05 April 2010

The Alchemist: CSS pseudo 3D.

In the following post, I use a two-and-a-half-dimensional (2.5) technique to fake a three-dimensional (3D) visualization of Joseph Wright of Derby's painting The Alchemist in Search of the Philosopher's Stone This post was mostly inspired by Román Cortès' 3D Menimas and a post on Experiment Garden.

The Alchemist in Search of the Philosopher's Stone

The following image/script was successfully tested under Firefox 3.6. Move your mouse over the image

How it works

Each component of the collage is part of a larger transparent picture:
An array defines each sprite. One sprite is defined by its rectangular clip (x,y,width,height) in the original image, its position (x,y) in the collage and a value (ratio) reflecting the amount of pixels it should scroll
var picts=[
/* background */
/* people */
The HTML is defined as follow:
<div id='id9879709_main' style='overflow:hidden;position:relative;background-color:red;width:226px;height:320px;border:1px solid black;'>
<span style="position:relative;padding:3px;background-color:white;top:15px;left:15px;border:2px solid black;z-index:100; font-weight: bold;"><a target="_wp" href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:JosephWright-Alchemist.jpg">The Alchemist</a></span>
.When this html document is loaded, a <div> clipping each sprite is created an inserted into the document:
var main=document.getElementById('main');
main.onmousemove = callback;
for(var i in picts)
var pict=picts[i];
pict.img=document.createElement("div"); pict.img.setAttribute("style","position:absolute;top:"+pict.y+"px;left:"+pict.x+"px;width:"+pict.clip[2]+"px;height:"+pict.clip[3]+"px;z-index:"+i+";background:url(alchemy02.png) no-repeat scroll -"+pict.clip[0]+"px -"+pict.clip[1]+"px;");
Lastly a javascript callback is called each time the mouse moves over the image. This method shifts each sprites according to the value of its 'ratio':
var v=document.getElementById('id9879709_main');
var left=v.offsetLeft;
var width=226.0;
var midX= left+width/2.0;
var maxshift=30;
var mouseX=e.clientX;
if(mouseX &gt; left+width) mouseX=left+width;
if(mouseX &lt; left) mouseX=left;
var shift= ((e.clientX-midX)/(width/2.0))*maxshift;
for(var i in picts)
var pict=picts[i];

That's it


István Albert said...

I get a javascript error:

Error: missing ) after condition

Source File: http://plindenbaum.blogspot.com/2010/04/alchemist-css-pseudo-3d.html
Line: 444, Column: 138
Source Code:
('id9879709_main'); var left=v.offsetLeft; var width=226.0; var midX= left+width/2.0;var maxshift=30; var mouseX=e.clientX; if(mouseX > left+width) { mouseX=left+width;} if(mouseX < left) {mouseX=left;} var shift= ((e.clientX-midX)/(width/2.0))*ma

Pierre Lindenbaum said...

Istvan, I fixed the bug. I didn't see the bug at the first time because the code was developped for XHTML and blogger.com uses HTML.

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NathanKP said...

Very nice work! It looks great. I'm glad that my blog post at Experiment Garden helped inspire you.

Nathan - Experiment Garden