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Author Topic: 2D Images which have a 3D-Look  (Read 5600 times)

jsch

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2D Images which have a 3D-Look
« on: November 13, 2007, 02:46:37 pm »

Hi,

I've read a lot about 2D images which have a 3D-look in this forum. I would like to put in, what I learned from a very skilled (old school) photographer years ago (I hope he was right, but you can test that yourself):

An image look 3D, if you look at the image under the same angle you saw the scene in real life. If you move back from the image, the angle becomes smaller and the image appears flatter. If you move closer to the image the 3D look becomes more pronounced.

To test this you need a image - not too small - with a content that looks familiar to you, best shot with 80 mm on MF or 50 mm on 35mm. Then hang it on the wall and approach it. If you are far away the image will look flat. At some point it starts to look 3D, if you come to close it has a very pronounced 3D-look.

The reason lies in human perception and the way your brain thinks how things should be. A lot of 3D perception has to do with that. For example: In real live you have 3D vision by triangulation (two eyes and the point you are looking at) in a range up to 10 meters. Every 3D impression further away comes from experience, objects where you know their sizes. And your perception can be easily fooled. Stage designers do this a lot. See the movie "Play Time" by Jacques Tati, there is a whole city built this way.

Hope that is true and you can verify this with the little experiment I described above.

Best,
Johannes

P.S.: That also describes why telephoto images look flat and wide angles look very 3D under usual circumstances - they narrow or widen the angle. But, you can make a large print and choose the right distance and even tele shots look 3D or wide angle shots look flat.
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EricWHiss

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« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2007, 05:20:46 pm »

Thanks for posting this....all makes sense to me but I would not have thought about it in this way.
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uaiomex

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« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2007, 06:10:12 pm »

Theory:
I've noticed that when looking through binoculars that have front elements more spread apart than human eyes, everything looks hyper 3D.

I have this theory that bigger formats have more 3D than smaller formats because they have the size that approaches or meets the distance between human eyes.

Just another crazy theory of me.

Regards
Eduardo
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Ray

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« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2007, 01:29:59 am »

Quote
The reason lies in human perception and the way your brain thinks how things should be. A lot of 3D perception has to do with that. For example: In real live you have 3D vision by triangulation (two eyes and the point you are looking at) in a range up to 10 meters. Every 3D impression further away comes from experience, objects where you know their sizes. And your perception can be easily fooled. Stage designers do this a lot. See the movie "Play Time" by Jacques Tati, there is a whole city built this way.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=152491\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I'm convinced that shallow DoF also plays a significant role in enhancing the 3-D effect, but (perhaps?) not so shallow that one cannot easily recognise the subjects that are OoF.

If you are trying to fool the eye, as in the movie set, by placing different sized objects in the same plane, such as a small model of a skyscraper next to a large model of a skyscraper, it might help to make one of them slightly out of focus. By doing so, any hint that the two buildings are really in the same plane and that the eye is perhaps being fooled, is dispelled because the brain knows you can't have in the same 2-dimensional plane two objects, one of which is out of focus.

It would be interesting to experiment with various effects. For example, a portrait taken with a long telephoto lens against a backdrop of mountain scenery. The mountain is going to look very close because it's been magnified by the lens. In fact it can appear to be just a few metres behind the subject when in fact it's several kilometres away.

Supposing we take one shot at f40 so the background mountain is as sharp (or as unsharp, depending on sensor size I suppose) as the subject and another shot at f11 which puts the mountain noticeably OoF and at the same time increases the sharpness of the subject.

Which shot will have the greater appearance of 3-dimensionality?
« Last Edit: November 14, 2007, 01:43:32 am by Ray »
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Morgan_Moore

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« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2007, 02:44:28 am »

Depth of field does affect the sense of scale in an image

Has anyone seen the series of baseball shot tilt and shift it really messes wsith ones sense of scale..

some of them here



Actually a lot IMO for realistic appearance is about shooting a suject from the distance we are 'used' to viewing it at

So people  could be shot from 1-4 meters a 'sociable distance' - but baseball probably looks wrong from 1-4 meters because we are used to looking at it from the touchline. Flying Planes proably look a bit wierd shot with a wide becuae we are used seeing them from afar too .....

