Apr. 17th, 2010
In the Illusion of Sex Change, by Richard Russell of Harvard University, two faces are perceived as male and female. However, rest assured that the both faces are actually versions of the same androgynous face (neither male, nor female). One face was created by increasing the contrast of the androgynous face, while the other face was created by decreasing the contrast. The face with more contrast is perceived as female, while the face with less contrast is perceived as male. The Illusion of Sex Change demonstrates that contrast is an important cue for perceiving the sex of a face, with greater contrast appearing feminine, and lesser contrast appearing masculine. This optical illusion won the prize in 2009 optical illusion contest as well.