Technically speaking, anamorphosis is a distorted projection or perspective requiring the viewer to use special devices or occupy a specific vantage point to reconstitute the image. In other words, these illusions can only be viewed from certain angles. Continue reading to see eighteen real-life examples.

There are two main types of anamorphosis: perspective (oblique) and mirror (catoptric). Examples of perspectival anamorphosis date to the early Renaissance (fifteenth century). Examples of mirror anamorphosis were first created in the late Renaissance (sixteenth century). With mirror anamorphosis, a conical or cylindrical mirror is placed on the drawing or painting to transform a flat distorted image into a three-dimensional picture that can be viewed from many angles.