We see faces and familiar shapes everywhere we look. In clouds. In the bark of trees (or Ents as they prefer to be called). In the brick wall in the office kitchen. And just glancing at a car, we can tell that some of them are happy (or less than enthusiastic) to see us.

If you tend to see inanimate objects with faces, too, then you’ve encountered the wonderfully weird phenomenon known as pareidolia! It’s an experience a lot of human beings share because we’re wired to look for familiar patterns in random streams of information.

Bored Panda has collected some of the most interesting photos showing things with faces, so scroll down, upvote your faves, and let us know which of these cool photos you liked the most and why. Oh, and let us know if you can’t spot a funny face in any of the photos! We spoke with professor Kang Lee from the University of Toronto about seeing objects with faces in detail, so be sure to read on for the full insightful interview.

And when you’re done with this list, have a look through our earlier posts about pareidolia right here and here. And let’s not forget about this one right here - it's filled with interesting things!

#1

This Is Why Literal Fairy Tales Exist

This Is Why Literal Fairy Tales Exist

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Chancey
Community Member
4 months ago

These are adorable!

Tracy Lord
Community Member
4 months ago

Looks like a flower version of Groot.

Spikey Bunny
Community Member
4 months ago

Awwwww!!! Maybe Groot can have have a special friend in the next movie!

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JessG
Community Member
4 months ago

These are Hollyhock dolls. Used to make these as a kid.

Catlady6000
Community Member
4 months ago

Hibiscus, and Rose of Sharon also work. I spent many hours with flower fairies under my mom's Rose of Sharon

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Aldhissla VargTimmen
Community Member
4 months ago

Disney's fantasia!

Luisa Vasconcelos
Community Member
4 months ago

I love their hair. Will show a picture to my hairdresser and ask for the same.

Id row
Community Member
4 months ago

Conversely, snapdragon seed pods will scare the crap out of you. skull-flow...42487c.jpg skull-flower-5e64e8b42487c.jpg

Catie Marie
Community Member
4 months ago

My mom would make these for me and my sister when we were kids

Melissa Nunya
Community Member
4 months ago

Reminds me of Alice in Wonderland when she's tiny in the flower garden

FULL_EFFECT
Community Member
4 months ago

Tinker Bell is that you?!

Tiny Dynamine
Community Member
4 months ago

That's an awesome hairstyle!

Night Owl
Community Member
4 months ago

Beautiful little fairies

tuzdayschild
Community Member
4 months ago

They look like sweet little ladies

Dawn Ours
Community Member
4 months ago

Disney's Fantasia the dancing flowers

Tifferooski
Community Member
4 months ago

Looks just like the flowers from Alice and Wonderland.

BusLady
Community Member
4 months ago

The middle one has a B-52 hairstyle.

El Benjamino
Community Member
4 months ago

Donald Duck in drag

Natasha Forchione
Community Member
4 months ago

WOW!!!!

Tee
Community Member
4 months ago

They all have a face.

Anadelmy Lopez
Community Member
1 week ago

Beautiful

Mandy Martinez
Community Member
1 week ago

How cute?!

Mandy Martinez
Community Member
1 week ago

How cute!!

Lisa Laun
Community Member
1 week ago

Hollyhock dolls

Jennifer Biness
Community Member
1 week ago

Fantasia

Julene Fisher
Community Member
1 week ago

My grandmother showed me how to make these dolls from Hollyhock flowers!!

Heather Robertson
Community Member
1 week ago

We used to make hollyhock dolls when I was a kid, and float them in water in a rose bowl.

Elizabeth Piggin
Community Member
1 week ago

Brilliant

Skip Simonsen
Community Member
1 week ago

My grandmother used to make these

Kimberley Burgan
Community Member
1 week ago

I need these!!!

Shinomi Chan
Community Member
1 week ago

FAIRIES! I KNEW IT. You can't fool me flower

Olvia Damen
Community Member
1 week ago

They are cute

Sue Laughman
Community Member
1 week ago

Oh my looks real

Diane Gruver
Community Member
1 week ago

Baby Groot!

