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Velusion 11-30-2017 07:07 PM

stereoscopic 3D images and video
It seems that 3D movies have once again died a tragic death but about a year before Avatar came out, I was betting that 3D was going to be here to stay. All of the larger theater chains upgraded their equipment and screens. Software developers were working as fast as they could to create the tool for stereo 3D. Blu-ray had stereoscopic built into it's standard. TVs and Blu-ray players were all there........ But nobody wanted to wear the glasses :lol:

Anyway, I have spent the past 5 or 7 years learning all I could find out about stereoscopy. One of the things I learned right away is that a majority of the people making 3D movie content did not understand what they were doing. They broke some of the most fundamental rules and delivered images that created tremendous eye strain on the view.. The people making 3D pictures (single images) were doing a much better job in most cases. They seemed to understand the process better than film makers.

The easiest and most accessible way to show 3D pictures to most people is to make anaglyph 3D pictures. Those are the one you have to wear red and cyan glasses to view. Here is one that I made.
Attachment 732

You can buy inexpensive cardboard anaglyph glasses on Don't buy the more expensive hard plastic anaglyph glasses. You might think that more expensive is better but this is one of the rare cases in life where cheaper IS actually better..... The plastic glasses have lenses that are too thick. They block too much light. The cardboard ones are perfect! Remember Red and Cyan. There are other colors available but red and cyan are the standard that nearly eveyone on the planet uses.

Here is one more that I made. This ones is CGI: View this one from at least 2 feet away (with the glasses on). The farther away, the more the skull comes out of the screen!

Attachment 734

The other way to view these images that doesn't require special equipment is something called cross eyed 3D.
Here is an example I made:

Attachment 733

You simply look at the picture and cross your eyes. You will see 3 images, look at the one in the middle... Give your eyes a few seconds to relax when looking at the picture. After that, they will stay focused on the center image naturally.

If anyone wants to discuss stereoscopic 3D images and how to create them, chime in. I love this stuff. Maybe I can help you not make the mistakes that most people make.

jax_rox 11-30-2017 08:44 PM

3D has come a long way, and is still in use in cinemas a little, though it’s fizzled out for home viewing.
I wouldn’t think that people who make high budget 3D movies ‘don’t know what they’re doing’ and in fact much planning and consideration goes into ensuring the 3D looks right and also doesn’t cause eye strain. I would suggest it’s much easier to make a single frame of 3D ‘work’ than it is 24 frames per second for 7,200 seconds... (that’s 172,800 frames and that’s not even taking into account movement and interpolation...)

Personally I think 3D has a future, though it may not necessarily be for blockbuster films. Wildlife documentaries or more immersive style films and experiences may be a better fit. It’s still rather cost-prohibitive on a big scale, and anyway VR has kind-of surpassed it to a large extent for that ‘immersive’ feeling. The next step is probably 3D VR which I think sounds very cool (though probably very expensive to make).

Unfortunately I don’t own any 3D glasses nor can I cross my eyes so I can’t check out your examples.

Velusion 11-30-2017 09:07 PM

It's true that 3D has come a long way but never assume that just because a production has money that means they know what they are doing ;) . 3D movies being made now still "break the frame" with total disregard. They disregard scale and they continue to edit for a 2D presentation even though doing so does nothing to enhance the 3Dness of the movie. In fact, it hurts it...... I could write about this all night but I'd rather let it unfold naturally if anyone wants to talk in detail about stereoscopy. But I will say this; there is no difference between making a single 3D image and shooting 3D video. I've done both and they both use the same 3D window.

What is a 3D window?
What is parallax?
What is divergence?
What is Inter-occular distance?
What is Point of Convergence?
What is inside the frame, outside the frame, on the screen?
What is a 3D standard and how can it be calculated?

These questions and more are all very real questions that must be understood in order to make good and impactful 3D images/video. I have written a book on the subject. The text is complete but I need time to finish the illustrations and drawings. I would love to teach indie film makers these things...

If 3D has a future I think it will hinge upon the glasses free tv sets that are now being developed. 3D TV that does not require glasses. Most of the systems being developed use a lenticular lens over the screen which refracts the left and right image to the left and right eye, thus creating the 3D sensation without glasses. The key for these tvs to work is having 4K monitors that are sharp and also devising a way to have the most number of viewing zones in the room to watch the 3D movie from. The problem with lenticulars is that if you move horizontally you will pass from one viewing zone to another which will make the video look like it shifted.... Did you ever look at a 3D poster that uses a lenticular lens or a Blu-ray box for a 3D movie? The lenticular lens is what directs the left and right image to your left and right eye but, next time you get a chance to look at one, notice that if you move from side to side, the image breaks or seems to shift.....

