Different objects or images all have their own personal meaning to an individual. When designing new content, it is important that thought is given to making sure the content will have a lasting impact for those who view it.

The Rorschach tests commonly known as Ink Blot tests are a good example of how one image can be viewed differently. There are ten cards in total which all have an array of answers and different responses. They are almost like optical illusions where two different objects can be seen. Below is a sample of a cards used in the test.

Inkblot cards

The Portfolio team reviewed the cards and explained what they saw…

Card I – Bat, Butterfly, Moth

The most popular answer for this picture is a bat due to the picture looking like wings and the colour being black. However other answers have been a butterfly or moth. I’m sure if colour was added to the image, there would be an increase in different answers and more people would see a butterfly as they are usually bright and colourful. Darren, our creative director, saw a wolf’s face!

Card II – Two humans

The red details of card II are often seen as blood, and are the most distinctive features. Responses to them can provide indications about how a subject is likely to manage feelings of anger or physical harm. This card can induce a variety of sexual responses. Marc saw a scary clown’s face.

Card III – Two People

This card is the first to create a challenge for people as it has small elements of colour. The meaning behind the image when it was created was meant to identify subjects who struggle with social skills and how they deal with the different interactions that can take place with people every day. An odd answer from Darren was that he saw a skull face. Marc, our lead creative believed he saw two women dancing, holding a red heart and the two red lines above the heads being music notes.

Card IV – Animal Hide

This is the first card to have used shading to create the illusion that there is more than one perspective and to focus users on finding a specific image behind the shadows. This is the reason why different objects can be found as some lines would stand out more than others to different people. It is commonly identified as an animal hide but when asking our staff, Marc said he saw a man on a motorbike.

Card VIII – Two Animals

Now that colour has been introduced, it can also help influence what a person perceives to see. The colour is used to create a more complex image and trigger emotions, so the viewer can relate to the card. This is the first of two cards to have used colour. It is claimed that viewers can see a four-legged animal. This may be intensified by the standing out of the pink ink blots. Antony, our front-end web developer, claimed to see pink mice but also viewed it as being similar a chest X-ray with lungs.

Card X – Spider, Crab, Rabbit, Caterpillar, Worm, Snake

This is the second image with colour. Here users claim to see either a crab or a spider in the blue splashes of ink. They also claim to see either a rabbit’s head and caterpillars, worms, snakes in the green blots. This shows just how diverse answers can be. A favourite answer from Casey, our project manager, was a hippo. A more extreme answer from Darren was a king rat sat on a throne.

Everyone relates to the images differently and in their own personal way. While you see one image another person may see something else. This could be due to triggering a memory and stirring emotions.

We hope this post gives you a better understanding of how differently images can be perceived.

If you want to discuss re-branding or a new venture, please feel free to get in touch and tap into our expertise.