Damon Belanger’s street art isn’t meant to catch your eye from across the road. If you’re not paying attention, you could easily stride right past it without even noticing anything out of the ordinary. But if you look closely at your surroundings you’ll see that what appear to be shadows on the sidewalk aren’t always what they seem.

Belanger’s playful shadow art, recently spotlighted by designyoutrust, is brightening up pedestrian walkways around Redwood City, California. In one area, bike racks seems to cast shadows of dancing flowers. In another, the silhouette of a smiling monster extends from the bottom of a mailbox.

The deceiving artwork may look like the work of a prankster, but each image was painted with permission from the city. Redwood City officials commissioned the Bay Area-based artist for the project in an effort to promote creativity in the downtown district. He ended up designing 20 pieces that lurk in the shadows where you least expect it.

"We don’t pay much attention to shadows until something interesting happens, like you notice a shadow cast by a tree that looks like an animal or something unusual," Belanger said. "It’s kind of like looking for shapes in clouds. That’s the way I approached these pieces: given what is there casting the shadow, what else could that thing be or project, given its size and shape? What if it transformed and came alive?"

Check out some of the artist’s most impressive creations below.

[h/t designyoutrust]

All images courtesy of Damon Belanger.