distance illusion is the size of the “steps” getting smaller as the pyramidal shape reaches it’s point.

  • Banksy

    thats pretty obvious. its a pyramid rather than stairs. still looks pretty cool though.

  • Editor

    At the end of your post, it says, “For the illusion part, you may think these stairs below were digitally manipulated, but I dare to day it’s just an illusion.” You may want to fix the word “day”” and change it to “say”.

    However, nice illusion. I love the site.

    Last, but not least. FIRST!!!

  • Chris


  • Faith

    hmmm weird

  • it’s a pyramid that keeps on getting smaller

  • Debra Howard

    It’s a statue that goes to a point…taken at the right angle it looks as though they are stairs going towards the heavens. Nice illusion.

  • Christian Bergsten K

    Seems to me that it is a kind of staircase pyramid where each “step” is actually sloping. You can see the angle on the sides and that it varies forming a perspective from the correct angle, thus making a staircase.

    I may be completely wrong, but that’s what I see.

  • maddi

    he made the steps shorter and narrower until it came to a point likely

  • dragon fire 3000

    …thats cool

  • parrotheadfl

    No, I can’t figure out how they did this? How?

  • Dawna


  • Looks like it could be a pyramid? That’s the only thing I can think it might be. Great illusion though…

  • felp

    Is a sculpture

  • coco

    nice one but it appears to be a pyramid shaped structire with grooves cut into it made to look like stairs

  • mary

    is it an arch? that’s a possibility. altho it really looks digitally minipulated…

  • Charles Couillard

    kinda pyramid shaped

  • dude

    its a stairway to heaven.

  • Alibek

    Isn’t it a pyramid?

  • lolsmileyface

    Wait a minute…we think that it’s a stairway to heaven but it’s just a sculpture right before our eyes

  • Janelle McDermott

    I love this, I can see how it works, and I love it! Would like to see a side view.

  • EdwardCullensGal

    Haha madd. First comment? <3

  • You should have called it ‘Stairway To Heaven’. Pretty nice. I like how the black and white has made it look artistic.

  • Potions Lady

    I was thinking it is actually a sculpture of a pyramid with fine gradients getting smaller each time.

  • Dana

    Is it a tower / pyramid or what is it? Very strange…
    How long will it take to reach heaven? ;-)

  • qwertyuiop

    i think its actually a pyramid or something that has a stair-like pattern on it

  • Someone


  • tooom

    its never ending D:!

  • mennoillusion

    Its just a stone statue :)

    • Lyndon Huber

      A very nicely made, soild stone staircase-statue?

  • a ridiculously well painted picture hanging from the sky?

  • lolly xx

    I’m guessing it just goes directly up
    and is only a metre or so high

    (it’s not actually going
    diagonally upwards towards the sky)

  • bduga

    looks real

  • kristy

    wow this is awesome it is like the stair way to heaven :) very cool illusion !!

  • Shiva Prasad

    the stairs are not stairs in real, its just a cone/ tower/ pyramid. when shot from an angle looks like stairs to eterniy… nice illusion!

    I need to appreciate the photographer for the angle, the angle covers nicely the stairs on all sides except the front and little on left


  • Awesome


    Much better than some of the stuff you have showed over the last month.

  • Muhammed Burak Sonmez

    This is cool man! I wouldn’t have a clue as to who the author may be…

  • rob

    this is just a tower cleverly built to look like some stairs to heaven with the tiers gradualy getting smaller i presume a photo from the back would look the samen as this

  • rob


  • Maria

    it is a photo-montage

  • Durvesh

    hey think I’m the first to comment
    by the way i suppose it means that “one has to travel along way before reaching heaven”

  • Durvesh

    its a-long

  • Durvesh

    spoiled my first comment

  • it looks like its bin painted on a wall

  • Red Streak

    wow that is awesome

  • I don’t know if this is a legitimate term or not … (and if it isn’t, I’m taking credit for coining it) … but I’d call this technique: “forced parallax”

  • It’s just a pyramid but the illusion was nice :)

  • Jeanette

    it is a very stratigically placed “pyramid” if you will… just look at it closely it is rather interesting to see something like this though. kudos… i give it 2 thumbs up.

  • uni anni

    It’s just a photograph of a folded paper :D

  • duncan

    @Tom; There’s no Parallax in a photograph. You need two different perspectives or motion, as I understand it.

    This would be called “Forced Perspective”.

  • Someone

    i agree with those talking about the angle of the object being shot at

  • javonte

    this is a wall painting made to look real i wish it really was real but thats too bad

  • jojo

    My guess is the 4/5 first steps are real and they’re stuck in a wall….the wall is painted or got some huge photograh with the sea and rock glued to it..

  • person

    im thinking its a forced perspective illusion. do like :D

  • Janessa

    That is just amazing! I can’t believe it looks like it’s going to heaven!!!

  • coolio

    its a pyramid shaped statue not stairs

  • lol it’s sidewalk art…..wher someone uses chalk sets, specific ones, and different shades of some colors to add the effect, because do u notice the line that is on the background that goes thru the bush and the stairs? it’s drawn ona sidewalk….

  • niranjan

    its a pyramid with jagged edges shot from an angle
    but it looks really realistic

  • bob

    its just one straight sign that looks like stairs

  • Lanney

    Just a hint… there’s a suspicious line running through the bottom half. I dunno what for.. maybe a mirror beside a mirror?

  • Somebody

    Chuck Norris Can Complete These Stairs Without Taking A Break

  • AppaloosaGirl

    It’s just block piled up vertically on top of each other, progressively getting smaller and smaller, up until the top brick is barely visible from the perspective the photo was taken.

  • notarealname

    painted statue ?

  • Julia

    i think it is a triangular statue in the shape of a pyramid . and was cracked or maybe painted for the cracks, because if you look closely , the only steps with cracks on it is the first two . id say its just a slanted pyramid type shape .

  • BJ

    its a statue. GET IT!!!!!

  • Katjune57

    this one looks so cool. i would want to see whats one the other side.

  • LD

    Excellent photoshop work.

  • sp

    looks like a staircase to heaven!

  • av

    lol thats a pyramid and made it smaller and smaller till no more plus its a point of view

  • o.i.e.

    i think he did a paper triangle standing up with a drawn stair case

  • glittergirl

    i think its a pyramid statue shot from a different angle

  • AnyD

    I vote for a solid sculpture about 2 to 3 meters high and perfectly vertical
    Also I keep hearing this old Led Zeppelin tune in my head.

  • BunnyGirl

    It’s obviously a pyramid, guys! Anyone here 11 years old? I rule!!!! BunnyGirl is in the HOOOOUUUUSE!!!!

  • Josh

    Think it’s a pyramid, only took me about 10 secs to see that