Aerial Photography and Visualisation for Built Heritage - PhD Portfolio by Kieran Baxter
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Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Ripples Across 900 Miles of Ancient Landscape

During my summer visit to the Galician coast in northern Spain I was intrigued to visit one of the many sites of Cup and Ring rock art which look so familiar from prehistoric sites in Scotland. With the aid of a map, a patient interpreter (thanks Nuria) a long bus journey and a friendly taxi driver we arrived at Laxe das Rodas. The cravings here are particularly well executed, both neat and still deeply inscribed in parts although the rock surface is well exposed and appears to have weathered considerably. The interpretive panel attributes the petroglyphs to the late Bronze Age / early Iron Age. Considering that long-distance travel at that time was likely made along the coast in vessels just a bit more substantial than ocean-going canoes (although surprising sophisticated in examples such as the Dover Boat) it is remarkable to see such striking similarities in contemporary rock art at home, over 900 miles away.

For a point of visual comparison I have included photographs of Achnabreck rock carvings in Argyll, Scotland alongside shots of Laxe das Rodas in Galicia, Spain. Perhaps the most obvious distinction is the weather - unsurprisingly the wet photographs where taken in Scotland, the shots in baking sunshine taken in Spain!

One of the most distinct cup and ring carvings, Laxe das Rodas, Calicia, Spain.
A similar design at Achnabreck, near Kilmartin Glen, Argyll, Scotland.
Another apparent similarity is the choice of location for the carving sites which both command views across the entrances between the coast and inland areas. While Laxe das Rodas is positioned above the entrance to La Ría de Muros y Noya, and is in direct line of site with Castro de Baroña (see previous post), Achnabreck overlooks the modern day Lochgilphead, one of the approaches to Kilmartin Glen, which had much sacred importance in prehistory.

A complex spiral and dot pattern at Laxe das Rodas.
The carvings at Achnabreck include rare "horned spiral" motifs
Of the distinguishing features of the Galician rock art I was interested to see that representational artwork seemed a lot more common, certainly compared to the examples of rock art in Argyll where there are only a few representations of axe heads. There are very small and obscure marks on the Laxe das Rodas spiral above which may represent human figures and more extravagant representations of deer appear at nearby rock art sites. Despite the distingushing characteristics of the two sites, to the untrained eye the similarities in symbology and style are astounding bearing in mind the distances involved.

Note that Google Maps doesn't have the option to provide directions for canoe. Instead this map shows a suggested route between the two sites over land, one which was probably most impractical during the Bronze Age.

Friday, 5 October 2012

What I Did On My Holidays: Kite Photography on the Galician Coast

During September I spent a week on break visiting my girlfriend's home town of A Coruña and a little of the surrounding coast of Galicia in northern Spain. Between experiencing the excellent local hospitality we got out and about, myself with kite in hand, for a glimpse of Galicia's history from above.

Figures walking across the sandy land-bridge to Castro de Baroña.

Our first port of call was the fantastic Iron-Age fortified settlement of Castro de Baroña, one of many hill-fort sites in the area but one which is particularly striking for it's location on a narrow rock peninsular. This semi-island setting is one which is familiar - the strategy of using water as a natural defense is found in many Scottish Crannogs and Brochs as well sites such as St Ninian's Chapel and Dunottar castle.

A vertical shot of the entrance way and first set of houses.
After passing through a narrow entrance way in the imposing defensive walls the visitor arrives at the remains of a series of roundhouses, a style of dwelling also typical in pre-Roman Britian. From above the similarities to a British hill-fort are startlingly apparent.

These ruins have been excavated and later consolidated using concrete, a process which is clearly ongoing as a large section of the outer wall (visible above) and several roundhouses had been recently worked on. Such extensive consolidation is an unfortunate necessity at a site with such high visitor numbers. Our taxi driver explained that although the site is very popular there is little public interpretation (none at all on site) and as such visitors show little respect for the remains without knowing their age and importance.

Recently consolidated roundhouses appear lighter than the others in this view.
Towards evening a haze descended on the coast softening the sunlight which illuminates the general view below, looking towards the opposing peninsular visible in the background. These two outcrops of land overlook the entrance to La Ría de Muros y Noya, a channel of water which is likely to have acted as a transportation link between the interior and the coast.