S
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Ray

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« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2007, 05:23:18 am »

Quote
In real world 3D this is the same: Just hold something at arms length and focus your eye to it. The background becomes blurry. If you focus (your eye) on the background the object in your hand becomes blurry.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=152646\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

That's true but with one important distinction. In the real world we cannot focus on something that is out of focus. As soon as we attempt to do so, it springs back into focus almost immediately.

With the camera we have this relatively new phenomena where out-of-focusness can be recorded and then viewed with fully focussed eyes, and qualities such as bokeh, for example, can be examined.

When the eye takes in a scene, it will flit from side to side, and with each shift of the gaze everything's in focus. In a photo of the same scene, it's possible that parts of the image will be OoF and there's nothing the viewer can do to bring those parts back into focus. They are and remain out of focus because they were, in the original real world scene, either nearer or farther than something else in the scene that was in focus.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2007, 05:50:37 am by Ray »
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Ray

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« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2007, 05:49:53 am »

Quote
Depth of field does affect the sense of scale in an image

Has anyone seen the series of baseball shot tilt and shift it really messes wsith ones sense of scale..

some of them here
Actually a lot IMO for realistic appearance is about shooting a suject from the distance we are 'used' to viewing it at

So people  could be shot from 1-4 meters a 'sociable distance' - but baseball probably looks wrong from 1-4 meters because we are used to looking at it from the touchline. Flying Planes proably look a bit wierd shot with a wide becuae we are used seeing them from afar too .....

S
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=152647\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

That first baseball shot with the OoF spectators in the stadium is perhaps an example of how the 3-D effect is diminished in a small image. My eye was first attracted to the large OoF mass or mess with lots of little circles before I noticed a few small figures in the bottom left corner.

However, the lower image despite being small, does impart a great sense of 3-dimensionality which I suggest is due to those OoF parts in both the foreground and the background. The fact that some of that baggage in the foreground on the far left is out of focus, despite also appearing to be in the same plane as the figures on the right which are very much in focus, is a little weird, or shall we say novel, but still contributes to the heightened sense of 3-D, perhaps because they are still some distance away from the in-focus figures.
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Morgan_Moore

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« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2007, 06:41:27 am »

Quote
That first baseball shot with the OoF spectators in the stadium is perhaps an example of how the 3-D effect is diminished in a small image. My eye was first attracted to the large OoF mass or mess with lots of little circles before I noticed a few small figures in the bottom left corner.

However, the lower image despite being small, does impart a great sense of 3-dimensionality which I suggest is due to those OoF parts in both the foreground and the background. The fact that some of that baggage in the foreground on the far left is out of focus, despite also appearing to be in the same plane as the figures on the right which are very much in focus, is a little weird, or shall we say novel, but still contributes to the heightened sense of 3-D, perhaps because they are still some distance away from the in-focus figures.
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My point about these images is that to me they look like 'toy size' people

so the DOF and circle of confusion is affecting the percived sense of scale

maybe that is off this topic

S
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EricWHiss

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« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2007, 11:58:04 pm »

Quote
Depth of field does affect the sense of scale in an image

Has anyone seen the series of baseball shot tilt and shift it really messes wsith ones sense of scale..

some of them here
Actually a lot IMO for realistic appearance is about shooting a suject from the distance we are 'used' to viewing it at

So people  could be shot from 1-4 meters a 'sociable distance' - but baseball probably looks wrong from 1-4 meters because we are used to looking at it from the touchline. Flying Planes proably look a bit wierd shot with a wide becuae we are used seeing them from afar too .....

