• 02.26.14

Can You Spot The Snipers Hiding In These Photos?

These photos, by German artist Simon Menner, prove you probably can’t.


Do you pride yourself on having a good eye? Do you think you notice details others don’t? Well, test yourself by finding the sniper hiding in these deceptively tranquil-looking landscapes.

Even for those with a keen eye, spotting snipers is close to impossible, as this new photo series by German artist Simon Menner proves. Covered in moss, hiding behind trees, or buried under twigs and branches, these stealth sharpshooters are as good as invisible even when they’re circled in red. Hiding is their specialty: Snipers dig little holes, called “nests,” where they wait for their target. They can shoot with accuracy from a mile away.

The photos are a chilling glimpse into the world of modern warfare. In the military, design is often used not to please the human eye but to deceive it. The camouflage print was first invented in World War I, when uniforms and military trucks were hand-painted to blend in with natural environments, a tactic first employed by French military units called “camoufleurs.” In World War II, camouflage fabric started being mass-produced. Now, 100 years after the print’s invention, camouflage design has become so sophisticated that there’s talk of a 3-D printed invisibility cloak in the works, like the one in Harry Potter. Sounds cool at first, lest it falls into Voldemort-like hands.

About the author

Carey Dunne is a Brooklyn-based writer covering art and design. Follow her on Twitter.