10 Amazing Colour Optical Illusions That Can Trick Your Eye

Colour Optical Illusions

Do you want to find the best colour optical illusions that will leave you dazed and mind confused? This article will not just tell you about the 10 best colour changing optical illusions but will also explain you the secrets of how different colour optical illusion works. 

Colour is an illusion. Light and its spectrum exist in the physical world, but the colour is all in your mind. The Optical illusions show us that colour can be very tricky as they can use colour, light, and patterns to create images that can be deceptive or misleading to our brains. Thus, creating a perception that in reality, does not match the true image. In other words, your perception of an illusion has more to do with how your brain works — and less to do with the optics of your eye. There is no magic involved, no strings attached, its all in your head that confusing you and drawing different patterns inside your mind.

10 Amazing Colour Optical Illusions:

There are hundreds of colour optical illusions available today, but to save you time on research, we filtered the 10 best images of optical illusions for you. All these optical illusions will amaze you and show how colour can trick the eye.

Here are 10 of the most incredible colour optical illusions you will find:

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10. Leaning Tower of Pisa Optical Illusion

Colour Optical Illusions

The optical illusion of Leaning Tower of Pisa is very simple but at the same time very striking illusion.The above image show two identical images of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Although, both the above images are duplicates, one has the impression that the tower on the right leans more, as if photographed from a different angle.

Obviously, the two towers are identical! So how can they lean? The reason for this is because our visual system treats the two images as if part of a single scene. Normally, if two adjacent towers rise at the same angle, their image outlines converge as they recede from view due to perspective, and this is taken into account by the visual system.

So when confronted with two towers whose corresponding outlines are parallel, the visual system assumes they must be diverging as they rise from view, and this is what we see. In simple terms, the tower on the right side looks leaning, but it isn’t, it’s just a consequence of camera position relative to the center combined with the laws of perspective.

9. Titchener Circles

Colour Optical Illusions

Observe the two sets of circles above. Which of the orange circles is larger?

You may be surprised to find out that both the orange circle are exactly the same size.

Really?? You bet.

This optical illusion occurs because of the size of the surrounding blue circles and their relative distance from the central orange circle. These optical adjustments cause the brain’s visual perception system to distort the relative size of the inner circles.

The two orange circles appear to be different sizes, but they are the same. The one on the left appears larger because of its context within the blue outlined circle. Regardless of relative size, if the surrounding blue circles are closer to the central orange circle, the orange central circle appears larger and if the surrounding blue circles are far away, the central orange circle appears smaller.

8. Zöllner illusion

Colour Optical Illusions

The Zöllner illusion is a classic optical illusion where a pattern surrounding parallel lines creates the illusion that they are not parallel. The Zöllner image is composed of a series of black parallel, diagonal lines intersected by a number of short horizontal and vertical bars over a white background.

The black parallel, diagonal lines appear not to be parallel at all; rather, they appear to converge and diverge from each other. There is an explanation for Zöllner illusion.

The shorter black lines are at an angle to the long lines, and this angle helps to create the impression that one end of the longer lines is nearer to the viewer than the other end, thus creating an illusion that parallel lines are not parallel to each other.

Scientists hypothesize this effect as a result of acute-angle expansion.

7. Spinning Silhouette

colour optical illusions
Clockwise or Counterclockwise. Left or Right?

At first glance, the spinning lady appears to be circling in a clockwise motion. If you look at the spinning dancer long enough – the lady will appear to change direction and start spinning counter-clockwise.

It is pretty amazing when you see the switch happen. If you see the dancer spinning clockwise, the story goes, you are using more of your right brain, and if you see it moving counterclockwise, you are more of a left-brained person.

The Truth about the Spinning silhouette is that it’s just simply an optical illusion, that has been long studied by scientists to learn more about how vision works. This silhouette image doesn’t have any depth cues (the ability to perceive depth). As a result, your eyes will sometimes see the dancer standing on her left leg and spinning to the right.

