Bizarre Photo of Black Cat Sparks Fierce Debate: 'If Picasso Did Taxidermy'

Recently, an unusual photo of a cat has gone viral on the internet after a user claimed it was created as a result of a failed panorama picture.

Since it was shared on Sunday by Reddit user u/GuardedInstructor, the post has now amassed 20,200 upvotes as well as 217 comments. However, it appears to be a repost of a popular image from over a year ago that was published by a user named u/Comrade_Vodka, which received almost 80,000 upvotes.

The reposted picture was shared on the r/therewasanattempt subreddit, captioned: "To make a cute panorama picture." In the photo, a black cat can be seen lying on its side on a carpet. However, the cat in question appears misshapen and extremely thin, likely due to issues that occurred either while the photograph was taken or afterwards during editing.

In typical Reddit fashion, many users rushed to the comment section to share their reactions.

"Oh my god this is kinda cursed," one user said.

"You should probably feed your cat," another commenter jokingly suggested.

"Nonsense, it's just a little deflated just plug it and pump air into it," another Redditor wrote.

One user also commented: "This is how cats see themselves when they are fed 30mins late."

Meanwhile, one user made a reference to Tim Burton, an American film director, producer, screenwriter as well as an animator, famously known for The Nightmare Before Christmas, Edward Scissorhands, Corpse Bride and more.

"I think they just forgot to turn off the Tim Burton filter," they wrote, pointing out a resemblance to characters from the aforementioned titles.

"This looks like a cross between Picasso and Tim Burton," another commenter chimed in.

One user seemed to agree, writing: "That's what I was thinking. Like if Picasso did taxidermy."

However, while others were sharing their thoughts on the photo, some users claimed that the photo isn't a result of a failed panoramic photo attempt after all.

"But that's content self aware tho, not panorama," one user pointed out.

Another user agreed, adding that "it was a meme a while back to do it to cats."

The users in question may be referring to Content-Aware Scaling, a feature present in the image editing software Adobe Photoshop. Adobe outlines that the function is used to "affect pixels in areas that don't have important visual content." This could mean that the original creator intentionally chose to scale the cat down to appear thinner while replacing parts of it renders of the surrounding carpet.

An image showing a standing black cat
An image showing a standing black cat. Recently, an unusual photo of a cat has gone viral on the internet after a user claimed it was created as a result of a failed panorama picture. Getty Images.

According to Adobe, over 90 percent of the world's creative professionals use Photoshop. However, it seems that many people fail to tell the difference between an edited and unedited photo.

A research paper submitted to the Cognitive Research: Principles and Implications journal found that participants demonstrated a "limited ability to detect original and manipulated images." And in many cases where test subjects concluded that an image was edited, they were often "unable to locate the manipulation."

This wasn't the first instance of an edited image or optical illusion making the rounds on the internet. Previously, Newsweek wrote about an image of a security guard that made him look headless, confusing Reddit users. On another occasion, Newsweek covered a story about a viral tweet that featured a fake image showing Ariana Grande kissing Osama bin Laden on the cheek.

Newsweek has reached out to u/GuardedInstructor for comment.