If you are interested in creating your own 3D stereoscopic/anaglyph
pictures, try our easy to use Stereoptica program out.

Red/green pictures via 3D glasses
+ true stereoscopic pictures...

Before you go any further, fetch those specs that have been lying dormant in that drawer for months - for at last they'll come in handy. For those who haven't a clue what I'm talking about, '3D' specs are a pair of coloured lenses - which help you to see the 3D graphics such as the ones shown on this page. They're usually available as freebies stuck to magazines or available in breakfast cereal boxes.
If you haven't got any specs, then there are some stereoscopic pictures further down the page, but you'll need a keen eye to see those in 3D.

This first one is the easiest way of telling if you are seeing in 3D:

In late 2009, I discovered a formula which helped create a 3D version of the Mandelbrot fractal - the result being the awesome Mandelbulb. More recently, I made a 3D version of it. If you have anaglyph glasses, try the first one. Otherwise cross your eyes to see the second one...


Tube Of Illusion v2

The Tube Of Illusion is back with a vengeance, and it's bigger, more colorful and illusive than ever before. . . .

If you don't possess any 3D anaglyph glasses, then you can try crossing your eyes with this one instead. It takes practise (try focussing on something near you - you should see 3 tubes ), but the results are definitely worth it! Also try this site for practise.

If you want to see the stunning video of the above picture (and some great never-seen-before optical illusions), then please take a look here.

Older (but still cool) stuff

Click here for all these pics (and lots more!) at full size

Note that if all these surrounding pics don't look quite right (they should go into the screen - not
come out of), try reversing your specs - that should do the trick.
Click the above link for cool wireframe 'bob sleigh' pictures and other 3D designs.

It's a shame they rarely do the red/blue glasses, because these would be more effective. The reason they would be more effective is because the monitor green element is not very pure - containing contamination of the other two primaries (quite a bit of red and a little blue). This means that the red see-through plastic in the lenses is not entirely filtering out the 'green' pixel light on screen. For those more interested in the universal green problem on monitors, see the Light and Colour Trivia page.

3D Tunnel! (needs 3d glasses).
If you want to see a much better, smoother version of this tunnel, then download this AVI movie.

True stereoscopic pics

It's very rare that you'll get the other type of stereoscopic 3D, which is strange, considering the format has so much to offer. For example, images can be in full colour and aren't restricted to the usual wireframe scenario. Obviously, it's harder to see the effect properly, but if you can persevere, the results are spectacular. Before you attempt to view the images in this section, see if you can first see the picture below in 3D (remember, you can't use 3D glasses for this). You're meant to cross your eyes to get the left/right pictures to 'merge' into each other. Try to focus in front of the screen. If you're having difficulty, then try putting your finger in between your eyes and the screen.
First look at your finger, and then shift your gaze to the screen. You're aiming to get both of the crystal images to slide 'into' each other - to form a third, 3D image between them.
If you're still stuck and you really want to see the illusion, try this site to help practise seeing 3-D stereo.
Give it your best shot. If you can manage it, your reward is a ticket into the gallery which is achieved by clicking on this crystal pic!

Back to the old 3D specs method, here's something interesting. Take a look through your 3d glasses at these two pictures. The left pic demonstrates the original picture with red on the left and cyan on the right. With your specs the right way round, this should look as though the biggest text is closest. Which is does - fine so far. But now, take a look at the right picture - here, the cyan colour is on the left and the red is on the right. Logically, this should make it look as though the biggest text is further in the background - but it doesn't! A real mystery - see if you can work it out. It took me a while.

Related Skytopia web pages:

  • Stereoptica program - - - Create your own 3D images from two photographs using this unique program!
  • Tube Complex - - - The main gallery's Tube Complex (ray-traced pictures).
  • Dynamic Optical Illusions - - - View a collection of old, new and exclusive optical illusions, and see the best voted illusion of all time - The Eclipse of Mars.
  • Rotating Cube tutorial - - - Learn how to program a spinning, moving cube in 3D. The code can easily be expanded for any 3D object.
  • Light and Colour Trivia - - - Contains a section on 3D. Also find out why yellow and blue doesn't make green..

    Offsite links of interest:

  • Rainbow Symphony - A unique site with a great 3D gallery, shop and plenty of other 3D related stuff.
  • 3DWonderStuff - All sorts of cool stuff on this page, but see the brilliant collection of 3D animations and images. They're like those 3d random dot stereograms (RDS), but much better, because there are no dots, and they're in full colour!

  • Burning Life 2005 - Some nice stereoscopic pics here in both cross-eyed and wall-eyed format.

  • Rosette Nebula in 3D - Lovely 3D stereoscopic render of this nebula.

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    All pictures and text on this page are copyright 2002 onwards D. White.