Annet Visser (Patjila)
Community Member
3 months ago

Cute! Reminds me of Silvari people in Guildwars :)

Lyn Trenary
Community Member
3 months ago

As a child I made these from the Holly hocks that grew in Grandmother’s garden. What wonderful memories this brings back to me.

Lyn Trenary
Community Member
3 months ago

As a child growing up in the country I made dollies just like these from Grandmothers garden! How thrilling to see them again.

Carla Laroche
Community Member
4 months ago

Beautyful

Barbara Stewart
Community Member
4 months ago

I love these

Ashley Wright
Community Member
4 months ago

Absolutely adorable

Linda C Warner
Community Member
4 months ago

Sweet , great job!

June Dominguez
Community Member
4 months ago

Sweet lil babies!

Jeremiah Grant
Community Member
4 months ago

<3 :D made me so happy to observe them

Nicola Batney
Community Member
4 months ago

Beautiful x

Jillian Townsend
Community Member
4 months ago

How lovely

Kurisurin Sutaringu
Community Member
4 months ago

Dont offend them, they could curse you!

De Ru
Community Member
4 months ago

How cool is this?

Holding Kelly
Community Member
4 months ago

Cute

Debrina Blackmoon
Community Member
4 months ago

^_^<3!!!

Daphne Mraz
Community Member
4 months ago

Wow these are truly amazing and I can see now why people say fairies are for real.

Frank Spencer
Community Member
4 months ago

Love

Dennis Kovalev
Community Member
4 months ago

Huey, Dewey, and Louie on tour

Tina Doherty
Community Member
4 months ago

These are my fave!

Tina Doherty
Community Member
4 months ago

One of my faves!

Matthew Smith
Community Member
4 months ago

Reminds me of the Flower Pokemon

Monica Siciliano
Community Member
4 months ago

Disney used these for "Fantasia"

april hebron
Community Member
4 months ago

It's a pokemon

KarmaPeace
Community Member
4 months ago

These are super cute

Cammy Wesson-Cohen
Community Member
4 months ago

I made these when I was young, in Seattle.

Azsha Lindsay
Community Member
4 months ago

awww so cute

Stacie Wyatt
Community Member
4 months ago

fairies

Layla Corman
Community Member
4 months ago

Need these for the fairy garden!🧚🏼‍♀️🧚🏽‍♀️

Pauliina Painilainen
Community Member
4 months ago

Like a Pokémon! 😍

Soni.
Community Member
4 months ago

These would make lovely cartoon or animation characters.

MaryAnn Heflin
Community Member
4 months ago

Groots sister

Slune
Community Member
4 months ago

They dance after midnight

Rachel Green
Community Member
4 months ago

and that ladies and gentlemen is how Furn Gully was made

Rachel Green
Community Member
4 months ago

this is amazing

Greg David Blair
Community Member
4 months ago

The wee little doll!

Greg David Blair
Community Member
4 months ago

Folk, not doll! Autocorrect

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Tara Brooks
Community Member
4 months ago

I want one

Hannah
Community Member
4 months ago

That's beautiful! <3

Karol Bondon
Community Member
4 months ago

Kinda like Tic, Tric and Trac in Agrabra.

jane holland
Community Member
4 months ago

I knew I loved hollyhocks for a reason!

Amy Hufford
Community Member
4 months ago

My great aunt showed me and my sister how to make these last year! Then my niece ruined mine and my sister made her give me hers.

Autumn Walton
Community Member
4 months ago

creepy much?

Michelle Muirhead
Community Member
4 months ago

Oh my goodness!

Nancy Delgado
Community Member
4 months ago

They DO look like a girl version of Groot!

Nancy Delgado
Community Member
4 months ago

I used to make these as a kid...from Hollyhocks in mom's garden, and I have planted some in the house to put out in my garden soon!

Daniel Mason
Community Member
4 months ago

Dat dress tho

C. Mayo
Community Member
4 months ago

We are groot.

