Shady Optical Illusion: Crazy Diamonds

Watch carefully as these diamonds are being moved from the top of the sheet to the bottom and try to explain what is happening in the comments section below. Please note that there are no camera tricks or special effects used in the video.

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36 Responses to Shady Optical Illusion: Crazy Diamonds

  1. My guess is that the diamonds are all identical and have a gradient on them that's darker at the top and lighter at the bottom.

    It's the surrounding colours that fool the eyes into perceiving them as different shades.

    If you load a screen shot into an image editor and remove everything but the triangles then it becomes apparent:

    Also see this:
    http://www.colourlovers.com/blog/2008/09/10/11-co

  2. I think that there's a slight gradient (going form light at the top to dark at the bottom) in each diamond, making the diamond below seem darker because the top of a diamond is lighter than the bottom of the diamond below it.

    Hope that makes sense :)

  3. I think that there’s a slight gradient (going form light at the top to dark at the bottom) in each diamond, making the diamond below seem darker because the top of a diamond is lighter than the bottom of the diamond below it.
    Hope that makes sense :)

  4. My guess is that the diamonds are all identical and have a gradient on them that's darker at the top and lighter at the bottom.

    It's the surrounding colours that fool the eyes into perceiving them as different shades.

    If you load a screen shot into an image editor and remove everything but the triangles then it becomes apparent:

    Also see this:
    http://www.colourlovers.com/blog/2008/09/10/11-co

  5. The color of the diamonds isn't actually solid: it's a gradient, lighter on top, and darker at the bottom. Since the darker part of the higher rows are seen contrasted with the lighter part of lower rows, it looks like the higher rows are darker!

  6. The color of the diamonds isn’t actually solid: it’s a gradient, lighter on top, and darker at the bottom. Since the darker part of the higher rows are seen contrasted with the lighter part of lower rows, it looks like the higher rows are darker!

  7. It took me forever to figure out why this is interesting. I noticed the shading gradient almost unconsciously, and dismissed it. I kept trying to see something interesting in the movements.

    The most interesting "optical illusions" are based in the eye's neural behavior. They persist even when you realize what's going on. This one didn't persist long enough for me to realize it was supposed to be one.

    • Except it did persist.

      Just because you know what's going on more clearly than most optical illusions doesn't change the fact that the diamonds still look darker on the top rows.

      It's not like they suddenly all became the exact same color.

      Why? Well, I'm pretty sure the light source adds to the illusion, because I screen-dumped it into photoshop and the top rows ARE majorly darker than the bottom row in the video, even if that's not the case on the piece of paper on the table. He probably has a lamp shining more towards the lower edge of the paper, out of view of the camera.

  8. It took me forever to figure out why this is interesting. I noticed the shading gradient almost unconsciously, and dismissed it. I kept trying to see something interesting in the movements.

    The most interesting “optical illusions” are based in the eye’s neural behavior. They persist even when you realize what’s going on. This one didn’t persist long enough for me to realize it was supposed to be one.

    • Except it did persist.

      Just because you know what’s going on more clearly than most optical illusions doesn’t change the fact that the diamonds still look darker on the top rows.

      It’s not like they suddenly all became the exact same color.

      Why? Well, I’m pretty sure the light source adds to the illusion, because I screen-dumped it into photoshop and the top rows ARE majorly darker than the bottom row in the video, even if that’s not the case on the piece of paper on the table. He probably has a lamp shining more towards the lower edge of the paper, out of view of the camera.

  9. I think that the table isn´t plain, it is leaned towards the white diamonds and light comes from the front…so the the diamonds in the upper part look dark and those in the lower part look more bright. The white diamonds support this illusion and this would explain the gradient that was mentioned here so often.

  10. I think that the table isnĀ“t plain, it is leaned towards the white diamonds and light comes from the front…so the the diamonds in the upper part look dark and those in the lower part look more bright. The white diamonds support this illusion and this would explain the gradient that was mentioned here so often.

  11. i think hes a jedi. excellent perception…messing up thing (can't find the word). i would love to see this in real life.

  12. i think hes a jedi. excellent perception…messing up thing (can’t find the word). i would love to see this in real life.

  13. The light source seems to be directly above.

    The diamonds used are all the same colour, it is a shading thing. The diamonds are lighter at the top and darker at the bottom. The top row looks a lot darker due to the contrast next to the white.

    If you are short-sighted and wear glasses, try watching it after taking them off and putting it slightly out of focus. It makes it more apparent as they all look identical then.

  14. The light source seems to be directly above.

    The diamonds used are all the same colour, it is a shading thing. The diamonds are lighter at the top and darker at the bottom. The top row looks a lot darker due to the contrast next to the white.

    If you are short-sighted and wear glasses, try watching it after taking them off and putting it slightly out of focus. It makes it more apparent as they all look identical then.

  15. The explanation is only in how are eyes and brain processes colors. Color "changes" depending on its surroundings. The top diamonds are darker because they're closer to white. 2 same exact color spots will appear of different color when surrounded by light or dark color. That's why it won't work with colors (or be less visible).

  16. wow these comments are so old… and some like double posts??? anyway all the diamond shape spots are the same gradient shade from top to bottom.. its because the top of the paper under has those bright white edges showing through that cause a differential in focus

  17. because your eyes use surrounding colours (spec shades of colour in this case) to identify the coulour you are seeing, the greys are all the same colour but the line of white at the top makes it seem like the top row of diamonds is that much darker. and the line of light grey at the bottom is only slightly lighter so the diamonds above it look lighter in contrast to the diamonds against the white, and because out mind interprets the top row of grey diamonds as dark and the next to bottom row as much lighter our brain fills in the middle row as a shade between the two.

  18. It's a pretty regular trick. The diamonds are all the same color. It's just that they are darker on the bottom than they are on the top and because of the dark row at the top and the light row at the bottom, our eyes say that each row is a different color because that's what makes sense to us. However, each diamond is the same color, but lighter on the top and darker on the bottom.

  19. did you read my answer? cause you said we were all wrong yet the diamons that are white that you speak of arent diamonds, but the rest of the piece of paper and your response was very much like mine.

  20. The top and bottom of each diamond shape have a 30-40 degree angle and and a slight gradient is applied. Humans eyes will perceive the shading on the boundary lines of each diamond where it lies adjacent to another diamond as separate points and because you focus on that one part the entire thing as a whole appears as if the diamonds on top are a different color than the ones on the bottom.