Squares and M&M’s Bulge Illusion


Visual perception begins with our retinas locating the edges of objects in the world. Downstream neural mechanisms analyze those borders and use that information to fill in the insides of objects, constructing our perception of surfaces. What happens when those borders—the fundamental fabric of our visual reality—are tweaked? Our internal representation of objects fails, and our brain’s ability to accurately represent reality no longer functions. Seemingly small mistakes lead to the very distorted perceptions of an illusory world. Like this example of Akiyoshi Kitaoka’s “Bulge” illusion, created by Mary Coffelt, Briena Heller, and Michael McCamy, in which strategically placed purple and white M&Ms distort your perception of the  checkerboard, making it bulge out.

To see the illusion disappear with a single breath, watch this video:

This entry was posted in Consciousness, Neuroscience, Optical illusions, Perception, Psychology, Science and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s