An autostereoscopic life size 3D poster presents an illusion that engages the brain in a much different way as compared to a single perspective traditional poster. If you look at a 3D poster while walking by it your brain is constantly recalibrating depth perception for every shift in gaze. While I haven’t found any scientific measurements published and have not completed any formal scientific tests yet, casual observation at a recent Yankee Candle Store revealed people looking at a 3D poster for considerably longer periods and in an examining sort of way.
It is interesting to note that while every attempt is made with an Almont Green photograph to be life size and as realistic as possible – the objects and people in the image do not change relationships as you walk by the image as they do in real life. This unreal component it turns out is accomodated instantly with our brain’s ability to process different perspectives in each eye without regard to our shift in position – relative to the perspective. Indeed, the brain changes or alters what is perceived in a way that makes sense. The imagery within the 3D photograph is moved within the processing of our brain. That’s right! Our brain actually moves the foreground in relation to the background as we move. An impossibility, but yet it happens. The brain changes what we see in the poster as we move.
To demonstrate, look at the diagram below while crossing your eyes until you perceive three squares of equal size. A dot at the top should help you to be able to align the middle image to the proper size for fusion to 3D in your brain. To aid you crossing your eyes, hold the tip of your finger between your eyes and move it toward the computer monitor and back toward your face while looking at the finger tip and noticing the illustration in the background as it spreads apart and a middle image appears. Once the dots are aligned in the middle, look at the middle image and you should be able to fuse it and see it with stereopsis. The smaller box should look like it is sticking out towards you. After you achieve stereopsis, slowly move your head left and right and you will see the lines running from the big box to the little box change size! Of course, they don’t – but your brain is editing what you are seeing and making constant corrections.
Ok, so why is this important?
Well, in terms of advertising – it has considerable importance. All of this brain activity and processing is happening as a mind investment in the imagery. It is like fly paper in that if there is enough attractant (the image is interesting and compelling to look at) then a passing glance might be strong enough to engage the brain’s processing. And when that happens it has been observed that people will automatically continue to engage what they are looking at for a very long period as compared to a standard poster with a single perspective. The brain is processing the advertising imagery in a much more active way.
The most important part of the above paragraph is that which pertains to the word ATTRACTANT! Where most illusionary imagery that simulates depth fails is with this most critical step. It isn’t enough to have a dimensional image – it must be an image that has attractant along with accurate perspective and dimensionality for stereopsis.
What kinds of imagery have the greatest attractant for 3D. As it turns out, there are very specific things that work considerably better than others and this is something I’ve been experimenting with for years. I can go into great detail about it for those interested in hiring me as a consultant.
If you are an advertiser or retailer that is intrigued by the above, please contact me for more information.
What do you think about this article? I’d love to read your comments!