The step build approach is providing some initial problems in developing a clean mesh. The image here highlights how time-consuming the process could become if continued. Maintaining control of the topology and keeping a clean quaded mesh would need a different approach, and I’m not sure that it’s practical at the moment.
The next image shows the base mesh and a mesh using the conform re-topology method as well as a mesh built using a more traditional approach using the scanned data as reference only.
In Geomagic the data was assembled and holes were filled where appropriate. I initially imported to 3D Coat but I’ve found I prefer 3D Max for retpoplogy. Taking some of the basic carved forms I’m looking at using the step build method and then exporting to Mudbox.
Basic surface retopology using the step-build method in 3D Studio Max 2012
Exported retoplogised mesh into Mudbox 2012
Geomagic Studio transforms 3D scan data into usable 3D polygonal, surface and CAD data, with parametric integration for MCAD products (CATIA, Autodesk Inventor, Creo Elements/Pro (Pro/ENGINEER), SolidWorks), using automated and tools for 3D creation and imaging.
The resulting scan data was patchy, but there was enough to be able to use to reconstruct the largely repetitive elements that surround the tomb. Once I had the data on my computer I needed to check it over a composited Photoshop file. I added some colour overlays to help make sense of where they were located on the surface.
Surface Scanning the Tomb
The tomb of Sir John Neville is located in the South Aisle at Durham Cathedral. There seems to be conflicting opinion as to how the tomb became so badly vandalised. Whether by Scots prisoners of war in the 1600’s or during the many violent periods of social and religious upheaval in Durham’s history, its remaining alabaster figures have been severely damaged over time. Typical of the age of its construction, to the medieval observer this carved representation with its use of typifaction, heraldic iconography and polychromatic paint and gilt, provided not only a focus of devotion and memory, but of an ideal of the notion of chivalry and of political power and affiliation. It therefore provides the researcher with an opportunity to examine alternative methods and workflows within archaeological visualisation and further provides an opportunity to critically evaluate approaches to deliberately mediated sculptural surrogates and their location within historical representation.
I’d made an initial visit in July, where I’d first encountered the Neville Tombs and so a second visit to was made in mid September and a series of scans taken of the surface with the School portable 3D scanner. The Minolta scanner captures the object surface from a single point. On activation of the scanner, the laser moves across the target object. The laser touches the object and the light is reflected back to the scanner, which captures the surface data of the shape, and records the measurement of an object at a distance between 4 mm or 3 metres. The measurements are translated into an impact location, and are then displayed by the software as cloud point data, or cloud data which initially form the 3D shape of the recorded object in the 3D software. There was a certain amount of restriction given the location of the Tomb, however enough data was captured to enable a decent attempt at some test retopology.
The Minolta 3D Scanner used to scan the surface topology of the tomb of Sir John Neville: Photo F Fitzpatrick 30/09/11
I’ll be posting some of the work I’ve done up to now over the next few days. Below is the Poster Presentation submitted as part of the School’s Technologies of Drawing Conference (26/08/11) with the Sculpture Network. The conference marked the conclusion of a 4-day international drawing symposium for sculpture network artists, the outcomes of which shown to conference participants.
My name is Frank Fitzpatrick and I am currently a Senior Lecturer and Course Leader at Huddersfield University. As part of my research into digital sculpting tools for archaeological and historical illustration and remediation, this blog will act as a forum and showcase for ongoing investigation and related topics.
I am part of the University’s School of Art, Design and Architecture and based at the University Campus Oldham where we deliver the BA(Hons) Digital Arts Practice course. My interest in digital sculpting stems from the development of our Games Art programme. With 10 years industry experience as a graphic designer and a subsequent 14+ years teaching in digital 2D apps and workflows for Multimedia Design, a more recent wish to explore 3D space has resulted in a profound change in my teaching interests and a real passion for investigating tools and workflows that could play a part in archaeological and historical illustration and remediation.