40+ Fascinating Examples of How Things Change Over Time
Change can happen quickly or over a period of time, slowly changing so that we barely notice what is happening before our eyes. The way people dress and talk, the bluffs along the sea shore, or the growth of a summer garden.
Many parts of life have changed significantly in just the last few decades. It’s incredible to see examples of how our environment has changed throughout time, and can help us feelings of wonderment and awe. Read on below for some of our favorite examples of change over time.
1. When Nature Starts to Promote Responsible Hiking
Through the eyes of a child, this tree is quite magical. It was a signpost for hikers before, but now it’s grown to be so much more. It feels like Mother Nature herself has planted this thing to be a breathing reminder that we should love and take care of nature.
Nature provides many reasons to get out and hike. This incredible photo unbelievably serves as a sign to go out and enjoy the beauty of nature responsibly. It might thrill you, but you will also learn an important lesson thanks to seeing this tree.
2. Petting The Dog
This plaque on the Charles Bridge has seen better days. Funnily enough, the discolored sections on this piece of art are confined solely around the dog figure.
This of course is due to people not being able to resist the temptation to pet the dog. Yes, even an artistic rendering of one. If you were to pass by this piece of art, would you pet the dog too? We can only imagine what a few more decades will do to the look and color of this plaque.
3. Incredible Rust or Abstract Tattoo?
You would be forgiven for assuming this photo is an abstract tattoo. Take a closer look! Were you able to see it? It’s not a tattoo but a round metal post with rust on its surface. The oxidized metal coil and cord converted into something spectacular – an incredible creation of nature mixed with time.
This rust pattern is a perfect example of what nature can do with a little help from the passage of time. These intricate details are sure to have passersby captivated by the simple but beautiful design, making them feel like they’re looking at an actual piece of art up close.
4. The Lone Car in the Forbidden Dark Forest
There are always rumors about what lies in the dark forest. Some say it is filled with vampires; others think there’s a castle or treasure trove hidden among its trees and rocks. This lone car in the forbidden and dark forest has been abandoned for likely decades.
It was once a mystery as to why it was left there, but this person in the photo is the long-lost owner. He left his first car in the forest because it had broken down.
5. Love for Pac-Man
We all remember the iconic Pac-Man, a small yellow circle trapped in an arcade who must eat as many dots and power pellets as he can while being chased by ghosts. Seeing this old screen brings back memories of how much fun people used to have playing it.
Most who played this video game had a wonderful experience! Although many people may not believe how much fun it could be back then due to the more advanced technology available now, just about everyone knows what an icon PACMAN has become.
6. Worn Windmill
These old steps bear the history of every step that was taken to the top of this magnificent structure. While the stairs might be a bit worn down, they’re still sturdy enough to walk up and enjoy the beautiful view up there.
This small detail is all that remains to show people’s history with it. As people walk down the last few steps of this worn staircase, they are adding their own trace to these relics of history that have absorbed the weight of so many other travelers.
7. Traces of History
It’s amazing how history exists deep beneath our feet, even if we don’t always realize it or notice it. It’s fascinating to see these antique artifacts of the past.
Here’s a history lesson you’ll never forget – the cobbled road and tram tracks of yesteryear are now buried in pavement. What a neat picture!
8. A Trail of History
Historical artifacts come in many forms, including books, paintings, statues, and even old clothing. This old driver’s license is another glance back into the past.
This antique artifact surfaced after more than a century of being hidden. One can feel the history just by looking at it.
10. Old Crossword Puzzle Board
This photo of a clipboard doesn’t seem special at first, but what lies beneath is much more intriguing. A woman’s passion for solving newspaper crossword puzzles has resulted in thousands of words remaining on this clipboard.
The board itself could be your all-time favorite puzzle from history. It’s a treasure worth holding onto for as long as you can. All that ink is the result of thousands of questions being answered day after day.
11. The Last Thermos You'll Ever Need
The Stanley thermos on the left is surely an old friend. The person who used it faithfully for decades deserves all the respect in the world for their commitment to the mug that would keep their coffee warm every morning before college and work.
