I guess you can trace my interest in these type of pictures back to freshman year at UC Davis when I happened upon a dude selling posters in front of the Coffee House early one day Fall quarter 1987. I ended up purchasing my first Salvador Dali print. At the time I fancied myself an open-minded adventurer who was eager to push the envelope and explore the infinite possibilities of normal human perception by any and all available means. In other words, I was eighteen years old and away from home for the first time in my life. I proudly decorated my dorm room with that poster — among others which included Jessica Rabbitt and Brian Bosworth. It was the eighties and I had horrible taste, so sue me.
A few months later a friend of mine turned me on the works of MC Escher. I couldn’t believe what I was supposed to be seeing. Hours seemed to tick on by as my mind struggled mightily with what my eyes were telling it they saw. Throwing more fuel on the fire in my brain was my collection of Where’s Waldo books and their innate ability to occupy chunks of my precious time. (I would venture to guess that that was probably the first time that Escher has been mentioned in the same paragraph as Waldo).
Spring quarter later that school year brought with it my first ever Whole Earth Festival on campus. The three day celebration of Mother Earth, natural foods, hippie music, Birkenstocks, patchouli oil, and sweat was so much fun for me and my friends that I almost dropped out of school so that I could follow the Grateful Dead around on tour. No, not really, but I did buy this super-groovy tie-dyed t-shirt that had what looked like a skull on it but upon closer inspection was actually a drawing of a woman looking at her reflection in the mirror. The picture is called Vanity and it’s posted above. Pretty crazy, eh? (The Canadian in me couldn’t resist not saying eh).
Fast-forward to the current year of (practice with me) twenty ten and I discovered these three pieces of eyeball ingested brain candy while checking my mail on Yahoo. I decided to post a few of my favorite illusions here for you to trip out on. Enjoy.