S
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Yes, I've seen those images and know exactly what you mean. Tilt/shift images always get that toy model feeling. Why is that? I mean why do we interpret them as being small diorama's?  Is it because when we get in that close to a toy subject our own eye's DOF becomes tiny?
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Morgan_Moore

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« Reply #9 on: November 15, 2007, 12:50:18 am »

Quote
Yes, I've seen those images and know exactly what you mean. Tilt/shift images always get that toy model feeling. Why is that? I mean why do we interpret them as being small diorama's?  Is it because when we get in that close to a toy subject our own eye's DOF becomes tiny?
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Or becasue weve learned over time that photographs of small things have less DOF
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Sam Morgan Moore Bristol UK

EricWHiss

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« Reply #10 on: November 15, 2007, 01:37:45 am »

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Or becasue weve learned over time that photographs of small things have less DOF
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I doubt that , because the effect seems to be universal - but I do get your point and think its valid in other examples of learned visual rhetoric such as a scene lit with blue gels on the lights means the scene is supposedly at night time.
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Ray

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« Reply #11 on: November 15, 2007, 02:16:01 am »

I'm not sure what you are getting at regarding the toy model appearance. Perhaps that's because I haven't seen large prints of these baseball images. Are you saying that even in large prints these figures would look like toy models?

The obvious reason to me why they might look like toy models is that the figures really are small and, as seen here, are in a very small image.

As regards 3-D effect, the lower image is outstanding, perhaps due more to the lighting than the OoF parts on the left.
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Fritzer

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« Reply #12 on: November 15, 2007, 11:26:12 am »

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That's true but with one important distinction. In the real world we cannot focus on something that is out of focus. As soon as we attempt to do so, it springs back into focus almost immediately.

With the camera we have this relatively new phenomena where out-of-focusness can be recorded and then viewed with fully focussed eyes, and qualities such as bokeh, for example, can be examined.

When the eye takes in a scene, it will flit from side to side, and with each shift of the gaze everything's in focus. In a photo of the same scene, it's possible that parts of the image will be OoF and there's nothing the viewer can do to bring those parts back into focus. They are and remain out of focus because they were, in the original real world scene, either nearer or farther than something else in the scene that was in focus.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=152666\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Which is one of the most sensible statements re. depth of field I've ever seen  .
People tend to forget how much visual information the brain is able to process in just a splitsecond, and without it being a conscious effort.
Even the smallest items don't have a limited dof for the brain, it's just a virtual reality created by the limitations of photography; the eye sees whatever it chooses to see and the brain puts together the pieces at will.
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Morgan_Moore

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« Reply #13 on: November 15, 2007, 01:58:16 pm »

Quote
Which is one of the most sensible statements re. depth of field I've ever seen  .
People tend to forget how much visual information the brain is able to process in just a splitsecond, and without it being a conscious effort.
Even the smallest items don't have a limited dof for the brain, it's just a virtual reality created by the limitations of photography; the eye sees whatever it chooses to see and the brain puts together the pieces at will.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=153081\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I thnk eyes do have quite narrow dof

In fact I can see my own dof changing in sunny weather !

Obviously when looking we refocus fast on the bits of a scene we are interested in

But when we are looking at something like a person we are focused (both mentally and physically) on the person

Hense a prtrait with narrow DOF can represtent our 'experiecee' of that person

f22 isnt alwats more 'true'

S
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Ray

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« Reply #14 on: November 15, 2007, 07:38:39 pm »

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I thnk eyes do have quite narrow dof

In fact I can see my own dof changing in sunny weather !

Obviously when looking we refocus fast on the bits of a scene we are interested in

But when we are looking at something like a person we are focused (both mentally and physically) on the person

Hense a prtrait with narrow DOF can represtent our 'experiecee' of that person

f22 isnt alwats more 'true'

S
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It's true the eye has a very narrow field of vision and one seems to be able to focus only on a relatively small area at one time, so in a sense a full size head portrait with eyes in focus but ears and tip of nose out of focus might be close to what one would see if one were looking at a person directly in the eye from a close distance.

However, if one were looking at a life size print of that same person from the same distance, which had been taken at f22 so that ears, nose and the entire face was equally in focus, then the same principle would apply. Because of the eye's narrow field of vision, if you focus on the eyes in the portrait, the tip of the nose and the ears on the portrait are out of focus. But at least you have the option of creating your own 'out-of-focus' areas.

In a sense you get a dozen or more portraits combined. One portrait with one ear sharply in focus and the rest of the face OoF. Another portrait with the left eye sharply in focus and the rest of the face OoF, and yet another with that sprout of hair on the tip of the nose in sharp focus and the rest of the face OoF, and so on.

Now that's what I call value for money   .
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