The most ambitious masterclass ever to be staged at IBC, the International Broadcast Convention which runs in Amsterdam until 16 September, comprised a three-part special on the production of stereoscopic 3D projects.
On 14 September the first masterclass looked at 3D basics, issues around shooting 3D, and post producing this format. Phil Streather, who produced the Imax documentary, Bugs 3D (Britain’s most successful documentary ever), made the point that a common language of 3D should be developed. “3D is an art and not an absolute science so there is foom for interpretation. We’re currently in a new wave of 3D, the old one having started in the 1950s and ending with Jaws 3D. That system used anaglyph imagery and 3D glasses with two different colour lenses.
“The system I use is based on the fact that because I have two eyes, I shoot with two lenses. However, anaglyph can still be very useful if you don’t have a huge budget. You can shoot 3D footage either on video-based or 35mm-based systems. I use the P&S Technik mirror rig, fitted with two Sony EX3 HD cameras as they are the cheapest HD cameras you can get.”
Streather explained that the rig is fitted with a mirror which divides incoming light into two streams – one goes to the camera situated at the top of the rig and the other to the camera fitted underneath it. There is a very small interaxial, ie. the distance between the two lenses. Background images should be no more than 2.5 inches apart.
He made frequest reference to innovator and filmmaker Lenny Lipton, who penned the book, The Foundations of the Stereoscopic Cinema.
The subsequent IBC sessions further delved into capturing and creating stereoscopic 3D content.