Anyway, 3D glasses-free tvs are on the way. it might be a time when indie film makers can have a real shot at distribution that pays. Streaming providers will be screaming for content!! but not shitty content. The 3D must be good... Nobody wants to risk destroying the market by flooding it with crappy 3D.

jax_rox 11-30-2017 10:09 PM


Originally Posted by Velusion (Post 431378)
These questions and more are all very real questions that must be understood in order to make good and impactful 3D images/video.

I don't doubt you're very knowledgable on the subject. But I can assure you that every single one of those questions (and more) are addressed with every 3D movie that gets made. I can tell you with absolute confidence that no-one makes 3D movies (at least budgeted ones) without considering every single thing you've talked about. Keep in mind that many productions release in both 2D and 3D and therefore are constrained somewhat to what they can do depending on their budget and timing. Some productions do/have also done the 3D conversion in post, which adds a whole different element.

The people that generally work on these types of higher budgeted productions are specialists with at least as much, but probably much more knowledge about it than you. I'm not saying that doesn't mean you're not knowledgable on the subject at all. But don't just assume that because something may be out of whack, it was done so due to incompetence.

It's like when I see an out of focus image on screen on a $50million movie. There are many possible reasons for that shot being out of focus, and there are many possible reasons why it found it's way into the film. But I know that incompetence of the Focus Puller or editor will almost definitely not be the reason.

I'm not an expert in 3D capture, but having worked on some decently-budgeted 3D productions and talking with Cinematographers who have shot highly budgeted 3D productions, I would suggest the logistics of having two camera systems (along with lenses and everything) calibrated and matched and electronically controlled just so to get the inter-ocular and parallax and divergence etc. as wanted is, at best, a bit more complicated than getting a still image to look right, even if the fundamentals are the same.

As far as 3Ds future, I personally think that even glasses-free 3D is too much of a gimmick. It might have some success in the way that glasses-3D did for home viewing, but I don't know that people really want to watch 3D movies and television at home regardless of whether they have to wear glasses or not.

I could be wrong.

Velusion 12-01-2017 09:18 AM

I really didn't start this thread to argue with you, Jax. I simply wanted to start a conversation with people who want to talk about stereoscopy or who have questions about the processes.

The thing is this, jax, if you take some time to learn about stereoscopy you will find out that the term "expert" is subjective. Someone I revere and consider an expert might very well be someone who other "experts" do not agree with.

Stereo vison is very very simply; a scene being viewed from 2 different angles. Your brain merges the images and uses the parallax between features in the image to establish depth.

Stereoscopy is equally simply; recording a scene from two different angles then presenting the 2 different angle images so that the left eye sees only the left image and the right eye sees only the right image. There are, of course, considerations when taking these 2 pictures (stereo pairs) but aside from those considerations, It really is that simple.

Now, the place where disagreement comes into play has nothing to do with the basic process of capturing 3D images or video. The disagreements come into play over the philosophy of the practitioner, and in some cases, their stubbornness. As an example: there are those who believe the inner-occular distance between the 2 taking lenses in a 3D camera MUST be 2 inches apart because human eyes are 2 inches apart while others believe that inter-occular distance can be used as a variable and adjusted according to the scene being photographed... Both ways work even though the rationalization of one way over the other may not be sound..... But, I-Never-Said- Anyone-Was-Incompetent! Please don't ever put words in my mouth.

Anyway, I happen to believe in 3D photography/video and I happen to believe that indie film makers can also make 3D movies.

jax_rox 12-01-2017 05:16 PM

I don’t want to argue either, and in fact my intention is not to argue but to clarify. I know plenty of fantastic technicians who work or have worked in 3D capture and not one ‘doesn’t know what they’re doing’ but the realities of the logistics of one particular shoot or philosophies and decisions from the Director or their own experience dictate decisions that are made. Disagreeing with an expert does not necessarily mean you are correct, and also does not necessarily mean that they ‘don’t know what they are doing’ as you suggested the majority of people capturing 3D movies don’t.

I’d love to hear about ways indie filmmakers can access 3D capture, because as far as I can tell there is an inherent cost prohibition that stems from the fact that you need two calibrated and controllable cameras and lenses, ideally with their angles (and possibly inter-ocular distance) adjustable. You can’t use auto-focus, for example.

I agree with you that the fundamental idea of capturing a 3D image is the same for both video and image. It seems to me that the logistics of capturing a moving image with all the creative input over parallax and divergence and inter-ocular etc. is much more difficult to achieve. You can use one of those 3D handycams but then you lose all that control. Similarly, monitoring on-set would require at least a 3D television and a way to take the two camera feeds and overlay them in a way the tv requires... and may require an extra person who can monitor the 3D effect over and above the performance and continuity that the Director and Script Supervisor already monitor.

