A 3D Representation of the Image of the Shroud

When Secondo Pia made the first photograph of the Shroud in 1898, more than 100 years ago, he realized in one instant that the negative photograph he had created was visually extraordinary: details never seen before were now visible and we could perceive the tridimensionality of the face and body of the man of Shroud. It was so extraordinary that, back then, many accused Secondo Pia to have used photographic trickeries to enhance the Shroud images. Of course, there were no such trickeries. Secondo Pia was as surprised as everybody else.

More recently, computer image processing of the Shroud images allowed the creation of tridimensional effects using the anaglyph technique. You need special glasses made of colored filters to perceive the 3D effect of an anaglyph photograph.

Many popular image processing software (e.g., Photoshop, Gimp) can be used to create anaglyph images. It can be done from a single bidimensional (i.e., ordinary) photograph and a depth map image. That depth map image is black and white, has the same size of the original photograph, and describes the depth of field of the single image. The depth map is typically produced by hand since the single image does not contain depth information.

The following image of the face of the man of the Shroud is an anaglyph. It was produced without creating a depth map by hand since the original image itself was used as the depth map image. The original image was taken by Enrie in 1931. The most important fact: no depth map image was created by hand to produce this anaglyph. Typically, using the original image as the depth map cannot be done with ordinary photographs because they do not contain depth data. This fact alone shows that the image on the Turin Shroud do contain 3D data and that the image was most likely produced by a real corpse and the image formation process recorded the distances from the cloth to the body.

Copyright Mario Latendresse, 2012. An anaglyph of the face of the man of the Shroud of Turin. It was produced using the convert command of Image Magick using the image itself as the depth map which is very peculiar since ordinary photographs cannot be used as depth map. (You need special glasses with blue-green/red filters to perceive the 3D effect of this image.)

A base layer of the Shroud Scope has been created showing the vertical Enrie photograph in 3D. You will need 3D glasses to see the 3D effects. If you want to go directly to the 3D base layer of the Shroud Scope, click here. The details of the creation of the 3D version are described in the help page of the Shroud Scope in Section Enrie 3D Anaglyph Version.

The 3D effects exist for all zoom levels once the “Enrie Negative 3D Vertical” base layer has been selected. The 3D effects are most perceivable at the high zoom-in levels and most notably for the face.

Note that all details of the Shroud, that is, image, water stains, bloodstains, burned marks, and more, have been left unmodified during the 3D creation and are thus shown as they are without trying to remove or mitigate the 3D effects. We believe this is the genuine way to produce a 3D anaglyph photograph of the Shroud without human interpretation. It is also the simplest way. The Enrie photograph shows how realistic, corresponding to a real corpse, the 3D data have been encoded in the Shroud as levels of black (white on the negative) color. This is quite unique.