It is thoroughly impressive considering that this old, durable thermos was built with only one goal in mind: serving its owner faithfully. Do you think that this new replacement can match half of the service this loyal heater has given?
12. Just A Dog And His Car
This pup loves nothing more than sticking his head out the car window on long rides and taking in the glorious breeze. By the looks of this image it seems as though this dog has been assuming this same enjoyable position all of his life.
Over time as the dog’s paws hang out of the car window, the friction and rubbing against the door seems to have taken off the paint job along with it. Luckily, the owner doesn’t seem to mind much. Cars are replaceable. Your furry best friend is not.
13. Rainbow Worms
Your mouth may have watered when you saw this colorful rainbow candy. The drips look like gummy worms, but if this was sweet and delicious, we doubt it would have been left to accumulate on a bench like that.
It is a spectacular sight to see! However, these sweet-looking treats are rainbow stalactites formed by years of dripping dye. They’re beautiful, but we wouldn’t recommend snacking on them.
14. Layers of Paint Make An Intriguing Design
This fascinating image resembles that of a tree stump. The interesting thing about tree stumps is that they reveal a tree’s age as each individual ring represents a year of time.
Similarly to the rings of a tree, this image of a paint stick also tells the story of the passage of time. Each ring of paint represents a new idea and project. The painter who used this stirring stick must have been quite the artist as so many layers of paint have accumulated over the years.
15. Trespassing Sign Gets Eaten By A Tree
You might think this sign is just an attempt at scaring people, but that’s not the case. The imposing warning is not enough for these trespassers who are lured by their curiosity and want to see what’s beyond the sketchy signs.
The sign looks like a tasty snack to the tree. Indeed, this tree seems to be suggesting that perhaps the people who put up the sign are also trespassing on the tree’s property!
16. Shrinking Slides
This is what happens if you leave one of your slides in an extremely hot situation for too long. The once-cushy slipper lost its comfort thanks to extended exposure to the sun.
The air has removed all the moisture from it. This poor thing couldn’t be worn anymore now. The owner needs to buy new slippers. The next time you’re thinking of leaving shoes in your car on a hot day, stop and think about what might happen.
17. Well Played
This piano was sitting in the corner of a room, dusty and untouched. The only thing on it that showed some signs of wear were finger impressions on the keys. It looks like no one has played this instrument for years, but back in its heyday, it was one popular instrument.
The fingerprints are proof of a time long ago when someone danced their fingers across all these keys to create beautiful music. It is now a musical imprint that echoes through time, whispering secrets about the past.
18. Old Knob, New Life
For the past 20 years, this person’s old shift knob has been hiding a new life underneath. It was such a sad moment when they realized that it had finally reached its demise. However, when they retired it, they found an incredible surprise underneath.
All things do indeed come to an end, but when you least expect it, something good can happen. Beneath the worn-out leather was another shift knob – in perfect condition.
19. Skateboarding Has Never been so Cool
Skateboards are a fun form of transportation for many people, and they provide the opportunity to express themselves creatively. What if you could have a design that changes over time? It has been made possible with this deck!
The graphics on these decks change as they get scratched off by use. This skateboard deck is no ordinary board. It’s also durable enough that it doesn’t scratch away without good reason.
20. Amazing Bricks that Are Nearly 300 Years Old
If you are looking for a footrest that will last forever, look no further – this one is made of bricks. This bar’s footrest is decades old, and the worn texture of the aged bricks speaks volumes about the hardiness the material possesses.
Bricks are highly affected by moisture as they are porous. They will swell and shrink as they adjust to the change in temperature or humidity around them. Bricks may be tough and adaptable, but they can still be worn away by decades of having people dragging their shoes across them.
21. Salt Water Is a Powerful Force
Salty water can create wondrous things. The rusted pieces of metal in the photos might look like they belong on a boat, but they’re actually part of a fence near the shore. When there’s rough weather the seawater washes up, flowing through the pickets of this fence.
It goes to show how magical every moment can be with nature and the way man-made products can be worn don by nature over time.
