A light pattern is projected onto an object and deformation of the pattern renders 3D information. This method functions reasonable for relatively large, solid objects.
It has been used regularly for human faces. The method can hardly distinguish thin structures like stems and twigs. The method only renders a 2.5 D image, and images of the back of the object have to be collected separately and should be merged with those of the front image, which may result in loss of information and can be time-consuming. No specific results are reported for plants.