What The Butler (AKA Tim) Saw!

From Grand Illusions.

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Optical toys and illusions are the theme of this video.

First, a card that Tim received some years ago, which shows a vehicle that looks as if it is 3D, but is actually hollow. So when you turn the base one way, the vehicle looks as if it is turning in the opposite direction.

Then a card from the artist Patrick Hughes – https://www.patrickhughes.co.uk/ – with one of his ‘Reverse Perspective’ images.

Then some Thaumatropes, which Tim bought when he was in Germany. These were popular optical illusions in the 19th century. Sometimes the two parts of the image were on opposing sides of a piece of card; these are more solid, being made of wood.

Finally a cardboard kit that Tim made. It is a Mutascope, and there are a large number of cards inside, each with a slightly different image. They are attached to an axle, and when you turn the handle on the outside of the box, the images flick quickly from one to the next, and you get the impression of continuous motion.

The large versions were often found at the seaside as an amusement for tourists. You would put a coin in the slot, turn the handle, and you would get a little film sequence. They were sometimes known as ‘What The Butler Saw’ machines.