Both sides of the entrance are marked with ancient remains - Castro de Baroña on the south side and a petroglyph rock carving site, in direct line-of-sight, on the north. Later on we visited the carvings, another clear connection to rock art sites back home, but this will follow in another blog post!

Evening light on the Castro looking across the entrance of the Ría.
Back in A Coruña we visited the iconic Torre de Hércules, a Roman lighthouse restored in the 18th Century. It is the oldest Roman lighthouse to remain in use today and obtained UNESCO World Heritage Site status in 2009.

Torre de Hércules and surrounding coast.
This kite aerial photograph was taken on one of two trips out to the site, on the second attempt high winds hampered kite flying so we climbed the 242 steps to emerge on a very blustery balcony near the top. The remains of foundations from previous incarnations of the tower have been excavated and preserved for viewing under the modern covering built around the base. A fantastic, if tiring, visitor experience!

The star shaped outline of Castillo de San Antón.
Coruña's Castillo de San Antón is another example of sea bound defense which is visually interesting from above. The castle was at one point an island, later linked to the city via a short causeway.

Looking back along the coast from our return flight.
Our flight home offered this fantastic view of the city of Coruña which occupies the narrow peninsula visible just right of center. The strategic advantage of occupying coastal outcrops defending the routes inland seems to be demonstrated all along this coastal region. I found it intriguing to follow these patterns, with repeating themes going back into prehistory and spanning at least a thousand miles back to the Scottish monuments with which I'm familiar.

Although blessed with good weather during our stay we had not nearly enough time to explorer Galicia as much as I would have liked. I look forward to the next visit!

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Thoughts from High Altitude

Reading an interview with the Scottish aerial photographer and artist Patricia Macdonald, given in 2004, I am reminded of a flight which I took a few weeks ago on a particularly fine morning from London Stanstead to Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain. I always relish the opportunity for air travel - nibbling overpriced airline food in the relative comfort of an airline cabin while staring out into the the strange no-man's land of high altitude airspace is a surreal experience. As the landscape slowly evolves from the familiar to the other-worldly I find it easy to be lulled into a state of reflection.

The Cantabrian Mountains, Northern Spain.
The view from the airplane window offers a sense of scale and context which is difficult to grasp from the ground. Passing through layers of cloud, which normally appear as if flattened to the inside of a sphere, reveals their depth and complexity. The vast interaction of land, sea, sun and sky can become visually abstracted, an almost alien world yet one which is in some ways more truthful than a ground level perspective. These paradoxical characteristics of the aerial view are referred to by Macdonald as a "...comprehensiveness [combined] with relative unfamiliarity and a related tendency towards abstraction" (Macdonald, 2004).

Passing over the seaport of Lorient in Brittany, France.
While crossing the bay of Biscay only the occasional ship, barely visible, gives the remotest suggestion of scale. The Atlantic swell mimics the patterns of smaller waves, or of ripples, a fractal effect which tricks the eye. I am reminded of this ever changing, almost hypnotic performance by Macdonalds description:
"The aerial viewpoint allows a strange combination of 'gazing' and 'glancing' (two 'modes' of photographic seeing which are normally distinct), which can lead to what feels like a kind of enhanced awareness" (Macdonald, 2004).
(interview by) Stevenson, S., 2004. Patricia Macdonald in conversation with Sara Stevenson. History of Photography, 28, pp. 43-56.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Upcoming Exhibition of MSc Work

After a year of exploration and experimentation the outcome of my MSc work will exhibit at the Dundee Masters Show from the 17th to the 26th of August. Details of the show are available via the university website here.

My projects have been designed to expand upon a central question of what low altitude aerial photography can bring the representation and visualization of heritage. The suitability of low aerial photographs for the purposes of structure from motion photogrammetry has been key to my investigations and 3D meshes generated in this way are the foundation of my visualization work.

This snowy looking mesh of Jarlshof consists of 1.6 million vertices and was pieced together from thousands of photographs taken from an 8m pole, in order to reach every niche and corner of the monument site. This is compared with a kite aerial photograph taken at a later date with special permission from the nearby air traffic control tower at Sumburgh airport.

The 3D model was created from Photosynth point clouds which were meshed and aligned using Meshlab. Although the very low level pole photographs were ideal for the purpose of generating the detailed mesh, the broad coverage of the kite's views were far better suited for texturing which was done by projecting photographs onto the surface in Mudbox.

