Having Fun with 3D Mirrorless Photography

Today’s Post by Mark Toal

The basic idea behind 3D photographs is to make two identical photos as far apart as your eyes and then view them in a way that makes them look three dimensional. Fuji and Panasonic made dedicated 3D point-and-shoot cameras but you can use your Micro Four-thirds camera to create 3D images too.

panasonic-3D-Lens-LUMIX-G-12.5mm

Panasonic made the Lumix G 12.5mm 3D Lens that has two lens to record a left and right image by using half of the sensor for each photo. The camera  combines the images to make a single 3D file with the extension .MPO. This means you can shoot 3D without worrying about subject movement. The drawback is that the lens is an f/12 at about 65mm equivalents) and you’ll need to be outdoors  and not be too close to your subject. These lenses can be found on eBay.

3D gears-MToal

Olympus cameras have a 3D mode that guides you to make two photos using any lens. Ideally the photos should be about 3-5 inches apart and the camera needs to be held as straight and level as possible. The camera combines the images to create a single .MPO file. The benefit to this is that you can use different lenses but your subject must stay still since the photos are taken at slightly different times.

3D glasses

The easiest and best method is to plug the camera into a 3D TV. On Panasonic 3D TV’s you can also plug the SD card into the slot in the TV and use the built in viewer. You can also download the amazing piece of free Windows-only Stereo Photo Maker that lets you to open the MPO file and extract the left and right JPEG files. You can then save them as a  Anaglyphic file that can be viewed on your computer with traditional red/blue 3D glasses available at Amazon.com TipL Joe runs the software on his iMac using Apple’s Boot Camp and Windows 7.

If you already have a pair of red/blue glasses check out my blog of 3D photos at http://marktoal3d.wordpress.com. You can see some of Joe’s 3D Photography: here.