Mother Nature is deceptively crafty in her ways. Natural wonders, from the oceans and skies to the trees and animals (including humans), are filled with trickery. They'll have you thinking that things are one thing when, in truth, they're something else entirely. That's why we compiled an article filled with the most deceiving (and entertaining) illusions on the web. Let's see if you can figure out what these perfectly-timed photos actually captured.
Breaking News: The Sky Is Actually an Ocean
Okay, so not many people know this, but if you look carefully, the sky is actually the ocean. Yeah, shocker, right? We also thought the sky was a whole different entity, with the sun being up there and all. But the photo below leaves no doubt in our minds: the sky is just another giant ocean. What else could explain the rough waves in the sky we see here?
Okay, fine, there is nothing true about what we just said. Those clouds just look eerily similar to an ocean. Wouldn't it be neat if that were the case, though?
Those Aren't Leaves - They're Birds
Isn't this a nice picture of an ordinary tree flailing around in the open fields? Except this isn't a regular tree; it's one of those leafless trees. "What are those leaves then," you ask. Well, ask, and you shall receive an answer - those are actually birds, not leaves. Yeah, you read that right. Take a closer look at the picture. That whole tree is brimming with hundreds of birds.
By some freak coincidence of natural phenomena and clever camera angles, this photographer made all those birds look like leaves.
He's Got Quite the Strange Face - Oh Wait
Yeah, this isn't how humans look. It looks like someone got a little too excited, almost shed his human disguise, and exposed his true alien self. We're on to this guy. There's one other possible explanation: there's somebody right behind him whose face merged with his in the photo. Now, while that certainly sounds more plausible, we won't be ruling out the whole alien thing yet. Give it some thought, won't you?
Perspective is truly a strange thing. It's weird just how much it matters. You can change just a tiny little something about your perspective, and the object you were looking at might suddenly seem unrecognizable.
Think Those Trees Are on Fire? Think Again
Okay, so what we actually see here is a bunch of trees with Christmas decorations, only the trees have been covered from bottom to top with a sheet of fluffy, white snow, somehow giving off the impression that some weird, Christmas-hating grinch character came about and set them on fire. Thankfully, that isn't the case. What we're witnessing is just nature messing around with lights. Thanks for the light show, nature!
But seriously, if we saw this in person, we'd call the fire department immediately.
Eagle By Day, Pirate By Night
This statue is one of those things that seem to take on a different face the second night falls upon the city. By day, the little figure above the clock seems like an eagle — nothing strange about that, in our humble opinion. But then, when night comes, that eagle turns into a pirate. Now that's strange. The architect who designed this had a bizarre sense of aesthetics or a soft spot for pirates.
Not to say that this is a flawed statue. Quite the opposite; it's cool and inventive!
Behold - The Levitating Cat!
Now we're not usually ones to be impressed by cats. Sure, cats are cute; that much is for certain. But there's nothing really jaw-dropping about your regular old run-of-the-mill cat. This, however, isn't your typical cat. No, not at all. This is an entirely different breed of cat. This cat, ladies and gentlemen, is a floating cat. Yes, look at him, elegantly suspending himself in the air. This cat is supernatural.
Okay, so we lied a bit. This isn't really a floating cat. It's just a cat lying on a sofa. He is, however, positioned in such a way that he looks as though he were floating.
Now That's What We Call a Dirt Bike
The photo below is a classic case of something taking itself just a little too literally. When people say "dirt bikes," they usually don't mean "a bike so contaminated with dirt that you pretty much can't see its front wheel." That is, however, precisely what we got in this case. We don't think we've ever seen a bike with a front wheel so dirty. It's verging on invisible; that's how dirty it is.
It's safe to say this person got in a lot of dirt bike practice on the day they snapped this photo.
We Almost Called Animal Protective Services on This One
This bird may look like it's being boiled alive, but that's just an illusion. The person who posted this picture isn't trying to make himself a bowl of bird stew; he would never do that to his beloved pet bird. This little birdie is actually just getting a bath, but because he likes to move around so much while bathing, it looks like he's being boiled alive. This brings us to our next question: Why did this person choose to bathe his bird in a kitchen pot?