22. The Easy Way to Make Your Home Look Like New
It’s incredible how much dust can collect on windowsills that haven’t been cleaned in decades. The dust and grime that accumulate on the surfaces of a home dull its shine. As you can see from the image below, a dirty house looks old and unpleasant due to how much detail is lost amidst all the dirt.
Dirty homes need some tender love and care. You may be overwhelmed at the thought of doing it, but if these workers can reverse the actions of time and make these houses look new again, then there’s proof that it can be done.
23. It's Not Concrete Anymore
What is the mystery behind this concrete floor that wants to be a natural creek bed? It seems that whoever laid the concrete decided to fill it with stones to make the job economical. As the water from the drain slowly eroded the surface over time, a beautiful pattern was revealed.
Though it’s natural for workers to want to save money and for water to erode things over time, it’s amazing that these forces combined to create such a work of art. Mother Nature would be proud.
24. The Pen Addict's Top 10 Pens of All Time
As a student, this person can’t imagine the horror of not having enough pens. Every pen enthusiast needs a reliable fountain pen to carry with them at all times. Every single pen in this collection has an impressive history and has its own unique story behind it.
Pens are essential, and there is no way to overstate how much this individual relies upon them as part of their daily routine. Most people would lose dozens of pens a year, but this person has managed to preserve all of them, spent cartridges and all!
25. The True King of the Jungle
This building’s facade is slowly transforming into the head of a lion. At first glance, it may take you a while to see this, but once you do, you’ll see how amazing it is! The way the rain has washed away some of the white paint reveals something else.
Can you see the head with fangs snarling at you? It is an unexpected sight, for sure. It’s like he has been waiting patiently for someone to come by and notice him! Finally, the king of the jungle has been revealed!
26. Stepping Back in Time
This floor has seen generations of customers come and go. The old, tattered brown tiles are still intact. It was freshly vacuumed every week by a diligent owner who loved his job, despite how monotonous it became over time.
People would still have no idea that many generations have stepped on this floor if it weren’t for the footprints left by every member of those generations. With every step, people carry with them the footsteps of those who walked before them.
27. Three Generations… of Hats
The interesting part about this photograph is how a collection spanning decades could be so loyal to the same brand. The owner of these hats has clearly been a loyal fan of Menard for decades.
People have been fascinated by hats since they were first invented. Some think that hat collectors only do so for fashion, but there is always a story behind every collection. A cap’s physical appearance may change over time, but the memories it has are irreplaceable.
28. Cat's Love for Bench Legs
Cats have a lot on their minds: grooming fur, sleeping 22 hours per day – who needs anything else? Well, there is one exception. When they’re not being lazy in the sun or chasing mice, cats love nothing more than scratching furniture!
This cat has been around for 12 years, and one of her favorite spots to scratch is this bench leg. This adorable kitty clearly spends every single day scratching at this leg. Cats have sensitive paws, and they love working their claws into whichever item of furniture in the house is your favorite.
29. A Coin that Survived the Test of Time
This old coil waited over 60 years for the perfect moment to be discovered. It was such an amazing surprise, and though it has certainly seen better days, its worn-out surface is evidence of all the adventures it went on.
The story of this 1960s-era dime would be a tale worth hearing. Too bad it’s not in better condition. Regardless of what shape it may be in, it’s cool to find a coin in your pocket that has been around for decades.
30. From Generation to Generation
This door has been opened and closed by different generations for over 50 years. Despite the banging, the door stands sturdy as steel and stunning in red. Every time someone walks through this door, they will be reminded of the history of the place.
A young visitor to this shop made sure that future generations could enjoy its beauty by using a smartphone to take a picture. It’s easy to see how much of an impact this has had on younger generations. You can now share this with everyone who’s fascinated by how things change over time.
31. The Oldest Barbershop in Town
Hundreds of people have entered this barbershop over the years, looking for a haircut or shave. It has been around for decades and is one of those landmarks that you can’t miss as you walk down the street. To this day, the barbershop is still one of the most iconic places in its neighborhood.
The walls are filled with pictures and memories, and every chair in this small shop has supported dozens of people since it opened its doors. The round stains on the floor signify how many years this shop has been serving the town.
