Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Iwo Jima with a new dimension

A buddy of mine, Greg Williams, is a nut about stereoscopes -- you know, those three-dimensional photo things ... the predecessor to the View-Master, which is actually just a slick version of a stereoscope.

Greg, who's an artist at The Tampa Tribune, also is a history buff and loves iconic photos, especially Pulitzer Prize-winners.

So, long before Clint Eastwood released his movie "Flags of Our Fathers," Greg was into Joe Rosenthal's Pulitzer Prize-winning photo "Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima," which depicts five Marines and one Navy Corpsman raising the American flag on Mount Suribachi.

Greg knew that Marine cinematographer Sgt. Bill Genaust had filmed the same moment, and he wondered if the film footage was shot close enough, but not too close, to be able to create a stereoscope.

Sure enough, it had been.

Greg married a frame of Genaust's footage with Rosethal's photo and voila! -- a 3D picture.

Check out Greg's story and find a link to the 3D stereoscopic image.

You'll need those silly 3-D glasses. (Steal you kids from his "Shark Boy and Lava Girl" DVD.) But it's way cool.


At 7:28 AM, Anonymous Greg Williams said...

Thanks for the mention, Warren! Maybe a few of your readers will be interested in giving it a try.

You can view the image WITHOUT those red/blue 3-D glasses, if you are able to master the crossed-eye technique described on the Tribune's Web site. It's sort of like viewing those Magic Eye posters from a few years back: If you could see the leaping dolphins while everyone around you was calling it a scam, then it's a good bet you can master the crossed-eye technique.

Here are links to some easy-to-follow instructions on Boris Starosta's site, and a gallery of a few of his cool 3-D photos:

At 11:14 AM, Blogger Warren Epstein said...

Here's a comment I got about my "Flags review:

Hello Warren,

Read your review of “Flags of our Fathers’’ and would like to make a couple of comments. You, and others who have critiqued the movie, interchange the use of ‘‘soldiers” for “Marines.” The two are not the same. Marines are kind of touchy about the Medias incorrectly using the description “soldier” (Army) rather than “Marine.” One movie critique didn’t use the name Marine at all and said soldiers all through his review. Bad form.

Also you, and others, have commented on the use of “chief” when describing Pfc Ira Hayes. This is not a racist term as today’s PC crowd would like to believe. When I joined the Marine Corps in 1952 (as a 16 year old) Indians were commonly called “chief”, Hispanics as “Pancho.” Further, anyone with a Scandinavian last name was called “Swede” and with a German name often called “Fritz.” This was among buddies, closely bonded by rough Marine training and eventually combat. There was no insult intended in using these titles, that’s just the way it was. I do not recall anyone ever being offended by a title and most Marines pick up a nickname that follows them through their career. And you might be surprised that some of these nicknames cannot be printed!

I have read the book “Flags of our Fathers” and will see the movie. A few years ago a former Navy corpsman that served on Iwo Jima with the 5thMARDIV gave me a Japanese rifle he took off a dead soldier and an officer’s sword. While field stripping the rifle to clean it some grains of black sand from that island fell out onto my workbench. That kind of got to me as this rifle, and the sword, belonged to soldiers who were fighting for their country and died for it. Who were they? When this corpsman presented the rifle and sword he began to tell us of his experiences during the battle. He gave me his pack that had a bullet hole in it from when a machine gun burst hit him in the back knocking him down. He started to really unload his memories in a rush and then he broke down and started to cry.

This has been a little rambling. That terrible battle is part of our history and maybe the public will better understand what it means to wear a uniform. I enjoyed your review Warren, very well done!

Thomas Mix
Capt. USMC ret.

Capt. Mix raises a good point about the use of "soldier," but these weren't all Marines. One was a Navy corpsman. Does anybody know if soldiers is an acceptable generic term for a mixed group of military people?


Post a Comment

<< Home