Big Man on the Bridge



I know you are familiar with this picture of workers on the Brooklyn Bridge, taken in 1914 by Eugene de Salignac for the city of New York. But wait... why is the guy on the right so much bigger than the others? He's not. Rob at the What Is It? Blog altered the picture to make it an optical illusion!
A few weeks ago I saw this old picture on the web of the Brooklyn Bridge painters and thought it was perfect for the classic perspective optical illusion, I made an exact copy of the person on the left of the photo and placed it on the right.

Pretty neat, wouldn't you say? -Thanks, Rob!

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This is stupid. He IS too big, relative to his spatial positioning. None of the other humans are 5 grid squares tall. Don't think you can rightly call it an optical illusion if it's a manipulated photograph like this.... That's just your eye telling you something isn't right with perspective and scale.
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The only thing neater than optical illusions of this sort is the reasons why they occur. IMHO. But it is as Tomorrow's Bad Seeds sing in one of their songs "Mystery is magic among most men". Take away the mystery and the magic goes with it. Things aren't as pretty when they are understood. That we can be so easily fooled is both neat and horrifying when one considers how readily we judge and convict each other. Believe it or not, people will look at this, clearly see the illusion and subsequently claim that they have not seen the illusion. That is another type of illusion called self-deception for the sake of preserving confidence in ones ability to pass judgement. Experimenters have devised all manner of ways to upset our capacities to judge, in order to reveal our inner workings and shake our confidence. Mostly, it doesn't do anything but temporarily entertain us. So much of this stuff should theoretically halt all progress and cause the whole human race to collapse in a state of existential anxiety over what we are and what the right course of action is. But that sounds passe, depressing and idealistic, I'll just click next and assume my distorted perception is something I can ignore.
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"But wait… why is the guy on the right so much bigger than the others? He’s not."...yes he is. he is only the same size as his mirror image on left bottom.
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