The Future of Outdoor Advertising: 3D Anamorphic Billboards

Updated 27 oct 2023: The original post was published on 15/12/2021

What would you do if you witnessed a one-eyed giant trying to reach out to you to steal your shopping bag? Or a huge ocean wave coming at you from the ‘aquarium-like’ screen? It seems astonishing, right? Typically referred to as 3D anamorphic screens, several of these striking billboard screens have gone viral on social media, with many stunned by how lifelike and believable the animation looks. These fascinating 3D outdoor ads and campaigns will truly make you believe there is another dimension within the ad screen if you look at them from a certain angle.

From: Facebook Post. (2021). Lazada’s 3D Anamorphic Billboard in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Though this is not the first time we’ve seen 3D objects jump out of digital billboards, In the opening of 2021, a charging bull, spray-painted gold, leaps out from the billboard corner of a shopping mall located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, seemingly shattering the glass of the building. This visual was made as part of the celebration of the Chinese New Year and 2021, the Year of the Bull.

Even during the pandemic, 3D Anamorphic Billboards continued to dominate the world of Out-Of-Home advertising, expanding across Asia from Tokyo, Japan, Seoul, South Korea, Jakarta, Indonesia, to Chengdu, China, and Taiwan. Today, this sophisticated technology is taking over the city of Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, to streamline the new era of outdoor advertising.

In this article, you’ll learn how this cutting-edge technology works, its characteristics, how it continues to influence OOH media today, and why it’s becoming an excellent form of marketing.

Are 3D Billboards Real?

The jaw-dropping effect of this type of 3D technology and its immersive visual experience make people believe that it’s real. But, in truth, it is simply a part of what we call ‘art illusion.’

Anamorphic illusions, also known as anamorphosis, are the effects that occur when you have to observe space from a certain vantage point in order to correctly see a picture that otherwise appears disfigured. In other words, anamorphosis refers to any intentional distortion or optical illusion. They date back to the Renaissance but have recently gained a lot of popularity.

Some of the earlier works related to anamorphosis are baroque and rococo domes and ceilings. Rome’s Chiesa di Sant’Ignazio di Loyola in Campo Marzio, which has a monumental trompe l’œil mural on the ceiling, is one of the most famous examples of a rococo masterpiece.

The ceiling of the Treasure Room of the Archaeological Museum of Ferrara (Ferrara, Italy), painted in 1503–1506. Wikipedia.

Even before the 3D LED screens, several artists had already been creating anamorphic illusions without the use of technology, from drawings to street paintings.

From Design Swan. Amazing Anamorphic Illusions by Brusspup

Cuboliquido (2016). 3D Painting and Anamorphic Art by Chalk Artist Cuboliquido Source: Pinterest

Suffice it to say, these artworks, particularly the modern 3D anamorphic billboards, are the latest evidence that digital art is still a neo-rococo art form.

So How Does a 3D Digital Billboard Work, Exactly?

As explained in Doit Vision, 3D Digital billboards function similarly to other 3D displays. On the screen, two separate images are presented. These two images were taken from two different perspectives. The two objects are then blended into a single piece of video. This gives the film a three-dimensional appearance. These visuals are perceived by our left and right eyes, with slightly distinct images in each eye, resulting in the depth seen in 3D technology.

From: Ad Haiwell. (2021) What is really 3D LED Display.

We see things in the same manner in real life. The depth we perceive in real-world objects is caused by the fact that each eye sees two separate images. This gives the feeling of depth. 3D technology produces an optical illusion, tricking the eye into thinking something is real when it is not.

Instead of fabricating 3D effects with evident structures, the 3D digital billboard achieves the three-dimensional appearance on the billboard display through the use of digital media and digital technology. Because there are no tangible elements with edges to make the image appear realistic, the visual is considerably more believable.

A Combination of Technology and Art

Meanwhile, Alta Media provided a more technical definition for 3D Anamorphic billboards. To them, an anamorphic illusion is paired with a 90-degree bendable LED outer curtain, enabling flexibility and considerably reducing installation and alignment time. This sort of LED display is effectively waterproof and dustproof, offering high-resolution images with exceptional brightness and contrast. Because of its great efficiency, this type of LED may be permanently installed outdoors and operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

LED Anamorphic Illusion Outdoors

3D imagery is more noticeable than traditional static billboards. While the visuals are two-dimensional in reality, the impact, as mentioned, created by these images is three-dimensional. These billboards employ a variety of creative approaches to create a believable 3D impression.

One of these techniques is placing the 3D anamorphic billboard in a location where the anamorphic digital art can blend with its surroundings. The transparent 3D displays interact with the surroundings in such a manner that they generate harmony with the environment. They provide visual effects that are in tune with the atmosphere.

A large digital OOH screen in Jakarta, Indonesia, for instance, changed the viewing angle to head-on by using shadows and taking advantage of the building structure in order to create the impression.

This method was able to startle spectators by making the digital background appear like its surroundings, making them forget it was digital and active. In this case, it is outdoors, and the creative elements in the concrete facade of the building the screen is mounted on,

That’s why, when an alien spaceship appears to break through the building, it’s because the “building” spectators see is designed into the concept.

An example of this is the massive 90-degree curved LED digital installation displayed above a retail space in Chengdu, China, showing a 3D-effect film that appears to depict a Star Trek-style starship coming out from the screen into the area in front of it.

Best watched from an angle, the glasses-free ‘3D’ video wall was a top-five trending item on Sina Weibo, a Chinese social media network akin to Twitter, during a Chinese national holiday.

