Digital penciling at Luxor Temple using desktop Photoshop tethered to the iPad Pro via the Astropad App

Jul 27, 2020

When Apple (@apple) introduced the iPad Pro, its professional-oriented tablet that works with the Apple Pencil stylus, the Survey began experimenting on its Luxor temple projects to demonstrate the capabilities of these new drawing tools and techniques. ⁣ 

Digital image creation and processing, yet another breakthrough digital addition to the initial process of recording, have also evolved immensely in the past few years. Photogrammetry is the most promising technological achievement that has been utilized in documenting wall scenes. Metashape, provided by Agisoft (@agisoft), brought a plethora of new solutions that could be considered as a digital substitute for creating backgrounds for field documentation purposes. ⁣

This software enables photogrammetric processing of digital images, which then can be used to generate a flat, perspective corrected orthomosaic rendering of large wall segments, producing complete coverage of entire walls in high resolution. With the use of photogrammetry, the Survey were able to exchange their cumbersome photo enlargements for extremely accurate digital photographs, providing color backgrounds for the first time in their long history. ⁣

Furthermore, an immensely useful iOS app, Astropad Studio (@astropadco), allowed the use of the iPad Pro as a makeshift Wacom (@wacom) replacement directly at the monument. Tethered to a laptop through Astropad, the iPad could be used to draw on final layers in the desktop version of Photoshop, eliminating the need for studio work in certain cases. Integrating the powerful new hardware and software tools and drawing techniques with the Epigraphic Survey's traditional documentation principles have culminated in several successful digital projects in the last 5 years.

This post was originally released as part of digitalEPIGRAPHY's growing Instagram collection. If you'd like to see our latest photos as soon as we post them, please follow us on Instagram.

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