3D Stereo Magic






Introduction                                                                    9

Chapter 1   The Virtual Window                                           13   

Window Violations Eliminated

Real Window vs The Virtual Window

Figure: Angled Picture Frame

Figure: Angled Picture Frame w/ Mat

Figure: Evolution

Chapter 2   Adobe Photoshop Layers Palette              18   

What is the Layers Palette?


Layers Palette Icons

Figure: Photoshop CS3 Layers Palette

Chapter 3   Combined Stereo Files                               22


Example of a Combined File

Figure: Bear Layers palette

Figure: Bear stereogram

Chapter 4  Moving the Virtual Window Forward      26 

Background Control

Using Mats to Control Effects

Minimizing Ghosting Using Zero Offset

Figure: Owl

Figure: Gold Miner

Chapter 5   Using Masks                                                       31


Making a Mask

Activating a Mask

Altering Masks

Duplicating Masks

Figure: Layers Palette, Masked Layer

Chapter 6   Extracting a 3D Object                               34

Perfecting the Edges

Blurring and Softening Edges

Magic Wand Extractions

Chapter 7   Think Outside the Window                        38

The Concept

Window Violations Rule Bent,

But Not Broken

Right and Left Edges Penetrated

How the Engine 191 Stereogram was Made

Figure: Attack

Figure: Engine 191

Figure: Warthogs

Figure: Layers palette, Engine 191

Chapter 8   3D Stereo Magic Frames, Warping Space & Reality      45                  

Trompe l’oeil

The Stereo Window Rule Avoided

Bringing the Frame Bottom Forward

Another Rule, Equal Window Widths, is Banished

Oval or Circle Receding at Right or Left

Oval or Circle Tipped Back or Forward at Top

Curled Picture Frame

Defining the Window Border With an Outline

Pseudo Phantogram

Technique Summarized

Nuts and Bolts

Figure: Bottom of Image Violates

The Stereo Window

Figure: Frame Bent Forward at Bottom

Figure: Clipping Shapes in Place

Figure: Pronghorn

 Figure: Dream Machine

Figure: The Hole in Time

Figure: Curled Up at Bottom and Top

Figure: Wolves

Figure: Maus, Pseudo Phantogram

Figure: Eagle

Figure: Peek-A-Boo

Chapter 9  Example Work Flow                           60                              

My Work Flow, a Summary


Building the Work Area

Rename the Layers and Put Them in Sets

Aligning the Images

Window Placement

Cropping and Composition


Frame Manipulations

Save for Web

Chapter 10  Making the Hypercube                    65                

Hypercube Described

Create the Work Area

Create the Masks for the Right View

Make the Back of the Cube

Make the Right and Left Sides

The Top and Bottom Masks

Create the Masks for the Left View

Testing the Stereo

Installing the Images

Installing the Image for the Back

Setting the Stereo Window

Installing the Side Images

Extracting the Overlap Area

Installing the Remaining Images

Overlapping the Outside Edge

Chapter 11  Making the “Power Windows” Stereo            82        

Create the Work Canvas

Install the Text

Add Perspective to Text

Organize the Layers

Create the Stereo Effect for the Text

Make the Red Box

Add Perspective to the Box

Create the Stereo Effect for the Red Box

Set the Point of Zero Offset

Clean-Up the Layers

Convert to Either Parallel or Cross-View

Stereo Glossary                                                                       89  




The purpose of the 3D Stereo Magic, How to Make Stereo Power Windows tutorial is to provide techniques every digital stereographer can use to create image enhancing, eye-popping, jaw-dropping window and stereo effects that make you say,

        “How’d they do that?”

On a more practical note, special frames can often be used to eliminate window violations in images which otherwise cannot be saved. A very important application applies in the creation of anaglyph images where certain frames can be used to drastically reduce ghosting in many images while, simultaneously, preventing window violations.

Any reasonably full featured image editing software, such as Photoshop, Corel’s Paint shop Pro, Gimp (a freeware), and others can be used to create the effects described.

All procedures are described for Adobe Photoshop CS3, but are known to work in all previous versions down to version 6. Even Photoshop Elements will work. If the process is different in a previous version, that is noted. This is not an instruction manual for the operation of any software, although step-by-step procedures are provided for specific applications when appropriate, particularly for Adobe Photoshop. A level of competency in stereo photography and digital stereo alignment is assumed, so firm understanding of basic concepts is assumed.

My sincere thanks to those who first explored frame manipulation, prominent among them is Hubert Becker. Then, I offer thanks to those who personally guided me over rough spots in learning to use Photoshop and gave me inspiration with their own skills with Photoshop and in the art of image and stereo frame manipulation, John Davis and Mike Ihde. Finally, thank you to Peter Blyth, who pushed me to compile my one-on-one training sessions into books and make them available to the entire stereo community.

Wishing to share that knowledge and pass the torch, so-to-speak, to others, it is my sincere hope that the information presented here will give you the renewed interest in stereo photography that it gave to me. If any single concept found here excites you and finds its way into your art, then I am well compensated.

Good luck,

Conventions Followed in This Tutorial

A.  Figures in the tutorial appear in parallel view. For those who prefer cross-view or anaglyph formats, the figures will be found in those views and in parallel view, all in full color, on the CD. All explanations will work for the creation of stereos for any viewing format preference. While the final steps given are for the production of traditional parallel view stereograms, it is assumed that those who prefer anaglyph can take two perfectly aligned stereo chips and convert them to anaglyph presentation, either in Photoshop or with a dedicated anaglyph program. Those who prefer cross-views can convert the stereogram to that view by simply swapping the chips.

The images on the CD are JPEG, organized into 6 folders; Parallel, Cross-view, Anaglyph, Chapter 10 Figures, Chapter 11 Figures, and Misc. Figures. You can view them with any viewer you choose or with a slide show program.

B.  The images (chips) are named “left” or “right” for the eye which views them. This is important to remember in cross-views where the left eye chip is on the right side.

All text and photographs are copyrighted by Michael Beech and may not be reproduced or distributed in any way without the written permission of the copyright holder.



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