Preparing Digital Images For The Annual Competition

Digital Images for the competition should be in .JPG format for Side-by-Side parallel viewing. They can be any aspect ratio and should not include any black borders. File size should not exceed 6 Mbytes.

For guidance on how this can be achieved using StereoPhoto Maker (SPM), please see below:

Work Flow – Start with the image straight from the camera without resizing!

To remove height, rotational and other errors between the left and right images, in SPM, use Multi Conversion on the input files (.MPOs or .JPGs, dependent on where they come from) with just Auto alignment and Auto crop after adjustment boxes ticked. Set the Auto alignment Settings to mount near points to the window if deviation is less than 1/25th image width. Save the resulting images to a suitable new folder. Use Output file type =.JPG @ say 85% quality.

Next, for editing the overall picture, in SPM, use Open Stereo Image to view each image in turn to decide what editing is required. This may include cropping, rotation (for those like me who keep holding the camera tilted) and adjustment of the near points to the window (as SPM auto-alignment gets close but not perfect!). Easy Adjustment from the Adjust pull down menu offers all of these adjustment types and more, and Auto Colour Adjustment is good for fixing L/R differences arising with twin camera rigs such as StereoDate Maker (SDM) (check the result for “artefacts” – spurious image effects, before saving and be prepared to “undo”!).

If you have a 3D monitor such as a Zalman screen on your computer, use this (with SPM’s 3D Interlaced mode) to view your images, and don’t use the Easy Adjustment feature to adjust the near points to the window – simply use the keyboard’s left and right arrow keys to get real precision with your window adjustment. When all this is done, switch back to Side-by-Side mode, then use Save Stereo Image to over-write the image you got from Multi Conversion. These are now your fully corrected images ready for submission.

NB Later versions of SPM in the ‘Save Stereo Image’ window there is a tick box bottom left corner ‘Always save SBS format’ Tick this and you don’t have to worry about switching between interlaced and side by side before saving.

If, after doing all this, your image file is larger than 6 Mbytes, then please use the Resize function in SPM’s Edit drop down menu to reduce the size. Select the Keep Aspect-ratio option (middle bullet) in the resize dialogue box.

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