Ray Zone will always be with us in 3D

Ray Zone
Ray Zone, kindly patriarch of 3D, passed away recently at age 65. I took this stereo picture of him at our annual NSA meeting in 2011, where he always served up heaping doses of his inspiration and education on all things 3D. We were fortunate to know him, and to have his creativity & passion spice up our lives. To say we will greatly miss him is an understatement.
Here’s a 3D tribute to him on flickr
Some personal comments
Ray’s own website

Moe Howard of the Three Stooges was a 3D photographer!

While reading a book on The Three Stooges recently (never let it be said that I don’t pursue academic interests), I came across a nice offstage view of Moe Howard and his wife Helen walking arm-in-arm, enjoying a little time off from a comedy tour he was on in the early 1950s:
Moe & Helen & Realist
Besides being a great picture, there was nothing to notice out of the ordinary, but what caught my eye before turning the page was the shape of the camera case he’s holding. It looked suspiciously long, like perhaps it might hold a stereo 3D camera!  Time to investigate…
Moe's Realist (close-up)
Upon closer inspection, I realized that the stitching & leather pattern is identical to one I own, my trusty Stereo Realist. To verify this, I contacted Moe’s son Paul, a wonderfully talented caricature artist whose work & information can be found on his website Caricatures By Paul. He told me that his father did indeed shoot some family & recreational photos in 3D stereo. Here’s a 3D still of Moe in action from one of only two 3D shorts the Stooges filmed, “Spooks”:
3D Moe eye poke

3D Shuttle on Crawler

3D Shuttle on Crawler
A few years back, we filmed the roll-out of shuttle Discovery, champion workhorse of the space program. Following the crawler out to the launch pad took all day, but that allowed me plenty of time to try some 3D shots, letting the shuttle’s slow movement do the lateral displacement.

“Prometheus” in 3D

I really enjoyed “Prometheus”, and seeing it in 3D is HIGHLY recommended. It’s nice to see a film shot in native 3D for a change. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad there’s so many movies coming out in 3D these days, but plenty of it is converted-from-2D, which leaves much to be desired in terms of a quality image. While I have seen a few excellent conversions, you quickly see the difference in “Prometheus”, where you can make out every drop of sweat standing out on an actor’s brow!

NSA convention 2012

NSA 2012 logo 3D
Getting ready to attend this year’s convention in Costa Mesa, CA on July 23rd-30th… the only place for fans of all things 3D. This year I will be premiering my showcase “Real Titanic 3D”, featuring never-before-seen actual stereo images of the great ship! For all the information, go to www.3d-con.com, and to join the National Stereoscopic Association, visit www.stereoworld.org

Edge of the Glacier in 3D

glacial waterfalls in hyperstereo 3D
Off the coast of Alaska, I waited for the boat to drift a little ways between the two exposures, allowing me to get a “hyperstereo” photo, where the distance between the lenses (your eyes) gives you the perspective of a giant, allowing you to see with greater depth, at the expense of making everything look smaller. For example, the edge of this glacier is over 500 feet high, but appears smaller here in 3D. If I had used a ‘normal’ stereo spacing (around 3 inches), you would not see any depth in the landscape at all, because it is so far away. But instead, you can actually make out every contour of the rock in 3D, even seeing the waterfall come away from the surface in places. Hyperstereos allow you to see the world from a larger point of view, and that’s always a good thing!

Artists in Action (in 3D)

Scrambled Beans
A couple years ago, at our favorite art & music festival, two excellent artists finally worked together onstage (first time to my knowledge). Keith “Scramble” Campbell and Bean Spence are amazing in their own right, but seeing them combine forces on a single painting was a real treat. They were capturing a musical artist live as they performed onstage; when the set is finished, so is the portrait. I’ve enjoyed both of these talented artists’ work for many years, so it was a real treat to see them collaborate on a single work of art. I got them to pose for me in 3D, and perfectly captured the spirit in this shot. To discover more of their work, go to: