ChromaDepth® 3D is the only 3D image display method ever created that can be easily applied in a color medium. This process allows spectacular 3D images to be created and presented in print, film, video, television, computer graphic, and laser show formats. The ChromaDepth® 3D process enables the creation of “normal” looking color images that can be viewed as two dimensional (2D) images alone, but jump into 3D when viewed with the revolutionary and inexpensive ChromaDepth® 3D Glasses.

The amazing and clear C3D™ Glasses use sophisticated micro-optics to transform color images into true stereo 3D. There is no special software required to create ChromaDepth® 3D images. This website will teach you how to make your own 3D images with your favorite graphics software.  In fact you don’t even need software – you could create a ChromaDepth® image with crayons!

The secret code of color

The core concept of ChromaDepth® is straightforward: encode depth into an image by means of color, then optically decode the color to create a true 3D image. There are a variety of color palettes that produce effective programming of holographic depth, but the simplest one is this:

On a black background, red will appear closest, blue furthest, and the other colors will fall in-between according to their place in the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue).

Any good printer can print your ChromaDepth®  3D images and do them justice. Excellent images have been printed onto plastic cups, T-shirts, posters, comic books, brochures, buttons, plastic bandages, baseball caps, mousepads and more. 

If you follow the guidelines in our Design Guide, your image will look great with the C3D™ Glasses. What you see on the computer screen as you design an image or on your palette as you draw it, is sometimes difficult to reproduce in print.  In general, there are no particular printing requirements special to ChromaDepth® 3D other than the normal requirements of high quality printing.

 Standard images tend to have bright, saturated colors since that leads to the greatest depth effects. Computer monitors use the primary additive colors, red, green, and blue, in different combinations of brightness to create the appearance of a full spectrum of colors. Conventional four color printing, or process printing, uses the primary subtractive colors, cyan, magenta, and yellow, plus black for contrast control (called the CMYK system) in various combinations to represent a smaller spectrum of colors. Saturated reds and saturated blues are difficult to get with CMYK, so spot colors are sometimes used to make up the difference. Spot colors are inks that provide a pure color that is difficult to get with the CMYK system.  Spot colors can be used to boost the red and blue end of the ChromaDepth® 3D spectrum.

Here are a few more tips for getting the best printing results:

  • A varnish overcoat keeps the saturation of the printed colors high by killing the contrast-reducing light which scatters from an uncoated paper surface.
  • Make sure the printing plates are well registered and well ‘trapped’ (ask your printer) to avoid any unwanted white lines or spots showing through.
  • White can be used as a design element in images, but unwanted white can destroy the 3D effect.  If necessary, add black borders around regions of different color to prevent this.
  • Use black patterns over large areas of color to give the viewer’s eyes the edges it needs to perceive 3D. See our Design Guide for more information on the use of black.