posted October 09, 2007 05:15 AM
Glad you enjoyed the gloves. In response to the questions here and via email -
It's a time consuming process but not beyond the capabilities of anyone who can use a digital camera and Photoshop. The most time consuming part is capturing all the imagery - the creation of the VR itself is very simple with the appropriate software (I used VR Worx).
I shot the gloves against a black velvet background, resting on a record player as the turntable. The record player was also covered with black velvet that I cut to fit. Then I set up a few lamps to light the glove and mounted the camera on a tripod. It's important to use manual focus and aperture settings to make sure the photos all match up; relying on your camera's auto settings will result in variations in brightness and focal length between shots.
Then you simply start taking photos, rotating the glove 10 degrees between each shot. The turntable I was using had a dot pattern around the edge; by counting the dots and dividing by 36 I got how many dots equalled 10 degrees. DO NOT KNOCK THE TRIPOD, TURNTABLE OR GLOVE DURING THIS PART! Trust me on this one... The other thing to watch is that the centre of your item is absolutely centred on the turntable. Otherwise the glove will flail from side-to-side in the finished VR rather than rotate.
Then get the photos into Photoshop. I found that I had to trim away the odd bit of the background in each shot where light had picked out the velvet backing. If you know your stuff you could shoot in front of a coloured screen and chroma-key the background out. Personally I find it hard to get the correct lighting to stop the coloured screen reflecting slightly off the surface of the glove, giving it an odd tinge around the edges.
Then put your 36 images into your VR software and after a couple of hours learning the package you're done. It typically took an evening to set up and shoot and another evening to treat in Photoshop and then produce the VR.
With regards to large items like Scott's - the whole process requires either a bigger turntable or placing the object at the centre of a chalked out circle and moving the camera around the circumference in 10 degree steps. The management of lighting and backing material obviously becomes much more complicated in this scenario.
So that's a very basic overview - there are plenty of irritating little pitfalls that can catch you out (and unfortunately you only discover them when you assemble the VR ) but it's not really hard.