This workflow allowed me to capture the site at particular times of day and recreate the environment in 3D, with the potential to manipulate the atmosphere for greater narrative effect. This kind of recreated environment is well suited to demonstrate how reconstructions of lost structures fit into the site as the visitor would find it today. These ideas are the basis of my short film about Jarlshof and it's 4,000 year story, which will be on display during the masters show week.

I was lucky enough to also be involved in research project led by Alice watterson to visualize Skara Brae, a neolithic village on the Orkney Islands. This presented an opportunity to explore these techniques further, looking at the incorporation of live action footage as well as how the same approach can be applied on a macro scale with artifacts.

This still frame shows an example of scratch art from Skara Brae which has been reconstructed using photogrammetry, bringing it into an environment where elements such as the firelight can be added. The finished shot, incorporating pigment added by Aaron Watson, will form part of a collaborative film which will hopes to be aired on site.

During my MSc studies I have raised a lot of question in the course of answering a few. I look forward greeting any and all interested parties at the masters show, which marks the end of a chapter, but not the end of the journey!

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Jarlshof Reconstruction Sequence Draft 2.1

This is the sequence which I have been using as a basis for the reconstructed elements in 3D, as well as the informing the low aerial angles which I will use for each stage of the short Jarlshof film. I've been lucky to have Alice Watterson contributing to the archaeological reconstruction for the Norse and later phases, allowing me to focus on the environment and atmosphere using the captured photography and photogrammetry, as well as reconstructing the prehistoric phases of habitation.

These early phases will be reconstructed where possible using aerial photography from other better surviving sites such as nearby Mousa Broch, or contemporary reconstructions such as the wheelhouse at nearby Scatness.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Completing the Jarlshof Photogrammetry Mesh

The mesh below was created from ten sections of photogrammetry taken with a camera on an eight meter pole in December last year. Although this mesh covers most of the site I was keen to aim for more complete coverage so one of the jobs for my return visit in April was to capture the remaining material needed to fill the holes.

I took a printout of the above plan view of the mesh back on site so that I could target the areas of sparse coverage, highlighted in red. In addition I wanted to extend the mesh into all four corners of the boundary fence and add some low level detail to the enclosed broch wheelhouse structures.

The coloured sections in this images represent the supplementary data captured in April, while the original data is shaded in grey. Over that last few days I've been processing and aligning these sections using the Iterative Closest Point alignment tool in Meshlab. I'm quite happy with the consistency of coverage at this point and the next stage is to stitch these sections together into one seamless mesh.

The original data consisted of 2.8 million vertices and I am adding an additional 0.9 million to that so am expecting the re-meshing process to require even more patience than usual. Once I have a single master mesh this can be broken down into more manageable chunks for texturing and rendering.

St Andrews Kite Aerial Photograph Published in Aurora Magazine

My photograph of St Andrews Cathedral appeared in 'The Big Picture' feature in Aurora, the quarterly customer magazine for Highlands and Islands Airports. This dramatic ruined site makes for a particularly striking low aerial view, although I had to manoeuvre carefully around those lighting conductors!

Monday, 2 July 2012

Glenelg Brochs

I took these photographs during a brief visit to Glenelg to add to my collection of broch references and possibly to inform a reconstruction of Jarlshof broch during it's phases of collapse. Among the best preserved examples of brochs on the mainland they are sheltered within a narrow glen, although despite this I was lucky enough to catch some good wind for kite flying.

Capturing this kite aerial photograph of Dun Telve required manoeuvring the kite line around the branches of the large tree on the left, always a frightening experience! It seems only by luck that these huge trees aren't close enough to have damaged the broch structure over time.

As the wind became more unstable I switched to pole aerial photography for this low level shot of Dun Troddan, which lies in clear line of site from Dun Telve. Here a portion of the stairway remains running between the two skins of the wall. The tall cavities supported by spreader stones are what gives these drystone towers their strength.

Saturday, 30 June 2012

Skara Brae: Masive to Macro

As part of a collaborative effort to visualise Skara Brae I captured a series of kite aerial photographs as a starting point for a 3D reconstruction. Ultimately I aim to create an animated sequence showing an aerial approach to Skara Brae. This will be combined with live action footage, reconstruction and interpretations by both Aaron Watson and Alice Watterson to form a short film which aims to show the multi faceted nature of the site.