32. The Ocean is Coming
Sea air can be a good thing or a bad thing. When the breeze is gentle, it’s one of life’s most pleasant experiences, but when the wind picks up to gale-force speeds, things get ugly, like this knob in the photo!
The salt in those ocean waves is harsh on property. It’ll slowly corrode anything out there! Salt is always blowing in from the ocean, and the houses near coastal areas must stand against the salty breeze that is coming to damage them day by day.
33. A New Generation of Teddy Bears is Here
When you were a kid, did your teddy bear always have to be the first one on the bed? Did it ever go missing, only to show back up again when least expected? Sometimes, it feels as though they have lives of their own.
This photo features an assortment of bears spanning the past two decades, and no matter how much time has passed, each one still holds special meaning. Children often cherish and care for their bears more than anything else, even as they grow up.
34. A History of Vibration
Back-and-forth movement over short distances caused this stainless steel bolt to look like an hourglass. You never know what might happen when vibration gets to play freely. This force of nature can have incredible effects over time.
Vibrations are far more common than you would believe. In every wave, people are reminded that vibrating motions happen all around us, even if they are not visible to human eyes. It is a reminder of how vibrations can change things in the world, including ourselves.
35. The Most Terrifying Halloween Decoration Ever
Many families decorate their houses with pumpkins that aren’t quite big enough for carving yet. As you can see from the picture below, even carved pumpkins are affected by the endless procession of time.
It’s surprising how it survives so long without wilting or rotting like any other plant in nature would have done. It’s almost like the pumpkin was mummified or petrified. Perhaps figuring this out and replicating it would be an interesting Halloween science experiment!
36. You Can Never Go Wrong With a Dog
In this photo is the ID tag of a 13-year old family dog. It’s still in wonderful shape. However, you can see that it lived an active life. Though this tag is old, its puppy-dog owner is still alive and faithfully serving his family.
People will always have a special love for their dogs. A dog is a friend who stands by during the most difficult times in your life; a friend who will continue to show up at your door. Everyone should consider the dog to be a cherished part of their family unit.
37. Lap Dog
It is not uncommon for dogs to run around in circles. This doggy has been circling this swimming pool for years, running laps of its own personal Olympic stadium.
He must have some serious staying power to keep up with this routine. The energetic dog can’t hide his excitement and can’t seem to find anything that interests him in his house or yard. So long as he’s happy, we’re happy.
38. The Secret to Success is Staying Sharp
You may not realize it, but knives get dull with time. This lovely photo of an old blade that has been sharpened for 41 years emphasizes the importance of maintaining your blades in order for them to perform at their best.
Just like this blade, the secret to maintaining your value is to hone your skills daily. The most successful people are always working hard and constantly improving their craft, whatever it may be. This makes them stand out from the crowd because they’re consistently making progress.
39. An Old And Aged Chain
There are many ways to make something look beautiful, whether for this moment or forever. You can see how nature has taken over this old chain that was once used as a decoration long ago. Nature is truly amazing.
It’s now rusted away into an appealing brown color, with some parts turning black as they age. This piece of metal has been worn down by nature, but it would be a shame if we just left it hidden.
40. Don't Miss the Best Hidden Gem in Tallinn
This rug has mastered the art of stealth. Sometimes, the best thing you can do is blend in. This rug in Tallinn blends in with the floor so perfectly that few people notice it until it’s pointed out to them.
Do you want to know how long this has been there? The answer is decades. If you’re looking for a rug that will last for a long time, this might be it! Indeed, if you visit this town, you’ll find that many people know and love this stealthy rug.
41. The 10 Year Challenge For Dogs
Dogs are said to be the best companions a person could have. The markings on this puppy have gradually faded over nearly ten years. Its face markings have faded to the point that they are no longer visible! However, that sweet expression hasn’t changed a bit.
The dog is now a cute old pup with a white forehead and brows to match! The forehead may have wrinkles from all of those happy memories, but its smile is still bright. It only proves how a dog changes over time.
