The illusion of depth can be created as an animated gif between two images that have a slight offset. The New York Public Library has opened access to its archives and created a project called the Stereogranimator. The site allows you to choose an image out of the 700,000 digital images in their repository. You then find the sweet spot and get to enjoy the “glasses-free” 3D effect on the image.
To create your own image, you click the ‘Create’ tab and search the collections for a subject that catches your fancy. I did a quick search for a blacksmith and chose one of the results, as you can see above.
Once you select your image, you follow the directions to drag the image in order to find its “sweet spot”, based on the performance you see from the animated image on the right.
That’s it. Click the ‘Save Image’ button and you will be given options to save the image, send a link, or embed it on a site.
Along with the animated GIFs, you can also create anaglyphs. These require 3D glasses in order to see the effect and probably remind you of the blue/red glasses that were frequently used for 3D effects back in the day. You similarly drag the image to find the correct overlay for the image to look its best.
You can also browse the gallery of other images that have been created from the collections.
Check it out and make your own 3D images at http://stereo.nypl.org