You can watch the new video from Canadian band Young Rival, but there’s no guarantee that you’ll actually see it.
Stereograms are images that, when looked at in a certain Zen-like eye-state give the illusion of depth perception–and possibly a hidden sailboat. Millennials might not remember it that well, but there was a period in the 1990s when these things were absolutely all the rage, and an image brand called Magic Eye was king. Although they’ve fallen by the wayside in years that have produced any number of other cool things for stoned people to look at, Young Rival has revived the Magic Eye-style stereogram for its latest video, “Black Is Good.”
At the start of the video, a caption asks viewers to “de-focus/ relax your eyes,” above two dots set a scant distance apart. The audience is supposed to keep doing so “until these two dots form a third dot in the middle,” at which time the madness can begin. Unless you’re one of those people who can’t see Magic Eye images, watching what follows in 1080p HD will reveal the band rocking out beneath a sheen of shimmering static.
Directed by Jared Raab, the video also comes with an accompanying technical explanation on the band’s YouTube page:
“This video is made up of a sequence of something called a ‘random dot autostereograms’. These are also made on computers, but use subtle differences in a randomly generated field of noise to create the illusion. To make your own autostereogram, one must first create a thing called a “depth map” which is a 2D representation of 3D depth information. We collected real-time depth data of Young Rival performing the song using an X-Box Kinect hooked up to a computer. The computer was running software called RGBD toolkit, designed for capturing the depth information from the Kinect using its built-in infrared system. Once we had our depth information, we unpacked it into image sequences and edited these sequences as if they were regular video. The only difference in the editing process was that depth was represented by luminosity.”
If you’re having trouble seeing the video, there’s a solid tutorial here.