I may be wrong; I’d love to hear about how an indie filmmaker can access 3D.

I’d also love to hear about what high budget 3D productions could do to make the experience better, and why they may have had to choose the path they did, other than simply implying they all ‘don’t know what they’re doing’.

Velusion 12-01-2017 06:19 PM

Comparison is a part of teaching and learning; the techniques I believe in compared to the techniques they obviously believe in.... What boggles my mind is that you are so determined to defend 3D film makers considering that you are not one of them. I don't feel I have anything to prove to you. I came here simply to share what I have learned over the years with other indie film makers. I wasn't expecting to be challenged by a non-practitioner the second I dared to talk. I simply started this thread by saying "a majority of the people making 3D movie content did not understand what they were doing" and I stand by that. I never said they are incompetent. I never said they are doing it wrong. I simply said they do not understand, and your defense for them is that they have better equipment than me and more money therefore they are right and I am wrong.. wow..

Yes, I was planning on explaining my position. Obviously I think I'm right otherwise I would not go to the trouble.

I really wasn't expecting this. Not at all... and not from a moderator of this board. As far as I'm concerned, this thread is closed.

WalterB 12-01-2017 06:23 PM

The 2009 hype has died almost completely except for blockbusters.
In the past I had horrible experiences with 3D: eye strain, headache, seeing double, but The Force Awakens and Beauty and the Beast were done pretty well: it was a great experience.

So the 4th or 5th wave of 3D is sticking around longer than every other attempt in the past.
It can be cool, but it is difficultto produce AND: although the screen is 2D, we can create the illusion of depth without stereoscopic images: perspective, paralax, relative sizes, foreground vs background, bokeh, light, color, haze, fog: they all help to submerge the viewer into a different world. Eventhough it is less extreme and confusing than stereoscopic VR.

indietalk 12-01-2017 08:24 PM

Hey Velusion, have a beer man it's Friday. It's all good in the hood.

Velusion 12-01-2017 10:19 PM

Yeah... You're right. Cheers! :cheers:

directorik 12-02-2017 11:44 AM

Something I've learned;

When you post something here expecting to not be challenged you will
be disappointed. Here you will find people with differing opinions. Expecting
them to not challenge you is unrealistic. One does not post in a vacuum

As a non-practitioner of 3D filmmaking I, too, have questions and challenges
but I guess I shouldn't ask or comment. To me that makes this great forum
a little less informative.

indietalk 12-02-2017 01:20 PM

Ask away, Velusion is cool peeps, everyone has a bad day, I'm sure he will welcome more comments.

Velusion 12-04-2017 04:00 PM

That's right; Velusion is cool :) and besides, this thread went south only because it was misinterpreted.

Before moving on, re-read from the beginning. I never said anyone didn't know what they were doing. I said the didn't understand what they were doing. Big difference. I didn't even catch the reading error that jax was clinging to until today.

I don't mind being challenged. I love defending my position, just make sure the thing you are challenging is real and not the product of not being able to read...ok? :)

So, with that out of the way, let's talk 3D :cool:

jax_rox 12-04-2017 06:24 PM


Originally Posted by Velusion (Post 431486)
That's right; Velusion is cool :)

Of course - and only cooler after a few beers :)


Originally Posted by Velusion (Post 431486)
I said the didn't understand what they were doing. Big difference.

I stand by what I said. There's a difference between having a different outlook and philosophy around what you're doing and literally not understanding the concepts of it.

I think you'd find that there aren't many making big budget 3D movies that literally don't understand what they're doing, but as with anything when it comes to movie-making, logistics of the shoot, budget, time pressures, as well as different philosophies, different interpretations and different experience dictate the decisions that are made much moreso than any specific lack of understanding.


Originally Posted by Velusion (Post 431486)
So, with that out of the way, let's talk 3D :cool:

I'm keen to hear about how indie and low-budget filmmakers can access 3D capture :)

Velusion 12-04-2017 06:35 PM

jax, In the posts to come I will explain what I set out to discuss. I think you'll find out quickly that I'm not an egomaniac and I don't claim to know everything.

What is the value of 3D in a movie? is it just a gimmick or is it's value really in its potential to create an immersive experience for the viewer. In the past it was just a gimmick and certainly today film makers still take advantage of the way people enjoy having an arrow come flying out of the screen but more than that, today, film makers claim to aspire to create an immersive experience,,, at least that is what they claim.

An immersive experience. THAT is what my 3D philosophy is built around and THAT is what I claim today's 3D film makers are missing. They do not understand what it is they are doing, or trying to do. They are failing to create an immersive experience.

Jax, that's all I wanted to say when I started this thread. :yes:

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