Forced Perspective


Forced perspective is a photography technique that makes objects look smaller or larger than they really are through optical illusion. It manipulates our visual perception through the use of scaled objects. For our TOK project, we had to take photos demonstrating forced perception. As we were working on our project, we found some difficulties. We realized that the best forced perspective photos were taken in open areas with no other objects, since this way the objects wouldn’t interfere in the picture and reveal the actual size. Both of our photos were taken in the loft during class.

Our first photograph is taken of Nofar sitting on the floor and a giant foot stepping on her. To achieve this forced perspective photo, Nofar sat on the ground 5 meters from and I lifted up my foot. Shani took the photo by lying down on the floor and positioning the camera so that my foot was right above her head. In order to make the photo seem more realistic, Nofar was gazing up as if looking at my shoe. However, this photograph was taken in a class room. The surrounding objects, such as the walls, the curtains and the persons legs behind Nofar, reveal the true size of Nofar and the shoe.

Our second photograph is taken of Shani supposedly sitting on a hand. To create this forced perspective photograph, I held out my hand as if I were holding something and Shani was sitting about 5 meters from my hand. Nofar took the picture and positioned it so that my hand was below Shani, as if she were sitting on my hand. However, this photograph was also taken in a classroom and therefore the surrounding objects, such as Mr. Redlich behind Shani, reveal the actual size.

As an example of a better forced perception photograph is the one of above of myself taken in Egypt. To create this photo, I lifted my hand as if i were holding on to something and the pyramids were behind me. The photographer positioned the camera so that it seemed like I was holding onto a pyramid. The photo is taken in a desert, which is an open area without any objects to reveal the true size.

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