42. The Story of a Pet Donkey Statue
This museum has a donkey for you to pet! You’ll have the chance to feel and see what happens when people are allowed to touch a work of art. The donkey sculpture was specifically bought for people who visit this art exhibit.
The shiny areas show where visitors’ fingers have worn away its original bumpy surface, which used to be a dark brown. Now, it has a lighter color because it has been touched by so many curious visitors.
43. You Will Never Look at Water the Same Way Again
Water has been falling on the same spot for centuries, creating these terrific grooves. This slab that’s been blasted by rain for decades, and its resilience shows.
Not only is it an example of how powerful nature can be, but it’s also a reminder that even something as soft and gentle as water can have a powerful impact with time and persistence.
44. Chopstick Grooves
It’s refreshing to see that some places preserve their dishes, even when they’re not perfect anymore. After years of spoons being rested against its rim (and dare we say, perhaps a few bumps and falls), this bowl has seen better days. But its chips and grooves give it character.
Fixing broken and dented bowls prevent unnecessary waste from being created and save our planet’s natural resources for future generations to enjoy. People should get behind this kind of idea.
45. Another Tree Versus Man-Made Elements
While we’ve seen our face share of trees versus signs in this article, it’s also interesting to see the indents imprinted onto this cool tree.
If we were tasked with naming this tree we would most likely compare and name it after the breakfast staple, the waffle!
46. Tire Erosion
Not all of us are in tune with what their car needs and when it needs it. That is where these helpful tires come into play!
As the tires are worn down by the road they begin to show the words “Replace Me.” This is only helpful if the owner of the car is regularly looking at their tires.
47. Hugged Till The End
This comparison of the two bears is very cute and shows how much the teddy bear on the left was loved and adored.
It looks like the bear on the right has a long life full of hugs and love if it is anything like the life of the bear on the left. Too cute!
48. Groves That Created A Staircase
This is one of the prettiest staircases that we’ve ever seen! Located in a national park in Turkey, it sure is appealing to the eye.
Of course, it does look slippery as well. People need to be extra careful when ascending up the stairs.
49. Trees Cannot Be Stopped
Yet another sign-hungry tree munching down on the colored metal. This looks like a sign at someone’s home that got left behind.
This sign got wedged and will likely continue to do so as the tree grows taller and taller.
50. This Abundance Of Posters
This insane amount of posters stacked on top of each other does make one wonder. Why did no one ever take them down? How old is the very first poster on the pole?
Furthermore, how did this strange tunnel become burrowed against the hanging posters? A true mystery.
51. This Sign Is Metal
Get it? This sign is “metal,” in that it is made out of metal and that the lettering looks like the flier of a metal poster.
While the sign isn’t saying anything very rock n’ roll, the way time has affected it does give it a very edgy look.
52. Wonder What The Code Is...
Over the passage of time this keypad has finally revealed its secrets. It would not take too many codes to figure out how to break into the home that this keypad has been tasked with harboring.
If you haven’t noticed by now, the address is the same as the code. Not the brightest idea…
53. Double Double Toil And Trouble
One side of this doorknob has been exposed to the elements while the other side has not, and boy can you see the difference!
The cold winds and beating of the elements have really taken its toll to the point where the doorknob does not even look useable.
54. When They Come Knockin'
This door has suffered the wearing down of a doorbell, which has chipped the paint and warped the wood. Hopefully it doesn’t affect the temperatures on the store’s colder days.
To fix the problem one would have to likely replace the entire door, which can be costly and inconvenient.
55. Doberman Begins To Take Shape
This artistic addition that was put upon the fence is a cute doberman who has been changed by the elements, which actually gives it a more realistic look of the dog type!
Just as a real dog greys with age, so does this piece of art. Eventually, the dog will be completely white.
57. It Is Going To Be A "No"
It seems there is a general consensus when it comes to whether or not people want a carwash, and it is that they do not.
The “no” button has been nearly completely worn down with time, meaning a lot of dirty cars drove off of the lot.
58. Walking The Line
This amusement park has seen its fair share of wear and tear from all of the visitors coming through to visit.
Hopefully the rides are not as worn out as the walkways, though!