Maybe pots are really good for bathing birds or something? We have absolutely no clue. We just know that this bird wasn't boiled!
He Skipped Leg Day at the Gym One Too Many Times
This next picture should serve as a reminder (or, one should say, an ominous prophecy) to all those who think that skipping leg day is okay. Let us be the first to tell you that isn't okay, and you may end up like this man if you keep up your lazy ways. So go hit that gym and make sure you give those legs a good pumping or two.
Okay, so we'll be real for a second: this guy's physique isn't the result of skipping leg day. It's just a weird optical illusion caused by the young kid he's hugging. And we were just joking before - our favorite kind of workout is sitting on the couch, so who are we to judge if you skip leg day?
Hey Dude, We Love Your Hairdo
This picture may look like a photo of a guy hanging on to dear life as he slowly sinks and drowns in the icy waters of some unnamed lake, but it's a lot more wholesome than that. It's actually just a picture of a man holding some weird, ball-ish-looking sea creature. But we wouldn't blame you if you were pretty startled when you first saw this picture. We were, too!
But, as it turns out, nobody was in danger. It was just another case of our mind playing tricks on us, which, at this rate, maybe should become a cause for concern in and of itself.
The Key to Being a Good Snowboarder? Become One With the Snow
Learning how to ski is pretty tough. There are a lot of technical movements that are really hard to get right, and explaining each and every one of them and breaking them down to the most minute details may help some people figure it out, but others may just find it a bit overwhelming. That's why a lot of people who are learning how to ski are told to just "feel it out."
This person, however, may have taken those words of advice just a tiny bit too far, given that he's pretty much become one with the snowy environment of the slope.
Someone Needs to Tell This Neighborhood There's a Tsunami Coming
Look, we don't want to spoil anybody's mood or anything like that, but it seems to us that a massive wave is about to come crashing down on that town and cause total and absolute carnage. We think that's worth putting out there, even if it spoils a few moods. Sometimes the truth just isn't pretty. Luckily, however, that isn't the truth. It only looks as though there's a tsunami.
We're not quite sure what was up with the sky on the fateful day this picture was taken, but something was strange about it.
Dragon's Sure Have Changed Since the Old Days
We don't know about you, but this isn't how we imagined dragons would look. All those representations of dragons in High Fantasy movies and books really blew things out of proportion, didn't they? Where are the wings? Where are the scales? Where is all the flying? Where is the dragon's simultaneously scary and graceful look? Seriously, dragons these days aren't what they used to be.
Okay, so this isn't a dragon. It's not even a cat spitting fire. It's just a cat yawning in front of an (admittedly extraordinary) sun-filled cloud. You've got to appreciate the artistry of the photographer, though.
Rated-R for "Reality Is Different Than It Seems"
Before you obstruct your kids' view of the screen, we'd like to clarify that this isn't actually a picture featuring a behind. Nope, this picture is as safe for work as work-safe gets. It's just that the guy in the front's arm looks like a butt, and it happens to be right over the woman's rear. It's a weird optical illusion that had us checking if anyone else was staring at our screens.
On a completely unrelated note, this is your sign to go on a fishing trip with your friends and have a cool party on the riverbank. Look at how much fun they're having. That could be you.
Nothing to See Here, Just an Ordinary Caterpillar
Oh, this is nice. Just an ordinary picture of a common caterpillar. Yup, nothing strange about this photo at all. Just your run-of-the-mill caterpillar pic. Except for a tiny thing: that isn't a caterpillar. Yeah, that's a bunch of birds lined up together! See the beaks right below their cute, red heads? Yeah, this one definitely fooled us for a bit. Mother Nature's quite the trickster these days, isn't she?
This picture gets a lot more wholesome the more you look at it. Spiky, slimy caterpillar? Yuck. A bunch of birds on a branch? Too cute!
How'd the Kid Come Out Full Human if His Mom's a Centaur?
There's nothing like a little bit of quality family time. You know, gathering around the TV, watching a nice, family-friendly, wholesome show, and just soaking in all those positive familial vibes. This picture perfectly showcases just that - so what if the family in question is made up of a centaur of some sort? That doesn't mean this family isn't any less legitimate than your regular, old, centaur-less family.
