Three Dimensions

6 June, 2005 at 9:19 pm (benjamin)

Well, that only took seven hours.

In the same vein as my previous post about Clutter, I was about to embark upon a massive project to catalogue all of my CDs, DVDs, and books. I had previously catalogued all of my DVDs using DVD Profiler, but as it is an IBM-only program, I am no longer able to maintain a current and accurate collect profile. Then Dan Evans introduced me to Delicious Library, a program that works with Amazon to translate bardcode numbers into a virtual bookshelf. It’s not the most useful thing in the world, except perhaps for fire insurance purposes, but it’s lovely to look at and a fun way to while away the idle computer hours.

However, I can’t afford to buy a software license at the moment, as I am only one-fifth of the way through The New Poverty, which is how I’m referring to my current financial affairs, affairs I expect to last until the end of October. So my original plans of happily puttering about the apartment, typing in barcode numbers by the convenient armload, are temporarily on hold.

Due to the oncoming incidence of a 3-D film festival at the Coolidge Cinema in Boston, my interest in View-Masters, the Loreo-3D camera, and all things stereographic has recently resurfaced, so I decided a good alternate computer activity would be to learn the process of making a flat image into a 3-D anaglyph.
The traditional 'Ben and Pete RAWK!' photo
1) I began with the traditional Ben and Pete RAWK! photo, the trademark image of The Brothel. I altered it slightly so that Ben and Pete were both wearing Red/Blue 3-D glasses, specifically the glasses provided to patrons of the recent Spy Kids: 3-D film.The alteration of the image, and the first stage completed
2) Using the instructions provided by Jim Long, I worked on separating the original image into layers of depth. Mr. Long recommends editing the image and closing the gaps layer by layer, but after some experimentation, I found that it was easier to do all the editing in one go. So the image on the left is the shifted image with all the gaps. 3) The image on the right is the image with the shifts filled in. It’s a little difficult at the reduced size to see exactly what the changes have wrought, but compare Image #1 and Image #3; if you look at the position of the RAWK! hands and the faces, it’s as if the camera has taken two steps to the left.
The alteration of the background, and the second stage completed
On my first attempt, I continued shifting the image to the right by one pixel, layer by layer, until I had pushed the foreground image completely off the screen. This seemed like a bad idea somehow, as I didn’t think that my outstretched RAWK! hand would look very 3-D if its cyan shadow wasn’t even in the frame. So instead of a full thirty-layer shift, Image #3 is only half of the process, and is just the shifting of Pete and Ben in the foreground. 4) I then proceded to shift the background to the left, having masked off the foreground figures and copied them to a separate layer. This, then, is the shifted background with the landscape interpolated and filled in. 5) is the masked right-shifted figures pasted back onto the left-shifted background. Image #5 was then combined with Image #1 using a freeware piece of Mac software called Anaglyph Maker, producing the following image:
Pete and Ben, RAWK!ing in 3-D.  Red/Cyan glasses required.

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