Skara Brae is set in a striking location, poised above the sweeping Bay of Skaill. Erosion from the sea here has contributed to both the sites discovery and partial collapse. From above the modern paving becomes particularly obvious, a necessity caused by swelling visitor numbers. One of the modern additions which aim to protect the site is the roofing on house 7, first constructed in glass, and then the turf which is visible here. The need for protection against the erosion caused by visitor numbers at Skara Brae means that many areas are out of access to the public, one of the issues which our visualisation hopes to address.

The house in the foreground here is quite different to the others architecturally (although each of the houses are distinct in some way) and is set aside form the rest of the village leading to speculation that it was used differently, perhaps as a workshop. It's symmetry and strong outline makes it particularly attractive from the air.

As well as the low altitude aerial photography I also spent some time photographing the detailed scratch art which adorns many stones in the houses and passageways. Perhaps the strongest example is this "bed" slab in house 7 which I focused on capturing with a 3D interpretation in mind.

Both these inaccessible details and aerial perspectives represent different kinds of privileged views, normally out of reach from the visitor. The outcome of our visualisation work has the potential not only to give an experiential glimpse of these vantage points but also to contextualise these distinct aspects of the site within each other. I hope to be able to present some more work from this exciting project soon!

Kite Photography in Orkney

I recently had the pleasure of being involved in a collaborative research project working with Aaron Watson and Alice Watterson who organised the project. Focused on Skara Brae, a neolithic village in the Orkney Islands, the project has taken the form of a collaborative mixed media film, which I will post more about soon. In the mean time here are some kite aerial photographs taken during our week of field work around the fantastic ancient monuments of Orkney.

The Ring of Brodgar, Kite Aerial Photograph.

The Ring of Brodgar is a neolithic stone circle and henge roughly contemporary with Skara Brae. It's vast diameter (around 100m) made it particularly difficult to photograph but after a few missed dinners waiting for the illusive evening sunlight we captured this image looking along the narrow spit of land towards the Ness of Brodgar and the Stones of Steness (pictured below).

The Stones of Stenness, Kite Aerial Photograph.
Stenness is a smaller standing stone circle and henge which includes a central hearth. The path which runs through the picture leads to Barnhouse, a neolithic settlement just visible in the background.

Broch of Gurness, Kite Aerial Photograph.
Jumping forward a few thousand years to the Iron Age, a visit to the Broch of Gurness was of interest to my own project which is largely focused on the brochs. John Hamilton speculated that the missing doorway in the broch and courtyard at Jarlshof may have been aligned to create a straight passage way, similar to the entrance here at Gurness, visible on the right.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Photogrammetry Test on a Known Surface

This test was designed to evaluate the procedure which I am using for meshing photogrammetry using Microsoft Photosynth and Meshlab, in a way which will be useful for to me when considering software solutions and recording images for photogrammetry. In particular I was interested to see the relationship between the spacing of pixels (Ground Sampling Distance) and the distribution of point cloud data generated in Photosynth.

I chose the stone slab below as a subject and photographed it using an adjustable pole in order to control the distance between the camera and the surface.

Known Constants-
The slab top measured 1.2m x 0.6m (with a negligible error of ±1mm) giving it a surface area of 0.72m² and a total distance around it's edges of 3.6m. These values were used to calculate pixel sampling distance and point density per area.

The camera used was a Panasonic DMC-LX3 and for the duration of the shoot images were captured at 1/2000 of a second at f/5, 80 ISO and 5.1mm focal length. 15 frames were taken for each sample with a horizontal movement while the camera was positioned perpendicular to the ground.

Know Variables-
Three sample sequences were taken from three different heights, named Low, Mid and High. As the pole was handheld, values for these heights were derived afterwards using Autodesk 123D Catch, although until tested further these values may also include an unknown factor of error.

Unknown Constants-
The accuracy of the mesh was later measured assuming a perfect surface plane as flaws in the geometry of the slab were taken to be irrelevantly small compared to the error being measured. The suitability of colour features on the surface, in this case the grain of the stone, are likely to effect the effectiveness of the photogrammetry considerably.

Unknown Variables-
Motion blur and focus blur within the camera were reduced by careful handling and also by shooting with a fast shutter speed and small aperture. Differences in the distribution of the camera positions for each sample may also effect the results.