Okay, but, in truth, there's actually no centaur. That's just the mother of the family lying next to the dog in such a way that it seems as though the two are conjoined.
Wait, This Isn't What It Looks Like!
Before you call these young gentlemen's respective significant others, it might be worth mentioning that this photo isn't exactly what it seems. Sure, it may look as though the man in the red is putting his hand down where it doesn't belong, but we promise that isn't the case. What's going on is that his friend, the one in the black jacket, has got a red undershirt, and his belly's showing.
The combination of these factors, coupled with the cameraman's perspective, makes it look like the guy in the red button-down is having trouble keeping his hands to himself.
This What You Can Achieve With Enough Meditation Practice
You may not like it, but this is what peak yoga performance looks like. With enough practice and dedication, you, too, can levitate above the ground as if you were some kind of helicopter-human hybrid. Okay, so we're not sure that's true, and we have some bad news for those that got excited: while this picture seems like a photo of a woman floating over the sidewalk, that isn't actually what's going on.
The way the photographed woman's dress draped onto the sidewalk, combined with the perfectly placed dark spot on the concrete, makes it look like she's floating, and you can see her shadow. But it's all an illusion; nothing supernatural to see here.
Wow, We Didn't Know Soccer Players Are so Flexible
Oh no. It seems as though these two professional athletes seem to have something completely off when it comes to their bone structure. Just look at those arms; they're bending way beyond the standard limits of human capability. There's only one possible explanation for this: these two players are actually genetic mutants or aliens from Mars. Either that or they were just awkwardly and deceptively photographed. Spoiler alert: it's the last option.
There's actually another player behind the two, and he's the one that's making it look as though the two players in the front were blessed with supernatural arm-stretching abilities.
Some people share a special kind of bond, a special kind of connection. Usually, that connection isn't physical in the full sense of the word, but sometimes it is. This is as true for dogs as it is for regular people, as seen in this picture. Those dogs seem, to the naked eye, totally conjoined. Reality isn't always as it seems, though. These two dogs aren't really physically connected.
No, no, it's just the way the dogs are piled up on top of each other that makes it seem that way. If we're not mistaken, it seems that there are actually three dogs in this picture. Who would've thought?
Talk About Sailing to the Moon
This cruise ship is going to one place and one place only - outer space, baby! Yup, you heard that right; this ocean cruiser is going to the final frontier, the great unknown; it'll be plowing through the emptiness of space in no time. Actually, on second thought, no, it won't, because that cruise ship isn't actually levitating. Sorry to ruin your excitement, but that's just a regular old ship that seems to be floating due to all the mist.
This has got to be one of our favorite optical illusions. It has a certain mystical quality to it. It just gives off an ethereal vibe that we really dig.
The Guy on the Right Is Mr. Elastic
Won't you take a look at that? That guy on the right is stretching his arms out way beyond the limits of human capability. Isn't that something? It seems that somebody got a generous helping of superpowers of the stretchy variety. Maybe he's none other than Mr. Elastic himself. Okay, fine, there's no superhero here. What's actually going on in this picture is quite unremarkable, but the results had everyone doing a double-take.
The guy on our right is wrapping his arm around his partner while the man in the front puts his arm on his partner's shoulder. Their arms just happened to blend, creating the illusion that the man in the back had a super long arm.
Somebody Better Get That Poor Dog Out of There
Oh, no! Quick, somebody, please call someone! That dog is trapped inside a bubble! How did they get him inside that thing? Did they shrink him down to that size, or is that bubble just dog-sized? We would have had so many questions about this picture if we didn't already know that this photo is the result of clever photography trickery. Seriously, we would be stressing about the whole dog in a bubble thing.
It's amazing just how clever a photograph can get and how easy it is to fool an innocent spectator into believing, even if just for a brief moment, something as silly as a dog stuck in a bubble.
People Are Really Out Here Skipping Arm Day
Okay, so skipping leg day every once in a while? Sure, we get that (even though we just warned you guys of the possible implications of skipping leg day too much). But skipping arm day? That's just unacceptable. This grown man has the arms of a toddler, and that's just weird. Thankfully, those aren't his real arms. Those are someone else's arms and, therefore, someone else's problem. That person just happens to be wearing an identical shirt.
