Thursday, May 31, 2012

Photography in 3D

Roof of the Walt Disney Theater
A couple of weeks ago, I uploaded posts on the basics of stereoscopic 3D imaging and ways to view 3D content. 
While watching 3D movies, and viewing 3D pictures on the web can be enjoyable, it’s even more fun to create your own 3D content. Here are three ways you can create 3D photos yourself.

The simplest way to capture 3D is using a 3D camera which has two separate lenses and two separate image sensors. I use a Fuji Finepix Real 3D W1 which is as easy to use as any standard point and shoot camera. Because the two lenses zoom synchronously, I am able to compose scenes and capture them without any concern about alignment between the left and right frames. The Finepix can save each image as a .mpo file which is a popular 3D image format or as a 2D .jpg file. Both the left and right frames are captured at 10 megapixels.

If you prefer to use your DSLR camara, you can convert it to 3D by using the Loreo Lens in a Cap. The Lens in a Cap uses two lenses, 90mm apart, to capture a left and right view side by side on a single frame. Images captured with the Loreo Lens in a Cap can be printed and viewed using the Loreo Pixi viewer without any additional image processing. In my experience, the Lens in a Cap worked perfectly when I could position the camera at the right distance from the subject. Too often, the fixed focal length on the lens made it difficult to compose the image the way I wanted.

You can also capture a stereoscopic 3D image with a standard 2D camera and lens using a method called “cha-cha.” To cha-cha you stand with both feet together and frame your scene in the viewfinder and capture the left image. Then you slide your right foot about 90 mm to the right, slide your left foot next to your right and capture the right image.  You need to do this dance without moving the camera up or down or rotating it in any way. If you successfully captured the images in alignment, you should be able to print each of them side by side and view them in stereo using a Loreo Pixi viewer.

Why not give it a try?

Fuji FinePix Real 3D W1
Loreo Lens in a Cap

The Creativity Paradox is sponsored in part by Convertible Solutions which supplies specialty paper substrates to digital printersdirect marketing companies and photo book fulfillment companies.