The More-or-Less Morphing Face Illusion Revisited : Perceiving Natural Transient Changes in Faces Despite Fast Saccades

Faculty/Professorship: General Psychology and Methodology  
Author(s): Utz, Sandra ; Carbon, Claus-Christian  
Title of the Journal: i-Perception
ISSN: 2041-6695
Publisher Information: London : Sage Publishing
Year of publication: 2020
Volume: 11
Issue: 4
Pages: 10
Language(s): English
DOI: 10.1177/2041669520943218
van Lier and Koning introduced the more-or-less morphing face illusion: The detection of changes in a constantly morphing face-sequence is strongly suppressed by fast eye saccades triggered by a moving fixation dot. Modulators of this intriguing effect were investigated with systematically varied facial stimuli (e.g., human faces from varying morphological groups, emotional states) and fixation location. Results replicated the overall pattern of moving fixations substantially reducing the sensitivity to detect transitions. Importantly, a deviation from real to perceived changes could only be detected when faces were altered in a way not happening in real world—by changing identity. When emotional states of faces were changed, people were capable of perceiving these changes: A situation very similar to everyday life where we might quickly inspect a face by executing fast eye saccades but where we are still aware of transient changes of the emotional state of the very same person.
Keywords: face perception, face processing, more-or-less morphing face illusion, saccades, visual suppression, emotional expression, eye movements, fixation
Peer Reviewed: Ja
International Distribution: Ja
Open Access Journal: Ja
Type: Article
Release Date: 20. January 2023
Project: Open-Access-Publikationsfonds 2012-2020