The Stereo Realist, Scanning, and You

I picked up an old Stereo Realist camera on ebay a while back and finally developed my first roll of film today.  Yep, I developed the film all by myself and didn’t fry it.  Took a little bit of a refresher course in the chemicals and dilution ratios, took a deep breath and popped open the canister post-final rinse.  It worked.  Beautifully.

Now, with dry film in hand, I sat down with my Windows 7 machine and trusty old Canon Canoscan 8400f.  The two have been having a disagreement (Scanner is TWAIN and Windows 7 is really primarily WIA, two differet protocols for image aquisition), but I finally managed to get things rolling after downloading the TWAIN plug-in for Photoshop (it’s not standard anymore).  Your scan driver/software should have a way to allow you to specify the size of the negative and to turn off any auto-correction (exposure, tone, sharpness, etc). Ideally, every scan should be exactly the same, straight from the negative. Then there was finding software for the 3d stereo vision setup.  The one most peple use, apparently, is StereoPhoto Maker.  Free to download, and the installation/set-up instructions are pretty straight forward.  The instructions tell you to also download something called AutoPano.  The version they tell you to download doesn’t comply with Windows 7, or at least it doesn’t right now.  However, AutoPano Pro is available here, found via google search and works perfectly.  You just have to plug in the path to the .exe file in StereoPhoto under Edit/Preferences/Adjustment.  I found it best to make sure my left and right images are both about the way I want them (cropped, adjusted, etc) before importing them into StereoPhoto.  Then let StereoPhoto run Auto Alignment, go into Edit/Add Fuzzy Border (turn the fuzz down to zero for a plain border), and File/Save Stereo Image.  VOILA!  Just cross your eyes a little (or look down at your nose) and allow a third image to appear between the two images and come into focus.  That image should be in 3d!

It’s been really fun going through the stereo images and now I can’t wait to go back out and burn through another roll!  Click Here to view my Stereo Realist set on flickr.

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