This application enables the creation of a high quality 3D model of an archaeological artefact via process known as photo-masking. There has been a revolution in 3D modelling in recent years and it is now relatively easy to construct such models from ordinary digital photographs. Isolating the object depicted in these photographs, and masking out the background, is an important first step to achieving high quality results. The final 3D model will be made publicly available and is useful not only for basic documentation purposes, but also for graphical displays in museums, for inclusion in gaming and virtual reality environments, or for identifying different sub-styles in otherwise similar types of artefact (that might tell us about the date of the artefact, where it was made, or by whom).
This particular photo-masking application is looking at three objects from the collections of the Mary Rose Museum:
The staved wooden vessels recovered from the Mary Rose (sunk 1545, raised 1982) of which this wooden drinking tankard was one, provide the largest assemblage of domestic wooden vessels yet recovered in the British Isles.
Made from seven staves and held together with hoops, this tankard also retained much of the pitch lining that made it watertight. Oak, poplar, pine, beech and willow were all used in its construction. A small “X” shaped mark can clearly be seen on the lid and this is probably a mark to indicate ownership.
This bone plaque carving was recovered from inside a chest found on the Main Deck of the Mary Rose (sunk 1545, raised 1982). It depicts two angels in profile walking in a procession to the right each carrying a candle.
It is similar to plaques made for triptychs in the Northern Italian workshops of the Embriachi family (late 14th and early 15 Century. They produced a variety of luxury objects (mirrors, caskets and triptychs) incorporating a series of bone or ivory plaques. Triptychs, often used as altar pieces or for private prayer, displayed scenes of a religious nature.
In total, over 60 bowls were raised during the excavations on board the Mary Rose (sunk 1545, raised 1982). This is one of 30 beech bowls recovered. The bowl was manufactured on a pole lathe from a section of timber. Some of the circular grooves from this method of manufacture can clearly be seen.
The bowls were recovered from all over the ship. Smaller ones are thought to be drinking bowls and many bear crude marks scored into the wood. This bowl has a complex series of linear marks and initials on the inside and outside, thought to denote ownership.
We would like people to draw a polygon around the object that they see in each photograph in order to identify its outline and exclude the image background. This allows the 3D modelling process to concentrate on the object itself and ignore irrelevant background information.
If you are interested in what a 3D completed model looks like, please have a look at the example here for a MicroPasts palstave model.