The Procedure-
To calculate the ground sampling distance one sample image was selected from each set where the test surface was centred within the frame. The total pixel distance around the edges of the surface was then measured and compared to the known real world distance of 3.6m.

Each of the three sequences of 15 photographs were uploaded to Photosynth and the resulting point clouds were processed in Meshlab. The points associated with the test surface were separated by eye based on their position and colour values. This distinction was quite clear as the test surface was raised for the ground and very little data was captured relating to the sides of the slab.

These original points were then reduced and meshed using the following procedure-

- Compute normals for point sets [Number of neigbors: 10]
- Surface Reconstrution: Poisson [Octree Depth: 14]
- Subdivision Surfaces: LS3 Loop [Iterations: 3]
- Subdivision Surfaces: Catmull-Clark
- Vertex Attribute Transfer: [From point set: Color, Normal, Geometry]
- Remove Duplicate Vertex

The resulting meshed vertices retain the position of original points although some points which fall outside the average surface are ignored, hence the reduced figure of Selected Points shown below. In order to form a useful comparison with the ground sampling distance an average point distribution distance was derived form the point density (assuming for this purpose that the points formed a matrix). In each sample this figure was found to be roughly 30 times the ground sampling distance, suggesting that for every 30 pixels distance you would expect to find, on average, one point sampled from Photosynth.

To assess the accuracy of the meshed surfaces the three samples were aligned by eye to each other and to an estimated true surface (shown below in red) in order to establish a rough vertical scale. A ramp shader was then applied to the surfaces and a histogram derived from each sample showing the vertical distribution of points. We can see that the Low sample has a fairly defined spike as would be expected with a factor of error in the range of around ±10mm. This error broadens as the camera gets further away with the High sample including a factor of error up to ±25mm and an indistinct spike associated with the true surface.


In Conclusion-
The results suggest a linear relationship between ground sampling distance and the distance between points derived from photogrammetry. A factor of error apears to be similarly associated with ground sampling distance. Further testing is required to establish how varying other factors such as the surface and the software used would effect the density and accuracy of points. These values may be improved in other photogrammetry solutions which, unlike Photosynth, are specifically designed for surface meshing. One source of error which stood out during this test occurred around the edge of the surface where the overlapping planes appeared to create "sliding" rouge points.

While photographing using a pole served to simulate the constraints of kite or pole aerial photography for photogrammetry, future tests may be controlled better using a vertical subject photographed from the ground.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Jarlshof: Kite Aerial Photography Within a Controlled Air Traffic Zone

The prehistoric settlement site of Jarlshof is situated just 350 meters from the runway at Sumburgh, the main airport for the Shetland Islands. The site has a complex 4,500 year chronology which best understood from above where the different eras of settlement can be distinguished. For these reasons I chose the site as a main case study for my experimentation, aware that it's position well within a controlled air traffic zone would mean working closely with the demands of Air Traffic Control if permission for my planned kite aerial photography was to be made possible.

The photograph and map above show the proximity of Jarlshof to Sumburgh Airport, in particular the approach to runway 33 which lies a few hundred meters from the site.

In the months before my field trip I was put in touch with the senior air traffic controller at Sumburgh. After establishing the details of the location, the height I would be flying at and the periods I would be flying for, permission was granted at the discretion of the air traffic controller on duty at the time, with the provision that I would be able to land all of my equipment on request if necessary. On arriving in Shetland I was shown the air traffic control tower which is directly across the bay overlooking Jarlshof. It was explained that the on-duty controller is always sat beside an assistant whom I would speak to in the first instance to request permission to fly.

Left: Visiting the air traffic control tower. Jarlshof is visible across the bay in the background
Right: As well regular fixed wing aircraft Sumburgh Airport is frequented by helicopter traffic.

Once the procedures had been established I had a five day window for kite aerial photography with each session dependant on weather and on the demands of air traffic. All told I requested to fly five times, all of them for one hour apart from one sunset session which lasted an hour and a half. Sometimes I was able to fly straight away while on other occasions I had to wait for a quieter period, although the longest I had to wait was an hour. On a couple of occasions I was asked to bring my my equipment down while incoming planes and helicopters passed within close proximity. Where flight paths were far enough away to not be an issue both the pilot and myself would be notified of each others activities and we would both continue. On each occasion I would call to confirm when I was done and my equipment was back on the ground.

