The Leica Picture of the Year is a hilarious optical illusion

Leica is one of the most famous – and stylish – camera brands in the world. Its devices don't come cheap, but they come with a mark of quality thanks to the company's prestige. In the right hands, the best Leica cameras can take some stunning photos – and the Leica Picture of the Year award is designed to honour the very best.

Rather than new photography, the award celebrates the life's work of photographers inducted into the Leica Hall of Fame. And this year's winning photo, taken by Elliott Erwitt in 2000, is up there with the best animal optical illusions.

Black-and-white photo of two dogs on a doorstep, with one sitting on a person's lap

The winning photo by Elliott Erwitt (Image credit: Leica)

Taken in New York City in 2000, the black-and-white photo appears to show two dogs sitting on a doorstep. One of the dogs looks normal, whereas the other features a human torso, arms and legs. Look a little closer, and it becomes (slightly) clear that the second dog is sitting on its owner's lap.

In a blog post, Leica describes Erwitt, born in 1928, as "one of the most famous photographers worldwide." Describing the photo, Erwitt says, "Many of the dogs pictured must have looked appealing to me in their exotic settings, other dogs were appealing in reasonably well-composed photographs and some others seemed to transcend their easy obvious charm and to have allegorical connotations to us humans and our human condition... And dogs make easy, uncomplaining targets without the self-conscious hang-ups and possible objections of humans caught on film."

From this three-headed deer to that infamous rotating horse, we'e seen plenty of adorable and mind-boggling animal optical illusions in recent months. For a roundup of all the best mind-benders we've seen lately (animal or otherwise), take a look at our guide to the best optical illusions.

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Daniel John
Senior News Editor

Daniel John is Senior News Editor at Creative Bloq. He reports on the worlds of art, design, branding and lifestyle tech (which often translates to tech made by Apple). He joined in 2020 after working in copywriting and digital marketing with brands including ITV, NBC, Channel 4 and more.