I recently wrote a guest blog post for Sketchfab on my methods for recreating built heritage using archives, Blender 3D software and some heritage interpretation. Many thanks to the Sketchfab Cultural Heritage Lead Tom Flynn and the team! 🙂
I’ve been wanting to create a model of this Gothic-revival building for years and finally got around to create one based on my own photographs. Bridlington Cemetery Chapel (as mentioned in one of my old posts) is a Grade II listed building located in Bridlington’s main cemetery off Sewerby Road.
The architect is Alfred Smith of Nottingham and on the front pediment is the date 1879 carved in the stone. It is a beautiful, symmetrical structure in the Victorian Gothic style that has an imposing presence over the cemetery. At the rear, some of the windows are unfortunately boarded up (as of April 2017 when I photographed the building), and so within my model I have replicated the decorated tracery that you can see on the front wings as this would have been the most likely scheme.
I particularly like the symmetrical nature of the structure with the arcades and central tower. For a potential future development, I may consider modelling some of the chapel’s surrounding graveyard to include some foliage and gravestones. This cemetery includes some lovely sculptural headstones which would be a particular challenge to model, but would really place this building within its wider context. This model of Bridlington Cemetery Chapel is a personal project and was created using my own photographs and Blender3D software.
I’m feeling inspired by the recent ‘Archives in 3D’ workshops (which I facilitated in my work capacity as Archives Assistant at the East Riding Archives) where we modelled Hull’s Beverley Gate and King Henry VIII’s Hull Castle using Blender3D and material held in collections at the East Riding Archives. Instead of leaving my Hull Castle model at the WIP stage, I thought I would develop my model further by placing it within its historical context surrounded by buildings of its period and (hopefully) with a textured finish!
Wenceslaus Hollar’s plan and view of Hull, c.1642, is one of the most well-known historical images of the city and features King Henry VIII’s Hull Castle, the four main gatehouses and significant other locations such as Suffolk Palace and Hull Holy Trinity Church. Using Hollar’s representation, which has been reprinted in various historical publications available at several archive services, my next project is to recreate Hollar’s view of the city piece-by-piece beginning with the top section that includes Hull Castle.
Here are a few screenshots of my progress so far:
In addition to the architectural features of the fortifications I will also model some ships, canons and other elements included within Hollar’s representation, which will be new for me having previously only worked with buildings! As you can see, there is a long way to go as I’m starting off with simple geometry and will add more detail later. My next step will be to model more varieties of buildings and ships from the Civil War period and populate the city and river areas, all using Hollar’s view as inspiration.
My book for #3DScanBooks on Sketchfab is “The Buildings of England, Cornwall” by Peter Beacham and Nikolaus Pevsner.
This model was created using Autodesk Remake with 100 photos. I also tried Agisoft Photoscan though the mesh came out much simpler in Remake and Agisoft couldn’t pick up all of the black surfaces. The book cover was very shiny and as I had to take the photographs outside, although the lighting was more even, the weather was slightly windy so there was some slight distortion in the model.
Last Christmas, myself and Si decided to purchase a 3D printer- it is definitely worth it if you have ever considered bringing your digital models to life as tangible objects. The first thing I wanted to print was my Pilgrim Rabbit, a medieval, architectural carving from St Mary’s Church in Beverley which I photographed and created a model using photogrammetric techniques. The print took 4 hours and works by layering PLA filament through a nozzle- it’s amazing to watch the process and there will be more to come!
Here is a quick video of the 3D printing process for my Pilgrim Rabbit:
Last year I was very fortunate to be invited to The National Archives (TNA) in Kew to feature in their Archives Inspire video (above), filmed by the wonderful Magneto Films.
It was a privilege to be filmed alongside the other cast who are all brilliant professionals and it was lovely to revisit TNA after spending a year as one of their Transforming Archives Trainee‘s. The Magneto team were very professional, especially as it was my 1st attempt at being in front of a rather large camera!
Archives Inspire is a four year campaign looking at new ways audiences can experience and use archives- have a look at TNA’s Chief Executive Jeff James’ blog post and the Archives Inspire pages on TNA’s website for more.
Digital is an interesting challenge for the archives sector, where records being produced are increasingly in the digital format (think from large organisation’s records to personal photographs). Over the past decade Archivists have been thinking about how to preserve digital media for accountability, evidential, cultural and research purposes. At present, digital is now becoming central to the archival profession as we hope to preserve these records and facilitate access.
I am particularly interested in the creative uses of archives, especially heritage engagement using 3D models, websites, online exhibitions and videogames. I was very honoured to be able to showcase some of my 3D work in TNA’s Archives Inspire video- you can see my North Bar (Beverley) model in the video showcased using the software Blender 3D. Very grateful that something I’ve been doing for over 5 years is being featured in such an important video.