I’ve discovered a treasure trove of 3D tools. Japanese developer Muttyan has put together HUGE collection of applications for viewing and creating stereoscopic images and videos. These include side-by-side stereographs as well as anaglyphs using a variety of color and polarizing schemes.
Online since 2003, the site design looks like it’s stuck in the 1990’s, but the content is current and comprehensive, and that’s what matters.
I first stumbled onto the site looking for a way to create 3D views of Google Earth. I had wondered if there was a way to create an off-set image that could be converted to anaglyphs. I found Muttyan’s Stereo Google Earth page, and started exploring.
This page uses two instances of the Google Earth plugin to present side-by-side images of chosen locations. I started with an overhead screen capture, such as this one of downtown Greenville…
…then combined the stereoscopic images to form an anaglyph in Photoshop…
I found that some locations work better than others. Straight down seems to work better than angled, horizon shots of buildings or topography, for some reason.
Of course, I created several anaglyphs like this before I discovered that Muttyan had created an application to do it automatically. The Stereo GE Browser is a downloadable Windows application that also uses the Google Earth plugin to create 3D images. Like the web-based browser, it displays two images side-by-side. However, it also produces an anaglyph at the top of the screen. Users can select which color scheme to use for the anaglyph.
If I had found this earlier, I wouldn’t have bothered with the screen captures (although this doesn’t work with Macs.)
There are several other tool on the page that I haven’t tried, yet, such as the picture and movie makers. I’ve got my process down with Photoshop, so the picture maker isn’t of as much interest, but the movie maker might be.
One new application is the 3DSteroid app for Android. I spotted it just as I was writing this up and downloaded it on my HTC Incredible. I’m on jury duty this week, and during the break I walked out and took a few shots. I haven’t even had a chance to view these through 3D glasses.
You have to snap two images, so anything with movement won’t work. Also, it appears that it just colorizes the right and left image, rather than attempting to align them. One final drawback is that it will only do a 640X480 image due to the memory constraints of the phone. Oh well. I think I might get better results from my twin camera setup, or by using images processed in Photoshop.
Even so, there is some good stuff here, and anyone interested in 3D Photography should check out Muttyan’s applications.