Flashed Face Distortion Effect

Accidents don’t have to necessarily be a bad thing. Such is the case when University of Queensland undergrad Sean Murphy accidentally discovered what has come to be known as flashed face distortion. The phenomena occurs when two side-by-side head shots are perfectly aligned at the eyes and the viewer focuses on negative space between the two images. As the eyes focus on the center point, the faces begin to appear distorted and deformed. See this fascinating illusion for yourself:

After Pretty Girls Turn Ugly went viral, racking up over six million views, a second video demonstrating the effect was made, this time using otherwise stunning pictures of celebrities. Check out Shocking Illusion – Pretty Celebrities Turn Ugly:

While Murphy may have become sidetracked while researching images for a paper, his wandering attention really payed off.

flashed face distortion effect

Murphy’s findings even won him second prize in the Best Illusion of the Year Contest: 2012. Very cool!

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