Lama Lady
Community Member
4 months ago

Fantasia!

Annabell
Community Member
4 months ago

Fancy Haircuts!

Raine Soo
Community Member
4 months ago

Yes, these are fairies!

marley baron
Community Member
4 months ago

I'm in love with these 😊

Donna Reynolds
Community Member
4 months ago

Pretty little twees on parade.

Kailyn Patin
Community Member
4 months ago

beautiful

Analyn Lahr
Community Member
4 months ago

Aren't the same flowers in Wonderland that look exactly like that?

glowworm2
Community Member
4 months ago

Looks like a live action version of Disney's Fantasia.

Virgil Blue
Community Member
4 months ago

They remind me kind of the Hollow Knight bugs

Misha Christensen-wildeman
Community Member
4 months ago

mope def a fairy, i believe

yoyed
Community Member
4 months ago

Start getting extra cash every week... It's a valuable part time work opportunity for everyone... Best part about it is that you can do this job from comfort of your house and start earning $100-$2000 at the end of every week ... Apply for the job now and get your first paycheck at the end of the week...HERE══════►   2yelp

Lily Mae Kitty
Community Member
4 months ago

these are put together on purpose to look like fairies. not an example of Pareidolia

Slinkman
Community Member
4 months ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

They look like they want to fuck you up.

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#2

I Thought That Lady Was A Muppet

I Thought That Lady Was A Muppet

brockomaba Report

Slinkman
Community Member
4 months ago

Elmo's cool albino cousin ;)

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#3

What The Hell Is So Funny Steve?

What The Hell Is So Funny Steve?

CloudyAero Report

Hans
Community Member
4 months ago

Neither of the two do approve.

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"Pareidolia illustrates the interaction between the visual cortex and the frontal cortex of the human brain. It suggests that our brain is highly sensitive and expecting to encounter and process some special classes of objects in our environment because they are biological and socially important to our adaptions to the environment," professor Lee explained to us.

"For example, when you are walking in a dark street in the evening, your brain is on high alert to detect whether any threat will jump out any moment. In this case, you are more likely to have face or human pareidolia because it is important for you to err on the side of caution if you mistake a tree as a human being."

The professor pointed out that this is the reason why pareidolia often occurs in ambiguous situations. "However, for some people, their frontal cortex’s expectation for certain objects (e.g., faces) become so high that they see faces in many situations where no faces exist."

"Even in this kind of situation, it is normal. There is nothing wrong with these individuals," he stressed. "Pareidolia is different from paranoia or delusion or abnormal vision of individuals with psychosis. In fact, a recent study shows that those people with pareidolia tend to be more creative. Also, people who are religious may be able to see religious icons in non face objects as well."

#4

These Two Rocks Look Like A Mother Breastfeeding Her New Born Child

These Two Rocks Look Like A Mother Breastfeeding Her New Born Child

xaeminn Report

K2D2
Community Member
4 months ago

Mother nature at its finest. :3

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#5

I Want To Believe

I Want To Believe

mattythedog Report

aglmdo8
Community Member
4 months ago

pareidolia or not, this pebble is amazing !

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#6

Let Us Out

Let Us Out

kabloona Report

Francis
Community Member
4 months ago

What have you done to Frank, the Tomato? :O

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Professor Lee highlighted that pareidolia as a phenomenon shows how powerfully our imaginations (which comes from our frontal cortex) can affect our perception (which takes place first in the visual cortex which is located in the occipital lobe in the back of our head).

He added that pareidolia also tells us that "what we see are not things over there in the world but actually the co-creation of what is out there physically and what is in our mind mentally through our expectations and imaginations."

"Pareidolia is a broader phenomenon as it extends to touch and sound and other sensory channels. For example, you sometimes sense your phone vibrating when it is not, it is a tactile form of pareidolia. When you hear voices in a noisy environment, it is an auditory form of pareidolia."

#7

Dragon Tree

Dragon Tree

nelad1234 Report

Alex Harris
Community Member
4 months ago

I see Charizard.

