Sideway Face Optical Illusion


Here’s a disturbing photo-manipulation that has been circulating Facebook for some time now. I couldn’t ignore all the requests for it to be featured no more. It’s like more than a dozen of you have submitted it to me over the last week. At first I wasn’t that impressed, but as I kept re-checking the pic each time someone re-sent it to me, finally have I seen the illusion! Even-though this photo has been heavily manipulated, the illusion stands perfect! So, what do you make of it? Do you see the man standing sideways (profile), or do you see it as a partial frontal shot (a portrait)? It works both ways! Perhaps them police officers in charge of taking mug-shots of criminals could re-think their practice and go with this new approach to save film :D Something similar we have already featured before, but this one works much better, I think! BTW another take on this illusion can be seen inside this article (if you read this off of homepage).

  • eee efff geee

    Look like picasso

  • joe

    maybe it’s because I’m a portrait artist, or maybe people are just easily impressed and like to circulate things on facebook, but these don’t really look convincing enough as profile shots to make for a compelling image. The lower one just looks weird due to the eye obviously being shopped in to an otherwise normal photo, and in that regard it doesn’t really work as a profile or straight on shot.

  • thoughtbubbles

    when you look at it up close it doesn’t work but of you look at it from far away i totally got confused.

  • diane

    Cool ♥

  • Dolphin

    Cool, interesting to look at.

  • patti

    it looks like ted moseby from how I met your mother

  • Mary

    My initial reaction was Wow, That does my head in. The first one works better for me.

  • Dave

    Very clever!

  • ron


  • caity

    LOL that is soooo awesome!!!!

  • Doesn’t work for me. Studied it for awhile and just looks like some photoshop cropping…

  • Shinichi888

    Very nice

  • Devam
  • z2d4th

    its called Siamese twins

  • Chenoa Zephyra

    Love it ;)

  • Fig

    Hmmm, if they would cap the photo at the neckline, it would be more believable. They shoulders give it away that it is the frontal not profile. Still worthy illusion.

  • jacob

    Cool :-)


    Nice, real nice

  • the nose is the give away more impressed with the first picture has it not been photoshopped other then deleating part of the nose

  • Booker

    Quite good, can see the idea but in both cases the nose is definitley wrong – needs more work to make it really a good illusion.

  • mycaricature

    love the top one, great effect

  • Dave

    I was looking at it for about ten seconds, looked away, then looked back, and saw the face to the side instead of head-on. Kinda blew my mind a little. The second one is not as effective, though.

  • Gregory Goldsmith

    The nose still shows a frontal view. Otherwise pretty good.

  • Yuriy

    are they mutants? :)

  • Todd

    I don’t buy it either. It is an interesting concept but these images are not well crafted enough to even be called an illusion, in my eye.

    It’s true you can pick out features of both profile and straight on shots, but they are just that: either/or. In order to achieve the “duality” of being able to realize the image in both directions, the facial features all must be able to fit into both worlds. They need to be something more than just a “pasted on eyeball.” As it is now, it just looks like a weird Picasso effect, like somebody else mentioned here.

  • Jules

    I did the same some time ago, not only the head but the upper body.
    You can see it on my Flickr account:

  • Marvin

    Very nice job here definitely plays tricks on the mind. Very convincing to me once you stare at it for a while.

  • Nicole

    I like the first picture. The second one just photoshoped from two pictures with the turned eye and nose.
    But thumbs up for the first one.

  • Rachel

    This is pretty much the essence of cubism, so it deserve good marks, even if it isn’t illusionistic.

    (There were cubists other than Picasso, as I’m sure you all know.)

  • A

    I dont like the second one. Here is an easy way to see the first one. squint your eyes and everything becomes clear.

  • Here’s the artist’s official Flickr page, along with more of the images:

  • Leslie

    Very Picasso like but way creepier ! I’m loving this

  • Webdesigneria

    Great thanks,5 stars

  • GenCat


  • wow truly awesome

  • Mesha

    I caught both of then right of the bar when I made my /vision/eyes fuzzy and I fesse it right away… Really cool

  • Olivia

    Not impressed.

  • Jacob

    what’s really cool to me personally is that i saw the sideways guy first and it took mem like 5 minutes to see him standing straight when i feel like most people would see it the other way around…

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