Process of photogrammetry

Metropolitan Museum 3D Hackathon

June 2012
I was one of a number of digital artists and programmers who descended upon the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the museum’s first 3-D scanning and printing Hackathon. The invited guests, along with staff from MakerBot Industries, spent two days photographing museum objects and converting the images into 3-D models, and having fun with the results. The artworks were digitized via a process called photogrammetry by utilizing a new free, cloud-based software called Autodesk 123D Catch. The results were refined uploaded to Thingiverse for anyone to download. The project, using all free software and simple point and shoot cameras, effectively established a prototype for a new way of experiencing and sharing museum collections and artwork. As a result of my contribution to this project I was recently invited back to teach the Met’s first public digital-art workshop in May 2013: From Pixel to Portrait: Sculpting the Figure with Digital Tools.

project links & press

Hackers hacking

Curator’s talking to participants about work from the collection. Photo by Don Pollard

Hackers hacking

Workshop area and results presentation. Photo by Don Pollard

Hackers hacking

Left: Original model produced by 123D Catch. Middle: Subdivided model with image map as displacement. Right: Cleaned up model, using Sculptris, ready for print

3D prints of hacks

My 3D prints derived from scanned classical sculptures. Photo by Artisphere

3D prints of hacks

My 3D prints derived from scanned classical sculptures. Photo by Artisphere