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#8

Pulled The Door Handle Off And He Was As Shocked As I Was

Pulled The Door Handle Off And He Was As Shocked As I Was

MonsterPooper Report

Ola Polowczyk
Community Member
4 months ago

Hooman, why?!

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#9

Pigeon Poops Portrait Of Itself On A Leaf

Pigeon Poops Portrait Of Itself On A Leaf

Koda_Has_A_Top_Hat Report

Danieletc
Community Member
4 months ago

Shit knows their shit!

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“If someone reports seeing Jesus in a piece of toast, you’d think they must be nuts,” professor Lee previously told BBC Future. “But it’s very pervasive. We are primed to see faces in every corner of the visual world.” According to him, our imaginations exert a very powerful influence over our perceptions.

(On a semi-related note, no wonder we keep bumping into things—we're too busy imagining what it’d be like to fly on the back of a fire-breathing dragon.)

#10

Whatever This Chair Is Going Through I Can Relate

Whatever This Chair Is Going Through I Can Relate

thirddegreebernie Report

Steve
Community Member
4 months ago

I think this chair is my spirit animal...

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#11

There Is A Lion Wearing Sunglasses On The Belly Of This Grasshopper

There Is A Lion Wearing Sunglasses On The Belly Of This Grasshopper

opi_q Report

Hans
Community Member
4 months ago

Cool lion

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#12

A Cute Dog But Actually Just Rust

A Cute Dog But Actually Just Rust

XiaoRJ Report

Nickitams
Community Member
4 months ago

Looks like a watercolour painting!

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According to Live Science, people who are religious or have very strong beliefs about the supernatural see faces in objects and landscapes more often. Cosmologist Carl Sagan thought that pareidolia is a survival mechanism that helps us recognize faces from a distance and determine whether we’re being approached by an ally or an enemy.

Meanwhile, legendary artist and inventor Leonardo da Vinci saw pareidolia as an artistic device: “If you look at any walls spotted with various stains or with a mixture of different kinds of stones, if you are about to invent some scene you will be able to see in it a resemblance to various different landscapes adorned with mountains, rivers, rocks, trees, plains, wide valleys, and various groups of hills.”

There’s also something called the electronic voice phenomenon, aka auditory pareidolia, where people hear hidden messages that were supposedly placed there on purpose by songwriters. And that… that’s given rise to plenty of conspiracy theories, like the one that began circulating in 1966 that musician Paul McCartney had supposedly died and been replaced by a lookalike. Conspiracy theorists looked for clues in The Beatles songs and album covers.

#13

The Snow On Top Of This Mountain That Looks Like A Lizard

The Snow On Top Of This Mountain That Looks Like A Lizard

mcspecies Report

Hans
Community Member
4 months ago

Behold, the great white Lizard.

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#14

I See Sid

I See Sid

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Iris
Community Member
4 months ago

Where have I see this dude before ? Was it Ice age ?

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#15

This Overflowing Cupcake Ended Up Looking Like An Elephant

This Overflowing Cupcake Ended Up Looking Like An Elephant

Skyblue_Monty Report

FULL_EFFECT
Community Member
4 months ago

An elephant in a barrel bath

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#16

I Found A Piece Of Driftwood That Looks Like A Dragon's Head

I Found A Piece Of Driftwood That Looks Like A Dragon's Head

MarliePwns Report

Hans
Community Member
4 months ago

This is almost too perfect

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#17

Scared Switches

Scared Switches

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Ronel du Plessis
Community Member
4 months ago

The poor things

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#18

This Ashy Potato That Looks About Done With Life

This Ashy Potato That Looks About Done With Life

meebit Report

Francis
Community Member
4 months ago

does it burn when harry potter touches it?

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#19

This Boiled Egg Exploded While Cooking And Looks Like A Snail

This Boiled Egg Exploded While Cooking And Looks Like A Snail

monkeyman9608 Report

Nea
Community Member
4 months ago

Oie this is so cute

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#20

Chomp

Chomp

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DforDorothy
Community Member
4 months ago

Cool pic!

