TikTok is stunned that this '3D' optical illusion actually works

We love a good optical illusion here at Creative Bloq, and we've seen them come in all forms. We've seen plenty of optical illusions that fool our eyes into seeing movement where there isn't any or seeing colour changes that don't exist. 

But this one's a bit different, this optical illusion claims it can allow us to see an image in 3D – with no need for special 3D glasses. If you stare at the TikTok video below with one eye focusing on each version of the video, you should be able to see the subject appear to come out of the screen in a third image (it looks like we've got another one of our pick of favourite optical illusions).


♬ Aesthetic - Tollan Kim

Dean Jackson, AKA @beatonthebeeb, is a TikTokker who regularly shares baffling optical illusions on TikTok. In this one, he shows two videos of the same scene side by side. The videos are taken from slightly different angles, and Jackson suggests that if we can get our brains to merge them together, then we should see a 3D image appear.

It can take a while to get there. You have to look at the screen straight on so that your left eye is focused on the left image and right eye on the right image. You then need to move the screen towards you and away from you to different distances until a third image appear in the middle between the two videos.

It worked for us. We find that once the third image starts to appear, it can help to quickly blink a couple of times until you feel comfortable and natural looking at the third 3D image, otherwise we find our eyes start to water due to staring so hard. Once you've got it, it then becomes quite easy to see it, similar to a Magic Eye autostereogram image.

Jackson explains that this is because the fact that the videos are taken from slightly different angles replicates the way our eyes normally see the world around us. Our left eye and right eye give us slightly different views of the world, which our brains put together to create a 3D image. By looking at two videos of the same scene from different angles, a similar process occurs. If we work at merging the images together. 

It's a neat effect, and TikTok's loving it. "It worked! At first it was blurry but I managed to clear the image. Incredible how this is possible," one person commented on the video, which has clocked up over 80K likes and nearly 10K comments. Some people even ended up seeing four images. All the same, we think we'll stick to 3D glasses for full-length movies.

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Joseph Foley

Joe is a regular freelance journalist and editor at Creative Bloq. He writes news and features, updates buying guides and keeps track of the best equipment for creatives, from monitors to accessories and office supplies. A writer and translator, he also works as a project manager at London and Buenos Aires-based design and branding agency Hermana Creatives, where he manages a team of designers, photographers and video editors who specialise in producing photography, video content, graphic design and collaterals for the hospitality sector. He enjoys photography, particularly nature photography, wellness and he dances Argentine tango.