These different art forms make the visual experience extraordinary while also creating the sensation of being close to reality.

From Creativity to Striking Visual  Experience

 3D Digital Billboards provide an enthralling visual experience. The three-dimensional appearance provided by the film adds depth to the information that static graphics do not. As a result, these clips appear more realistic and interesting. The sense of gratification provided by seeing three-dimensional content on digital 3D billboards is priceless.

Digital 3D pictures projected on billboards are immediately appealing. They provide visual enjoyment to the observer. A well-produced 3D video provides the audience with a rich experience that lasts long after the footage has stopped playing. 3D digital billboards may provide a platform for graphic designers to express their creativity and convert advertisements into works of art.

Digital billboards using 3D technology not only restrict the content to the advertisement but also create an artistic environment to appeal to the people with aesthetics and provide them with visual pleasure. Transparent billboards, for example, provide a visual experience that is in tune with the surroundings. It’s a place where you can go on countless adventures. Artists just need to find a way to express themselves without fear of being stifled.

Just take a look at this public media art performance in Seoul, Korea, that’s designed to provide a calm and soothing experience. The description of this piece is, “We hope for a world where people with diverse values can harmonize. When two people dancing in spaces of different dimensions reach out to touch each other, it comes out of the confined space and blends, finally creating a beautiful movement.”

Why 3D Digital Billboards are Perfect for Marketing?

3D digital billboards are now the future of marketing. Though traditional billboards have performed well over the years, 3D digital billboards have proven to be a stronger marketing option. The static displays on standard billboards are dull. The audience becomes tired of seeing the same old static ad on billboards. People are more interested in seeing what the ad is about when it is displayed in 3D on digital billboards.

This amazing 3D Anamorphic billboard of a train emerging from the screen has just revealed how technology changed the future of OOH media.

On top of that, the billboards’ three-dimensional impact boosts viewer retention. It provides a way for brands to establish their identities. With 3D anamorphic ads, it is also easier to communicate your message to your audience. It creates a pause and re-energizes the lives of the public. Just like the giant cat lurking around the corner of Tokyo, Japan.

To attract attention away from the bustling street below, the kitten giant was indeed a creative and entertaining move. After all, with so many billboards and advertisements in Japan, it might be difficult to stand out, yet 3D outdoor advertisements appear to be achieving just that! Suffice it to say, the cat became popular on the internet owing to the fact that it appears to be reacting to the outside world. Just take a look at all of these hilarious and classic reactions from audiences who viewed the video of Tokyo’s giant 3D cat on CBS Mornings.

As you can see, these billboards are excellent for increasing brand recognition. They help your brand stand out from the crowd.

Here are some of our successful New 3D campaigns:

Heeren Orchard 3D LED Screen (HSBC)

The Heeren is located right in the middle of Somerset and Orchard MRT Stations. At the busiest intersection of Orchard Road and Cairnhill Road, its prominent position in a vibrant location ensures that it captures the gaze of a diverse audience, drawing fashion enthusiasts, shoppers, and passers-by alike.

In addition, it is right in the heart of Singapore’s most visited square mile, amidst a dozen major hotels, cinemas, and the affluent Cairnhill district, such as the Mandarin Gallery, Hilton, and Cineleisure.

Heeren Orchard LED screen – the best Out of Home digital in the vicinity

This is an L-shaped outdoor advertising screen that has been upgraded for 3D anamorphic possibilities.

Heeren Orchard 2D LED Screen (H&M x Mugler)

The H&M Mugler advertising campaign embarked on a mission to captivate, inspire, and empower fashion lovers around the globe. The Heeren LED Screen is the perfect stage for showcasing the H&M Mugler Collaboration Campaign.’

Unveiling Fashion’s Powerhouse Collaboration: H&M x Mugler on The Heeren LED Screen

The Heeren LED Screen provides an immersive visual experience that captivates the attention of passersby, engaging them in the mesmerizing world of fashion.

The Heeren LED Screen has a total area of 82 sq m, is audio-enabled, and operates every day from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Our 3D campaign at Omotesando, Tokyo, Japan (Audemars Piguet)

Omotesandō Hills is a beautiful street where Zelkova trees line both sides of the avenue. What’s more attractive to advertisers is that it’s an upscale shopping area in Tokyo’s Minato and Shibuya wards and features international brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Celine, Loewe, and Bvlgari.

The area, known as “Tokyo’s Champs-Élysées,” is home to trendy cafes, bars, restaurants, and boutique stores and is considered by Chevalier to be the best location for luxury goods stores.

Bring Your Ads To Life And Create Immersive Outdoor Advertising Experience Today!

If you’ve ever been impressed with all these 3D anamorphic billboards, you are sure to look forward to seeing such a project with your own eyes one day. OOH media professionals have now successfully researched and developed this technology, which promises to usher in a new era in the DOOH industry. We have done 3D digital billboards not only in Vietnam but in other Asian countries like Tokyo, Japan, Seoul, South Korea, Jakarta, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Kuala Lumpur. 

However, integrating this into your outdoor advertising requires a solid understanding of your content, technology, and controllers. As an outdoor advertising agency with nearly 20 years of experience in the field, Perfect Media Group has the skills and experience necessary to assist and connect you with top-notch DOOH agencies in Vietnam as well as to guide you along that journey to 3D Anamorphic Illusions.

At TPM, we are also able to provide 3D content creation and advertising that tailors your needs! So what are you waiting for?

Book us a call now to get started!



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