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#21

Looks Like There's A Goddess In This Orange

Looks Like There's A Goddess In This Orange

theone1221 Report

Danieletc
Community Member
4 months ago

Kist the Sun goddess

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#22

I’m Flying

I’m Flying

claporga Report

Don Golosso
Community Member
4 months ago

Why did I hear this in Ralph Wiggums voice?

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#23

My Car Seems Pretty Happy About The Snowstorm

My Car Seems Pretty Happy About The Snowstorm

nearpractical Report

Daria B
Community Member
4 months ago

Looks sarcastic to me.

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#24

"Yer A Hazard, Harry"

"Yer A Hazard, Harry"

tiatiaaa89 Report

Nicole Blomkamp
Community Member
4 months ago

It's the boogey man from nightmare before christmas!!!

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#25

Bubbles That Form A Little Cat Shape

Bubbles That Form A Little Cat Shape

HowAboutNo69 Report

Danieletc
Community Member
4 months ago

The breed is ... let me guess ... a teacup?

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#26

This T. Rex Shaped Cactus

This T. Rex Shaped Cactus

P10_WRC Report

Shawn
Community Member
4 months ago

The Cactasaur Rex aka the Derpasuar

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#27

This Shadow Looks Exactly Like A Man’s Head. Lone Peak, Big Sky, Montana

This Shadow Looks Exactly Like A Man’s Head. Lone Peak, Big Sky, Montana

clarkbarniner Report

Kesyra
Community Member
4 months ago

I see another face in the back of that face.

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#28

I Wonder Which Song Was On

I Wonder Which Song Was On

Axel-Magoche Report

Danieletc
Community Member
4 months ago

Pole dancing

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#29

Dog Stick I Found

Dog Stick I Found

AidanOrsargos Report

Daria B
Community Member
4 months ago (edited)

It is the old wizard's magic staff and at the same time his summon creature.

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#30

The Pattern On My Dog's Chest Looks Like A Cat Mid Sneeze

The Pattern On My Dog's Chest Looks Like A Cat Mid Sneeze

VintageRice Report

Lee roberts
Community Member
4 months ago

Such a cute dog

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#31

She’s Having Twins

She’s Having Twins

plazma421 Report

Slinkman
Community Member
4 months ago

Britknee and kneemo

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#32

This Orchid Really Looks Like An Eagle

This Orchid Really Looks Like An Eagle

kYlejAEnz Report

Potterhead Unicorn
Community Member
4 months ago

These are called pink moth orchids if anyone's interested!

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#33

What Did He See

What Did He See

HashTheDankEngine Report

DforDorothy
Community Member
4 months ago

I don't know,but he's having a running nose ever since.

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#34

Alien Pickle

Alien Pickle

MaxMelisson Report

Tee
Community Member
4 months ago

The bottom picture messed up pickles for me

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#35

My Drink Looks Like A Crocodile Is Looking At Me

My Drink Looks Like A Crocodile Is Looking At Me

wikings2 Report

Nea
Community Member
4 months ago

Are you sure this is pareidolia and not real something inside?

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#36

The Ice In My Glass Sort Of Looks Like A Face

The Ice In My Glass Sort Of Looks Like A Face

HOOKMAN-BUTTZ Report

Hans
Community Member
4 months ago

Creepy!

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#37

This Pure-Bread My Friend Got At A Restaurant

This Pure-Bread My Friend Got At A Restaurant

HolyCoconuts Report

Slinkman
Community Member
4 months ago

Well this is a unique bread of dogs.

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#38

Found A Rock That Looks Like A Shark

Found A Rock That Looks Like A Shark

gdarb Report

glowworm2
Community Member
4 months ago

It looks like a Bullet Bill from Super Mario.

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#39

Stupid Sexy Flanders

Stupid Sexy Flanders

abdlforever Report

Troux
Community Member
4 months ago

Hahah perfect Simpsons reference!

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Note: this post originally had 107 images. It’s been shortened to the top 39 images based on user votes.

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