Penciling on photo enlargement at Medinet Habu using the traditional Chicago House Method

Instagram May 26. 2020

To learn about the traditional Chicago House method, click here.

According to the Epigraphic Survey’s traditional documentation method, the initial pencil drawing is carefully traced onto the surface of the photo enlargement. In order to render the inscriptions with optimal precision, one must use a light source to rake the relief from every possible angle.⠀ ⠀

Capturing the style of the ancient Egyptian scene is just as important as reproducing every line and detail, either carved or painted. Therefore, when creating the initial facsimile drawing at the monument, the artist’s experience and familiarity with the stylistic nuances of a certain historical period is highly relied upon. ⠀ ⠀

In cases where the relief has been modified in antiquity (for example when divine names and figures erased in the reign of Akhenaten and subsequently restored), any visible traces of the earlier versions are indicated. Significant surface elements where affecting or interrupting the carved remains are also outlined on the pencil drawing. ⠀ ⠀

What hasn’t changed with the Survey’s digital evolution is that while at the wall, the artist must make extensive notes in order to provide relevant information for the publication and to help facilitating the inking process in the studio.

This post was originally released as part of digitalEPIGRAPHY's growing Instagram collection. If you'd like to see our latest photos as soon as we post them, please follow us on Instagram.⠀ ⠀

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