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See Inside Scientific American Mind Volume 24, Issue 1

Artists Play With Light and Shadows to Trick the Eye

Trompe l'oeil illusions challenge your perception
Outside the Box

Consummate trompe l'oeil artists make their creations jump out of the frame, sometimes literally, as in Spanish Catalan painter Pere Borrell del Caso's Escaping Criticism. Paper sculptor Calvin Nicholls pulls off the illusion by creating actual 3-D objects from small pieces of paper. He starts with a 2-D detail drawing, which becomes a pattern for all the paper pieces he will cut. Then he traces individual pieces from the drawing and transfers them to the actual paper used in the sculpture, attaching them with minute amounts of glue.

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