Jawbone ERA in 3D directed by me

NOTE: Embedding 3D outside YouTube is no bueno. Watch the for reals 3D version here.

Here’s what happened: Jawbone wanted a video for their new headset, the ERA. So I and my DP and my producer got stupid on New Years Eve and hatched a plan to make it in stereoscopic 3D. That is, shoot it with two cameras, just like the pros. And make the CG with two virtual cameras, just like the Pixars.

Jawbone, God bless ‘em, went for it, and we began R&D because there’s a thing or two to learn about making video in stereoscopic. It’s fun, it’s gratifying, and despite what Walter Murch and Roger Ebert say, it can transform the cinematic experience in a good way. We enlisted the help of a good VFX guy to make the CG, we went out to the desert to shoot the background plates, and we got to work.

"But dummy. Where the hell are you going to show a 3D video?" you ask. "Your home IMAX theater? The 3D TV you have in your Beverly Hills mansion?" What if I said YouTube?

Yes, YouTube. Little-known fact: YouTube enabled support for 3D videos more than a year ago. If a video is stereoscopic, you’ll see a little menu below it, right by where you select your resolution. This menu lets you select what method you want to use to view the video. Do you have glasses? Tell YouTube what color the lenses are. 3D monitor? Fine, Richie Rich.

No glasses? Do what’s called freeviewing. That means you select the No-glasses: cross-eyed method and bring back the Magic Eye. Remember those books? The ones with a hidden image if you align your eyes just right? Same principle. Take the two dots, cross your eyes slightly until the two dots become one, and HOLY COW the video is 3D.

Try it. They say if you can freeview, you’re smart and attractive and say clever things at parties and if you can’t, you eat your own boogers.

Here’s a quick primer: close your left eye. Hold up your right hand so it covers only the right image. Keep your hand there. Open your left eye and close your right eye. Hold up your left hand so it covers only the right image. Open both your eyes and in between your hands, there will be one image. Adjust your eyes to focus.

Try it. Let me know if it works. When you get it right, the image comes alive. For practice, look at this video on learning to freeview. Practice with other 3D YouTube videos by searching for the tag “yt3d:enable=true”.

Can’t see the 3D? Don’t worry. You can still watch the Jawbone ERA video in 2D monoscopic. Enjoy the boogers.

Credits:

Birdhouse — A notepad for Twitter