And sometimes they will perceive her as standing on her right leg and spinning to the left. Most people, if they stare at the image long enough, will eventually see her turn both ways.

6. Peripheral drift illusion

Colour Optical Illusions

Despite the swirling and twirling you think you see, this is a completely still image. It’s an example of peripheral drift illusion, which refers to an optical illusion that our brains perceive as moving but, in reality, is still.

The human brain, although highly sophisticated, processes information in a very basic way. As we move our eyes from left to right, we pick up visual cues both directly and in our peripheral vision that our brain then processes piece-by-piece – not continuously.

5. A & B Checker Shadow Illusion

Colour Optical Illusions

Probably one of the most unbelievable illusions. This optical illusion image depicts a checkerboard with light and dark squares (similar to chess board), partly shadowed by a green circular object.

Take a look at this checkerboard, and at squares A and B. They’re different shades, right?

Nope.  They are exactly the same colour and shade. The optical illusion is that the area labeled “A” appears to be a darker colour than the area labeled “B”. However, in reality, the squares marked “A” and “B” are the same shade of gray.

This famous illusion was produced by Edward Adelson, a professor of vision science at MIT. According to him, the checker shadow effect involves how our visual system distorts external reality as a way to compensate for how things should look under situations of shadow and local contrast.

To verify this, you can open the illusion in an image editing program, like Adobe Photoshop and use the eyedropper tool to verify that the colours are the same.

4. Hering illusion

The Hering illusion is one of the geometrical-optical illusions and was discovered by the German physiologist Ewald Hering in 1861. When two straight and parallel lines are presented in front of radial background (like the spokes of a bicycle), the lines appear as if they were bowed outwards.

This illusion tricks us into thinking we are moving forward, and thus, switches on our future-seeing abilities. Since we aren’t actually moving and the figure is static, we misperceive the straight lines as curved ones.

Illusions such as these occur when our brains attempt to perceive the future, and those perceptions don’t match reality.

3. Rotating Square Illusions

At first, this optical illusion picture may be hard to see. But if you begin to scan back and forth across the image you will notice that the squares in your periphery begin to rotate.

As soon as your eyes stop moving, however, the rotation will stop. Reason??

This square isn’t actually rotating. Here’s why.

If you watch this illusion, you will see a rotating square rocking back and forth, when in fact there is no rotating square or moving lines. What’s happening is that these little square — are rotating on themselves and creating what are called local motion signals that are detected by our visual system.

Our neurons then integrate these local motion signals, and that integration can lead to the experience of a rotating square, which actually isn’t there.

2. Static Motion Illusion

Colour Optical Illusions

Is the above image moving or static?? I bet, on the first look, you’ll definitely notice the above image and the blue circles inside them moving (left to right, right to left).

But in reality, the image really is static. Notice that when you look at any individual blue circle dead on, it will stop moving. This powerful optical illusion is derived from interacting colour contrasts and shape positions within the image.

This type of colour optical illusion in which a static image appears to be moving due to the cognitive effects of interacting colour contrasts and shape position is perceived when images are displayed in succession at a specific frame rate such as in a movie.

1. Turning the Table Illusion

Colour Optical Illusions

Colour Optical Illusions

Look at the two tables on the top image? You’ll see a green and a red table – but most importantly you’ll notice that both the tables are of different shape.


Almost unbelievably, Nope! Both the table (green and red) are identical in shape and size to each other. You can confirm this by tracing perpendicular and horizontal (parallelograms) lines on to each other and measure their length.

The length of both (blue and yellow) parallelograms tracing lines are same as shown in the image below. This illusion arises from our inability to avoid making three-dimensional interpretations of the drawings, according to which the identical parallelograms would represent very different shapes because of perspective foreshortening.

The turned tables colour optical illusions is just an example of the different parts of your mind disagreeing about what they see – is it a long thin table, or is it a fat square one? With different parts of your brain putting their own interpretation on it.

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