Visualization Techniques and Rock Art: Advances in Analysis and Opportunities for Interpretation

Australian Archaeological Association conference, Wollongong, Dec 2012

Prof Alistair Paterson, Paul Bourke, Prof Jo McDonald


Data capture and visualisation technologies are developing dramatically, providing opportunities to archaeological researchers for more meaningful engagement with stakeholder communities, cultural resource managers, and tourists. This paper describes the photographic techniques used in the visualisation of a Pilbara rock art site called Wannamanna. The 3D reconstruction and use of Gigapan Technology were mobilised to enhance recording and to facilitate research methodologies. These techniques when combined with the use of ArcGIS and detailed recording of the rock art using portable recording devices provide excellent research conditions for the analysis of style and spatial characteristics (topics investigated by two Honours students in the Rock Art Centre at UWA). These digital techniques provide easily accessible and visually stunning records of the rock art. These types of technologies provide opportunities for visually communicating research results to Aboriginal communities wishing to manage their heritage in a range of contexts, to cultural resource managers and to tourists in interpretive displays.