It's funny just how silly our brains can be. It took us quite a bit of staring at this picture to really convince ourselves that those tiny arms aren't real.
New Dog Breed Just Dropped
Okay, this isn't a new breed of dog. It's just two dogs juxtaposed in such a way that they look like one genetically mutated, albeit cute, dog. Like, there's no question that the more you look at this dog, the creepier he seems to get, and yet there's something undeniably cute about him, even if he is nature's mistake. Thankfully, he isn't. He's just two dogs standing next to each other.
There's also another thing about this picture we'd like to point out - and that's just how small and adorable the smaller dog is. Look at him! He's just so cute!
Is This Sesame Street?
If you watched Sesame Street growing up, or have children in your life who watch it now, then you probably know which character this looks like. At first glance, the picture below definitely looks like it's of Sesame Street's Bert. But, sadly for those die-hard fans out there, this isn't Bert at all. In fact, this isn't even Sesame Street. It's just a child riding on an adult's shoulders.
The duo's yellow shirt and other colors just coincidentally made them look like Bert.
That Cat Isn't Actually as Large and in Charge as He Seems
When a cute cat meets an old-school table that fits the color pattern of his fur to a tee, you know you're going to get a good picture. Somehow, the way this cat sat on the table in front of the Christmas tree made it seem like this cat was the real-life incarnation of the Ancient Egyptian Sphinx statue or something. Just look at this guy; he's absolutely gigantic!
In reality, the cat is regular-sized. It's just that the table upon which the cat sat looks more like a rug, making the cat seem huge in comparison to the Christmas tree. Oh, perspective, you tricky devil.
This Cat Clearly Has an Evil Plan to Conquer the World
Look, we're not ones to make severe and critical judgments based on first impressions, especially regarding cats, but look at this guy. He looks like the villain in the new Marvel movie. He's literally balanced on a floating plastic bucket (or whatever that weird contraption is). Suppose that doesn't scream evil intentions and diabolical plans that include world domination. We just hope he'll show us some mercy.
Luckily, that's just how it looks. This little guy isn't actually balanced on a levitating bucket. There's just a dark stain right beside the bucket that looks like its shadow.
Don't Interrupt His Reading!
Okay, picture this goofy scenario: you're on the bus. You're minding your own business, doing whatever it is you're doing, when, perhaps, you get a phone call. Ooh, cool! Who could that be? It's your old friend. You haven't talked in ages. You start shooting the breeze. Maybe your sense of volume isn't as razor-sharp as it could be. That's when this guy right here turns around to you with that disgruntled look on his face.
That's exactly what we believe happened right before this photograph was taken. Just kidding. The dog isn't actually reading that book. He was just positioned in the right place at the right time.
Camouflage Sandwiches Are a Thing Now
Let's play a little game of spot the sandwich. It's one of our favorite games, and it's really simple, too. All you have to do is look at this photo and tell us where and if you see a sandwich. We'll let you in on a little secret: it's definitely there, and it's on the left side of the photo. Now, where on Earth could that sandwich be? We have no clue!
Hopefully, you've found the sandwich by now. We're not sure what the person who made it did to it, but somehow that sandwich's almost invisible. We have got to get the recipe for that.
These Guys Are Acting as if They Won Something
Oh, wait. They did win something. It's just that the prize is pretty much invisible. We're not quite sure why the production team that was responsible for the creation of this prize went ahead and made their prestigious prize invisible, but that's exactly what they did. On the flip side, it is kind of cool that they did that. Like, imagine winning an invisible prize - would you hang it on your wall for nobody to see?
You can't even say that this is a case of the prize blending in with the background - that prize could blend into pretty much any and all colors.
The First Invisible Car
Reflective surfaces are pretty weird. They have this strange habit of, well, reflecting, and that can cause all kinds of problems for us. Thankfully, most of those problems are strictly restricted to the optic realm, meaning that they aren't really problems, only things that seem weird or troublesome. This case, for instance, is a case of a reflective surface making something disappear and that something is actually a car.
