Queen of three dimensions - Hamilton City Magazine Skip to main content
Celebrating all things Hamilton / Welcome Message
Arts + Culture

Queen of three dimensions

Katya Neklyudova has one of her stereoscopic photos featured in a book published by Queen guitarist Brian Ma

Hamilton resident and McMaster University professor Katya Neklyudova, a lifelong Queen fan, has one of her photos published in a book of 3D photography published by Brian May, the guitarist of the iconic British band.

May is a huge 3D (stereoscopic) photography fan – he even bought the historic London Stereoscopic Company (LSC) – and published a book of his photographs of the band called Queen in 3D. 

Neklyudova was transported to her childhood right away.

As a youngster in the Soviet Union, she had a set of stereo slides depicting fairy tales and adventures that she looked at through a viewer for hours. It was similar to the View-Master familiar to North Americans of a certain age.

“I was so entranced by the whole other world that opened up to me.”

Inspired by May’s work and a community of stereo-photographers on Instagram, Neklyudova began to experiment with 3D photography. She practised, talked to people and attended a convention.

Stereo-cameras have two lenses that take separate images but traditional cameras work, too, for still subjects. The photographer takes an image and then moves the camera slightly to capture a second. Neklyudova takes her photos with a phone and uses an app as a guide. 

“It requires great concentration and focus. It’s a very meditative activity for me.”

When May issued a call for photos shot during the pandemic, she submitted several and was thrilled when one was chosen from among entries from all over the world for Stereoscopy is Good For You: Life In 3-D. Her shot of rows of colourful umbrellas was taken on an empty street in Quebec City in the summer of 2020. 

This shot appears in Stereoscopy is Good for You: Life in 3D, edited by Queen guitarist Brian May. Photo: Katya Neklyudova 

“It looks like a flock of birds are flying toward you. It’s a symbol of beauty and hope,” says Neklyudova. 

“It’s such a great honour to be in the book. It’s hard to describe. It’s not something you would ever expect to happen in your lifetime. It really powerfully documents how people were feeling and what they were going through.”

The launch of the book was celebrated last November in a gallery in London, England.

“Of course I went!” Neklyudova answers with a laugh. “I was completely overwhelmed to meet Brian. I forgot my English words but he was very sweet and nice.” 

McMaster university professor Katya Neklyudova has one of her 3D images (top right) featured in a book published by Brian May of Queen. PHOTO: Mark Farley