3D anaglyph photos and videos have been around for more than a decade now. An anaglyph image is nothing but two images of the same subject superimposed over each other with a slightly different perspective using two contrasting colors. The photos are either shot once with two separate cameras or twice using a single camera.

Using a single camera, the two images are shot from the same distance of the subject, but are shot with a slight distance of 3 to 4 inches from each other. Humans can see the world around in 3D because the left and right eyes are seeing two different images of the same subject, but at slightly different angle. These two images are processed by the brain to create a 3D image, by which one can see the depth in an image.

Similarly, to create a 3D image, you would need two photos of the same subject from different angles in the same way that the human eyes would see it. An anaglyph image employs two different colors, usually red and cyan, and when viewed from two–color glasses, a 3D stereoscopic image is formed. In this workshop, we will show you how to shoot stereo photographs and convert them into 3D anaglyph stereoscopic images using a simple free utility called Anaglyph Maker 3D.

Shooting stereo images

The method employed in shooting stereo images is a little trickier than that for shooting single photos. Usually, not everyone would have two digital cameras, let alone two of the same make and model. So in order to do without two cameras, we will experiment with a single camera itself.

X = same distance and Y = 3-4 inches. If X increases, Y will also increase proportionally

The trick is very simple; you would need to shoot two images of the same subject from slightly different positions.For the first image, just shoot an image of the subject from a distance. Then slide the camera to the right or left by 3 to 4 inches and click the second image. You will have to make sure that the distance, focus, lighting and all other settings of the camera remain identical for both the photos required for the stereo image. Finally, download the photos to your computer and the images as 'left' and 'right' respectively. You now have stereo images finally ready to create a 3D photo.

You can practice this method by shooting still life with a single camera mounted on a tripod. The tripod will help you shoot images from the same height, thus eliminating any differences between the two photos, and will also minimize the possibilities of image blur due to handshakes. Shooting everyday life would be little problematic in this case, because the subject(s) will definitely move and the two photos (left and right) will not be identical. To overcome this issue, you will need to have two similar cameras situated side-by-side, set to the identical settings, and triggered at the same time.

A camera mounted on a tripod or piece of wood which separates them by 3 to 4 inches can be designed. You will also need a remote trigger to capture the images from the two cameras at the same time. If the cameras are identical and can be operated by an IR remote, the same remote can be used for triggering the exposure at the same time. Else, you will need to design a wired remote using a double pole-double throw switch to do the same.

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