Jarlshof is situated on a small outcrop near a sandy bay which would have been used a harbour throughout it's history. Sumburgh Airport is visible just beyond the beach in this kite aerial photograph.

Once again the changeable Shetland weather provided the opportunity for photographs in different lighting conditions, the harsh sunlight above being perhaps the least useful. In bright but overcast conditions I was able to capture some material more suitable for photogrammetry to supplement my previous work with pole aerial photography towards a 3D mesh of the site.

Iron Age broch and wheelhouse structures which lie beneath the 16th Century laird's house.

The ambient light created by overcast weather also provided the best conditions to photograph the broch remains in their entirety, a view which can only be obtained directly above the west corner of the ruined laird's house wall. As usual conditions were most illustrative towards sunset when a low light angle picked up the subtle topography of the site.

Left: Sumburgh Head, the southerly limit of Shetland lies just along the coast from Jarlshof.
Right: The kite and camera rig in action during patchy weather.
Below: In this general view the low light helps to distinguish the different layers of the site.

Low altitude aerial perspectives can provide a sense of depth and context which is often hard to achieve from manned aircraft. These unique shots are part of a wealth of material I was able to capture thanks to favorable weather and the generous assistance of the team at Sumburgh ATC, in particular Alan Smith who arranged provision for my visit. As well as making some very satisfying stills I hope to map some of these sequences onto my 3D representation of the site which in turn will be used as a basis for an interpretative reconstruction of the phases of habitation at Jarlshof.

Further thanks are due to James Gentles and Dave Mitchell who were able to advise based on past experience of KAP within controlled airspace.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Mousa Broch by Charter Boat and Kite

Out of over 500 Broch sites in Scotland Mousa Broch is the only surviver to remain almost at it's complete height. It stands 13m tall on the small uninhabited island of Mousa a short distance from the Shetland South Mainland. During the summer season a daily boat service runs to the island, operated by the ever helpful Jamieson family for the last 40 years. Unfortunately this year of all years the business changed ownership leaving my access to the island literary high and dry during my week long field trip at the start of April.

Left: The Mousa Ferry as I found it on arrival to Shetland. Notice that it is not in the water.
Right: Mousa island as seen from the South Mainland. The Broch is visible to the right hand side.

After making enquiries locally I contacted Shetland Sea Charters who operate the MV Alluvion out of Lerwick to arrange provision for a day trip to the island. Choosing a day when the weather was bright, albeit of the usual 'changeable' Shetland character, we motored out of Cunningsburgh and, rather than heading for the pier on Mousa, we went straight to the outcrop where the Broch stands to try some kite photography from the water.

Left: Fine weather conditions as we approached Mousa Island onboard the MV Alluvion.
Right: The MV Alluvion and crew as seen from the kite. Launching and landing my equipment on that stern deck was something of a challenge, but luckily help was on hand.

With a great deal of patience and skill from the skipper and crew we positioned the boat just beyond the rocky shore to shoot these photographs looking down on the Broch within it's island context.

Rig and furrow earthworks are visible running across the land behind Mousa Broch along with later wall and building structures. The rocky outcrop is typical for a Broch setting.

We then landed on the island to take more kite aerial photographs from the landward side, including some material suitable for photogrammetry. As the weather fluctuated between periods of sunshine, cloud and snow showers I was able to take photographs in different lighting conditions all around the broch exterior and interior.

On close inspection a courtyard wall is visible as a line of stones under the grass on the landward side of the broch. There are other features which suggest that a larger settlement extended beyond the Broch itself although the site has never been excavated.

As a particularly heavy snow shower set in we made haste back onboard the MV Alluvion, which had not been idle judging by the crate of fish on deck, and headed back again to the seaward side of the broch for some final kite shots.

A dusting of snow has remained un-melted in the shadows of this image naturally relieving the contrast. The site is particularly pleasing from this angle where the relationship between the monument and the surrounding land is very clear. The paths which radiate from the broch have probably been created by a combination of tourists and sheep taking shelter around the Broch site. This relatively untouched land may give a feeling for how it may have looked when the broch was inhabited and the shaping forces would have been restricted to manual farming and the movements of people and animals.

Some very satisfying results from a sucessfull day's flying and sailing!