The 3D Module allows you to create sophisticated 3D lenticular effects from layered Photoshop PSD/PSB files. In a 3D scene, far objects seem to move slower than near objects. If the layers are moved from one side to the other at different speeds depending on their proximity to the observer, the illusion of depth is obtained.

In order to generate a 3D lenticular effect, the following steps must be followed:

  1. Create a Photoshop PSD/PSB file made up of several overlapping layers representing the different depth levels of the same scene.
  2. Click the Browse button to load the PSD/PSB file into the 3D Module.
  3. The Depth table will show a list of the file layers. Use the controls in the Depth column to select the desired depth for each layer. A value of 0 means absolute background. A value of 100 means absolute foreground.
  4. Enter the Global parallax.
    The Global parallax is the maximum relative displacement between the first layer and the last one. In other words, this value represents the amount of depth or 3D effect present in the scene. A small value means little depth between the first and last layer.
    A large value, on the other hand, means a lot of depth.
  5. Select the Focus depth.
    The layer whose depth in the Depth table is equal to the Focus depth will remain static and perfectly focused on the final result, and all other layers will move in relation to it. The choice of the Global parallax and the Focus depth play a crucial role in the quality of the 3D effect obtained. Below are three examples with different focus depths: petunia, rose and lilies.
  6. Enter the Number of frames of the output 3D animation. The number of frames equals the printer resolution in pixels per inch (PPI) divided by the plastic pitch in lenses per inch (LPI). For example, 720 PPI / 40 LPI = 18 frames.
  7. Crop sides in case the horizontal displacement of the layers produces empty spaces in the sides of the animation. If the width of the background layer is greater than the width of the image, it is not necessary to Crop sides because the sides will be filled with the exceeding content of the background layer.
  8. Click the Preview button to view on screen the output 3D animation. Slide the control at the bottom of the Preview window to show the different images. To speed up the preview it is useful to reduce the Number of images (e.g. 5). Iteratively edit the Depth table, the Global parallax and the Focus depth until the desired effect is obtained. If it is necessary to modify the original PSD/PSB file, click on the Reload button to update the contents loaded in the application.
  9. Click the Generate button to render the output 3D animation. A Number of frames will be generated equal to the amount previously selected: image_001.tif, image_002.tif, etc.
  10. Finally, interlace the resulting animation to obtain a single file ready to be printed on the plastic and thus produce the desired 3D lenticular effect.