Electric Kingdom In 3-D

It’s time once again to share with everyone my photos from Electric Kingdom. If you are new around these parts, Electric Kingdom is a monthly electronic music and live art party here in Flagstaff, Ariz. As usual you can check out all my roaming shots by heading over to the EK Facebook page here… However, this month was a little different. Last month I did a series of portraits in glorious 3-D, which you can view here… These were shot on two tripods, with the focal length marked in the dirt and were generally static and tedious to shoot. Never one to be satisfied, I decided to try and build a bracket that would allow me to shoot two professional dslr’s at the same time with off camera flash at the night club (or really anywhere). I thought the motion and blurry lights would lend themselves to 3-D very well, and generally they did, but the rabbit hole went deeper than I had anticipated…

photo courtesy of Matt Beaty © 2012

Setting up the rig is quite the process…

photo courtesy of Matt Beaty © 2012

The Bi-Clops (as it was named) ready to shoot…

photo courtesy of Matt Beaty © 2012

Triggering the big lights with the Bi-Clops…

Since WordPress doesn’t play well with Gif files, please click on each image to open it in a new window and see the 3-D effect.

I have a few ideas on how to improve the design. Mainly, a way to press one button and trigger both cameras simultaneously (hint: it involves two 10-pin-pocket wizard cords and a dual head phone splitter). As it is now, I must carefully press the shutters at the exact same time. Just a moment off and the person will move differently through the frame and the slower camera won’t catch the flash at the same time.

A second problem is the weight of two professional dslr bodies, a flash, two wireless triggers and at least another pound of metal, my answer? in the future I will try to mount it to a shoulder stabilizer rig that has become popular with dslr cinema types.

Focusing was an issue, I had to pre focus each camera to a certain distance, gaff tape the focus rings and make sure my subjects were x-feet away, this mostly worked well, but i have a theory on how to get auto focus capabilities. (hint it utilizes a ttl cord.)

I also learned a lot about how best to shoot these 3-D images. What parts of the frame tend to move certain ways, what a foreground element does to an image, where to place a subject etc.

While this was strictly an experiment to see if a mobile 3-D rig was even possible, I am fairly happy with some of the images. I shot and assembled many more than are shown here, but scrapped them for various reasons.

I may try more next month depending on how I cam improve the bracket.

As an added reward for those of you who stuck with me for the whole post, here is a link to a Tumblr page I started to showcase these Gifs (tumblr plays well with this file format) Check them out here…

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