Thursday, February 21, 2013

Depth map system technique example #2 or How to make it 3D. 8)

What is a depth map system?

Good question! Thanks for asking! 

The depth map displacement system is a visual algorithm (similar to Painter's algorithm) which is used in computer graphics to simulate 3D in a 2D image (z-depth).  

Z-buffering made simple! 8)

 There is more to the depth map system than meets the EYE


Do you really want to know what the depth map system is? You do? GREAT! 

It is a way of adding a third dimension to a two dimensional object. 
What a concept! 
Its almost like 
looking into the 

4th dimension

8)8)8)8)8) = infinite kif
©2013 Dain Fagerholm
depth map with displacement 
For a 72dpi scanned 2D image, the amount of displacement to achieve parallax is usually 1-10 depending on what you want to achieve. 
Ex: default X=10,Y=0
Too much displacement can cause tears in the depth map. if depth map tearing occurs on image...
Usually tears occur due to  abrupt edge transitions. This problem can be solved by using Gaussian blur to soften depth map before displacement. 8)
*stroboscopic animated GIF illustrates 
parallax shift on X axis. ex. X=10,Y=0
depth map system
((dark tones = far),(light tones = near))
*greyscale tones are used to indicate depth based on Painter's algorithm.
original image
drawing using ink pen and color dye marker on paper at 200 dpi.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. in an image editing program (which shall remain nameless) there is a displacement filter. the filter uses a psd file (i.e the depth map). it is not an overlay, it is a filter. Displacement on the horizontal axis of the image creates the pixel-shift. the amount is arbitrary depending on the amount of parallax you desire. -10 is the default so start there and test out what works. I find that on a 100dpi image the best amount of displacment is aroun 3 to 9 pixels. Too much displacement like -15 -20 (on a 72dpi image or if the depth map isnt good the displacement will tear the edges though so it is best to use gaussian blur to soften the depth map before displacement. Rock on. 8)

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

    3. Hey Dain, just wanted to say I have successfully created my own gif with your help! Thanks so much!, do you REALLY want people to learn this secret??

  2. Only those who are worthy will know the REAL SECRET of the depth map system. So yeah..sure. why not?