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3D Anaglyphs

Anaglyph is the name that describes the three dimensional images and film that come to life by wearing glasses with Red and Blue lenses. Popularised in the 1950’s, the technology is now much refined with less intrusive glasses that either flicker at high speed or use subtle chroma tinting to retain the full colour in an image.

But I really enjoy trying to replicate the 3D stereoscopic effect with off the shelf tools and video equipment. The best results have been when using 3D animation tools (such as Strata Studio Pro) whereby the render process automatically outputs a stereoscopic image and the only post processing is adjusting the Red and Blue hues.

I’ve pulled apart standard 2D photographs and by creating layers, attempted to recreate z-space using Adobe After Effects, have strapped two domestic camera’s side by side to replicate human vision and have also tried dedicated 3D stills cameras using the Loreo 3D Lens. To this end, I’d say that I certainly haven’t nailed the process, but the fun is in the experimentation. If you have a pair of 3D glasses, I hope you enjoy some of my experiments, or at least, can see the potential in what I was aiming to achieve.

The Worlds First 3D Video Podcast

This was the worlds first 3D Anaglyph 3D Video Podcast. The titles were rendered in Strata Pro and rendered to stereoscope using Adobe After Effects. The piece to camera was butchered together using two different DV handy-cams, were synced in Final Cut Pro and then rendered to stereoscope using Adobe After Effects. It’s fair to say that the 3D video experiment was only partly successful. Not enough depth of field, different lens types and automatic white balancing degraded the effect. The hammy acting didn’t help either.

I posted my first live action experiment to YouTube to gain feedback and to share with the enthusiast community. To date, i’ve had 680,000+ views (my most successful video to date). It’s fair to say that this experiment totally sucked balls. It would go on to create the groundwork for the live action video segment used in the Big Brother Uncouth video podcast (which sucked a little less)

Anaglyph 3D Tunnel Flythrough

This experiment was much more successful than my live action attempts. Primarily because the 3D application renders the stereoscopic images and all that is then requires is to merge them back into an anaglyph stereoscopic image. the other reasons why they are more successful are:

  • depth of field is constantly changing
  • the texture of the shapes are complex
  • the colour of the render is neutral and does not favour red or blue

3D Space Invaders Concept

As another experiment I attempted to re-create a game of Space Invaders to see how it could be translated into an Anaglyph 3D environment. I managed to achieve a believable depth of field between the star background and the space invaders, but my attempts to introduce video explosions that zoomed towards the camera missed the mark.

Converting 2D Photos into 3D Images

My first real experiments with Anaglyphs came about when i tried to convert regular photographs into faux 3D images. By creating layers within the image and hand blending the red and blue hues I achieved the depth of field needed to create the illusion.



These two combined two of my favourite photography styles: lomography and 3D stereoscopic anaglyph



These were taken with a Loreo 3D Camera are best viewed with a 3D lens viewer (but if you cross your eyes you might be able to make it work).


Posted on

April 6, 2014


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