Old Japan in 3D


3D imaging is not a recent invention. More than 100 years ago, an excellent Japanese artist and photographer made images with a finish in three dimensions. I was surprised by the quality and realism of the results. Want to know who this pioneer is? Want to see some of the images in 3D? Go ahead…

T. Enami (1859-1929) is undoubtedly the most important Japanese photographer of his time. His fame and reputation are backed by the quality of his work and innovation in the art. He worked in both large and small formats. They are also famous for its stereograms.

Enami Self Portrait, by 1898, in his study of Yokohama.

The stereograms were made following a very simple technique. He took pictures using a camera with two other cameras attached to it to take the same picture at the same time. The separation between the lenses or objectives were similar to the distance between the eyes. So each picture is in a slightly different perspective. This means that at the same time, every eye focused on the corresponding picture in 3 dimensions. After development, the snapshots are colored by hand. To correctly display the 3D images, they used a special device.

Today, these images have been treated in a single file (a GIF file), to give the impression of 3D without having to use a special viewing device. This treatment has been made recently by Okinawa Soba. If you want to see the original images in GIF format emulating the 3D, you can check my personal blog. All original images were taken by Enami between 1895 and 1910. You can also check this video:

As we said in the beginning, Enami did not only work on stereograms, he also worked with all kinds of formats. Here are some samples of his extensive work:

Official site of T. Enami
More images on the page of Okinawa Soba
My personal blog with the 3D animated

written by jesushp on 2011-10-20 #lifestyle #analog #color #colour #lomography #japan #3d #analogue-lifestyle #enami #stereogram #old-japan
translated by jesushp


  1. dearjme
    dearjme ·

    Wow some of his extensive work looks like xpro stuff!

  2. strangelilgirl
    strangelilgirl ·

    very interesting!

  3. superlighter
    superlighter ·

    love it!

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