What's happening here is that the car door is reflecting the house on the other side of the street, making it seem as though there is a house where there actually is a car.
Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures
Soccer is a brutal game depending on where you're from. Sometimes, you've just got to do whatever it takes to win, and it seems as though the gentleman in the blue shirt is doing just that, even if that means damaging the integrity of the beautiful game of soccer. We're sure that the guy in the red understands despite the hell he's going through in this picture.
Okay, so we're pretty sure this is just another optical illusion, and that guy in the red isn't actually taking a fist into his behind. Then again, you can't ever be truly sure.
That Truck's Logo Looks Eerily Realistic
This is definitely one of those cases where reality hands you an amazing idea on a silver platter, and the only job you have is to make sure that idea materializes. We're not sure which company's the proud owner of that truck, but it should definitely consider incorporating that cute critter into its company logo. Just look at him; he fits the design of that truck perfectly!
So, to sum things up, this little ritter should become Northern California Shredding's mascot. Unfortunately, that probably won't happen. But we all know that it should happen, and maybe that's good enough.
The Alien Invasion Has Officially Begun
This doesn't look like something that was naturally created upon this green Earth. It just has that extra-terrestrial vibe to it, that "I was sucked into a wormhole and somehow found myself among humans" vibe to it, if you know what we mean, But this isn't an alien. Far from it, This, for all intents and purposes, is just an extremely creepy close-up of a bird drinking water. That's all.
Yet, it's definitely one of those pictures that still seem creepy even after you learn what's really going on with them. That just doesn't look like a bird's mouth. It just doesn't.
The Shadow Was Like, "I've Had It, I'm Going the Other Way"
Don't you hate it when you're hell-bent on going one way, but your shadow decides to disregard your intentions and go the opposite direction? Yeah, it's so annoying when that happens. This plane knows what we're talking about, given that his shadow is flying in the other direction. It's said that once your shadow leaves you, you're never truly yourself, that is, until you find it, capture it, and reattach it to your person.
Okay, so we'll be real for a second; the plane's shadow didn't really set itself apart from the actual plane. It's just that there's a plane even higher above, casting a totally different shadow.
The Perfect Camouflage (as Long as He Doesn't Move an Inch)
If there's one establishment that should know how to camouflage it's the army. That's just the way it is; the army (well, ancient armies, to be exact) pretty much invented the whole advent of camouflaging, and modern armies are the driving force in advancing and perfecting camouflage technology. That's why this soldier perfectly blending into his environment shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone, really. Nevertheless, it's still pretty impressive.
What's impressive about this particular instance of camouflage is that the soldier in question managed to blend into not one, nor two, but three different types of terrain all at once.
So How Does This Two-Headed Cat Do His Business?
This is definitely one of the weirdest cat-like creatures we've ever seen. We've heard of conjoined cats, but never would we have thought that we'd see them quite like this; these cats don't just look conjoined, they're almost symmetrical in their build, and they're so long, too! Thankfully, there's an explanation as to why they seem that way - these cats aren't actually conjoined; they're just positioned confusingly.
Now, though these aren't actually conjoined cats, which is a bit disappointing, we do have to admit that there's one thing nobody will ever be able to take from these creatures - their cuteness.
Introducing the World's First Bodybuilder Dog
Dear Lord, this dog is absolutely jacked! He's been hitting the gym non-stop. Who's the canine that broke his poor, doggy heart to make him go so hard at the gym? Seriously this dog could mess us up if it wanted to. Just look at those muscles. Really, take a look at those muscles; take a good, close look at them because they're fake! Those aren't actually huge dog biceps!
What's actually going on here is that the dog's 'spine' is his tail and behind, while his 'arms' are actually just his back legs. Yeah, this is just a picture of a regular dog shot from behind him.
New York City Never Looked Better
There's nothing like visiting a big city, finding a tall building or hilltop, and staring out at the skyline from high up. And one of our favorite places to do skyline watching has got to be the Big Apple, also known as New York City. Just take one look at the skyline photo below, and you'll quickly understand why. Okay, fine, that's not NYC. In fact, it's not even buildings.
It's just a bunch of dirty old radiators tricking us at first glance.