Friday, January 3, 2014

Mexican Beach in 3D!

There are still a couple of Mexico posts in me fighting to get out.  You might recall that Puerto Peñasco is on the Sea of Cortez.  Margie's house is only about 125 meters from the beach, so is a short stroll, though a little work to fight your way down (or up) a pretty steep and very sandy access slope. I've written about the tides there - because of the "bathtub effect", small tidal changes down at the south side of the Sea near La Paz result in some of the highest tides in the world up at Puerto Peñasco.  At Christmas while we were there at last quarter moon, the tides were only about 1.5 meters, but during new and full moon it can be well over 6 meters (over 20 feet)!  Even at 1.5 meters it was a substantial change.  At left, the tide was near high when I made my first trip down to shore.  At right the next morning from near the same vantage point it was near low and the water was quite a bit further out if only 5 feet lower...  Both of these views are looking west towards town, the hill and lighthouse overlooking old town visible in the distance.

In Tucson, we've got lots of sand, but don't have many sea creatures!  It was fun to roam and explore the high-water mark to find shells and evidence of sea life.  In previous springtime trips, low tide was the interesting time for lil' sea animals, but this trip, at least with the minimal tides, little was seen of the live creatures we've spotted before.  But the photos here show that at least at the upper tide limits, there is more shell and what used to be shells than sand!  At left the nearly-setting sun added a warm cast to sand and shell.  At right, the next morning reveals that most every granule is an eroded piece of shells.

That morning, macro lens in hand, I worked on developing a new technique to simplify and improve my taking macro 3D pictures.  If the reaction from my readers is good, perhaps I'll write it up, but for now, enjoy the 3D beach pics below.  As always, these are cross-eyed views...  Cross your eyes slightly to look at the right picture with your left eye and vise versa.  You should see 3 pictures in your brain, the center one will be interpreted as showing depth.  If you are a newbie at this, you will likely find it easier to fuse the thumbnails, and if successful, you can try the full-size images for higher resolution.  Folks ask why I post them this way - well, with this technique you don't need any accessory viewers that are usually needed for parallel-eye viewing.  Try this and see! 

I didn't take note of the picture separation, but suspect they are likely taken from vantage points further apart than normal eye separation, making them "hyperstereo" images.  But they effectively amplify what little relief is visible on small objects on the beach, so I love the effect - I hope you do too!

Unfortunately, I don't know the identity of any of these shell types - I need my buddy Donna, who was with us and is a bit of a shell collector from her earlier Florida days, to help with these.  If I hear from her, I'll pass some IDs along!  I love the amplified depth of the hyperstereo effect on these almost microscopic shells...  The left one here is the same type as the left above, both eroded open, but still showing some interesting shapes, especially in 3D.

Ok, these are the last ones.  I'm showing literally every stereo pair I shot because I can't decide which ones I like best - I like them all.  Sorry if they give you headaches, but do let me know if the technique works for you and if you enjoy stuff like this - I sure do!

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