September 2022 Virtual Meeting – 9/15

Due to the ISU Congress being held this month in the Czech Republic, our first image competition of the season will be postponed until October.

The LA 3-D Club September meeting will be virtual. We look forward to seeing our friends from all around the world in our Zoom room.

The September virtual meeting of the LA 3-D Club will take place on Thursday, September 15th from 7:00pm – 8:30pm on Zoom at

The evening will feature the fireworks videos of filmmaker Mark Willke. Mark grew up enjoying View-Master reels, but didn’t realize it was possible to create his own stereo images until he was 25, when his father gave him his barely used and long-forgotten TDC Colorist II camera. Mark was instantly hooked, and tried numerous other stereo cameras and formats before settling on a Stereo Realist as his preferred shooter. After Kodachrome processing was discontinued in 2010, he began using a Fuji W3, a Panasonic 3D1, and some paired 2D cameras. He also shoots stereo video with a JVC stereo camcorder and pairs of GoPro and other 2D video cameras. Mark has been the art director for Stereo World magazine since 1987.

“In 2015, I shared some of my hyperstereo concert video at a meeting of the Cascade Stereoscopic Club in Portland Oregon. The club’s president, Herb Weiner, asked me if I might be interested in shooting some hyperstereo video of a professional fireworks show. Herb is a pyrotechnician, and was able to grant access to the entire launch site which is normally off limits to the public. I enthusiastically agreed, and have been covering Herb’s shows ever since, even joining the pyro crew at a few shows.

In addition to the hyperstereo video of the firework bursts in the sky, it soon became clear that the activity on the ground was also very interesting. Herb prefers putting on hand-lit fireworks shows, where the fuse for each shell is lit by hand with what is essentially a road flair. The pyrotechnicians wear complete fire protection suits during the show, as sparks are flying everywhere. The thought of capturing some of that activity in 3D (without getting burned in the process) was very appealing.

For the hyperstereo video of the bursts in the sky, I’ve been using pairs of Panasonic 2D video cameras on tripods approximately 15 to 20 feet apart. Those cameras are back far enough that they are out of the danger zone. For the closer video, I’ve been using pairs of older inexpensive Vado 2D video cameras side-by-side on a bar. They are cheap enough that it’s not the end of the world if they get damaged by the heat or sparks, and I’ve lost several of them already. (One took a direct hit and was cracked in half!) These pairs of cameras are positioned on tripods and allowed to run unattended during the show. A few years ago I also added several pairs of GoPro 1 cameras in their 3D enclosure for additional close 3D in the launch area, and Herb even wears a pair of them on his helmet while lighting the show.

During the year’s time between fireworks shows, I end up picking up additional cameras and tripods if I see them for dirt cheap prices, and things have pretty much gone out of control in that area, with each year’s show being captured with more cameras. For the 2022 show (which I have not yet had the time to edit together) we had 54 video cameras rolling and four still cameras. Some of the cameras shut down early, or have focus or other problems, but that still leaves us with lots of good video streams to use for the final 3D show. I’ve been using Magix Video Pro X for the editing, as it seems to handle 3D well.”

The meeting will conclude with a club member “Show-and-Tell.” We would love to see your favorite 3-D images and collectibles. Members are encouraged to share an item of interest with the rest of the attendees. Share you favorite photos, videos, and 3-D items.

View this gallery of Mark Willke’s Behind-the-scenes photos

Please join our meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone.

Members can sign in early at 6:30pm to socialize. All are welcome to attend.
To join the meeting, go to (this simple link will always direct to the current club Zoom meeting)

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