An alternative approach to laser scanning is photogrammetry, photographs can be taken with a digital camera and aligned together, the camera positions are then calculated and a point cloud is produced. There are some advantages to using a photogrammetry method, it requires little user expertise, there’s no need for expensive 3D scanning equipment and it can produce relatively accurate 3D digital models based only on photographs taken with a standard camera. My colleague Baz Armstrong had already tested Photofly and posted his results on his Flickr page.
With free access to Photofly – now called Autodesk 123D – I decided to arrange a visit to the church at Bunbury and scan the Tomb (some of these images can be seen here). The intention is to use some of the data recorded to allow for the building of a base mesh in 3D Max that would conform to something like the effigy on the Neville Tomb.