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Found 23 results

  1. Costa Rica

    I know that Costa Rica has a policy of confiscating natural items, so my plan is to photograph them. I read of a tourist attempting to drive fossils she bought and being charged with smuggling items of natural wonder, no bueno. That being said most I have found online is concerned with collecting and the prohibition of it. Does anyone know of any books about costa rican fossils and sites, books about costa rican geology, personal account, etc etc I have heard of some beaches on the pacific coast with petrified wood.
  2. New Scope and Lenses

    Was surprised to receive a few packages very far ahead of anticipated delivery date. The first is an OMAX 3.5x - 90x trinocular scope with boom arm. If I'm going to be doing more detailed prep, a stereo scope with boom arm to position over a blast box is an absolute must. Of course, it came in a zillion pieces and the instruction manual was for an entirely different model that bore very little resemblance to the one I was putting together. But after an hour of trial and error - and some very colourful language - it is all assembled. I've taken it out for its test run, and works great with wide-field eye pieces and a Barlow lens so I can work at a reasonable distance. The magnification is not high, but any higher would not be useful for prep. Blowing up a half inch specimen to a large detailed view is sufficient enough to get at the nooks and crannies. The software it came with was not going to be helpful to me as it came on a CD (Mac discontinued CD/DVD drives on their machines a few iterations ago), and so after some online hunting I found the right software for download. Still a lot to learn about microscope photography as what you see in the eye piece is not necessarily what you see on the screen. It also means pulling out a stop to divert light from one of the eye pieces to the mounted camera. Eventually I'll figure out how to match up the eye view to the camera view (there is some helpful advice online, and a lot of things I can adjust in the software). So pictured here was just a quick and simple (if not fuzzy) first snap of a 5mm Itagnostus interstricta. I know, fuzzy... As I said, a lot to learn! Second item are these handy jeweller's glasses with lenses of different strength to swap in and out as needed. The little LED lights on the side are very helpful. These will be useful when I'm doing sewing needle prep and need my hands free (rather than holding a loupe). Also handy when I need to have a quick look at some detail in the field when I'm away from the scope. Oh, and they also makes me look like a demented 1950s sci-fi villain, which will help frighten door-to-door salespeople or small children. Ah, new toys!
  3. Microfossil photography

    Hey everyone, I am wondering if anyone knows a professional microscope that can be used to photograph microfossils. I need to make pictures of fossils such as bonefish teeth, ptychotrygon teeth, etc, that are 2-3 mm big. Does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for any help.
  4. Lighting for amber photography

    Working on my amber photography setup. Right now, having issues with lighting the insect up properly. Still working on getting the focus correct, just switched to a steomicroscope with a c-mount adapter for my Cannon Rebel. Shooting remotely with the EOS app. Lighting with the scope's backlight and a dual arm microscope light. Any ideas?
  5. Petrified Wood?

    From the album Fossil Photo-Shoot: 1

    Using this image for a post this may be updated depending on the outcome.
  6. Petrified Wood?

    From the album Fossil Photo-Shoot: 1

    Using this image for a post this may be updated depending on the outcome.
  7. Petrified Wood?

    From the album Fossil Photo-Shoot: 1

    Using this image for a post this may be updated depending on the outcome.
  8. Petrified Wood?

    From the album Fossil Photo-Shoot: 1

    Using image for a post at the moment this may be updated depending on the outcome.
  9. Mount Isa photographer shares his tricks for taking photos of sand-grain sized fossils By Harriet Tatham, ABC North West Qld http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-06-28/how-to--photograph-a-fossil-the-size-of-a-sand-grain/8650976 Yours, Paul H.
  10. These are a few of the pdf files (and a few Microsoft Word documents) that I've accumulated in my web browsing. MOST of these are hyperlinked to their source. If you want one that is not hyperlinked or if the link isn't working, e-mail me at joegallo1954@gmail.com and I'll be happy to send it to you. Please note that this list will be updated continuously as I find more available resources. All of these files are freely available on the Internet so there should be no copyright issues. Articles with author names in RED are new additions since May 8, 2017. Excavation, Preservation, Preparation and Imaging Abbott, R.E. and M.L. Abbott (1952). A Simple Paleobotanical Transfer Technique. The Ohio Journal of Science, 52(5). Adams, T.L., et al. (2010). High Resolution Three-Dimensional Laser Scanning of the Type Specimen of Eubrontes (?) glenrosensis Shuler, 1935, from the Comanchean (Lower Cretaceous) of Texas: Implications for Digital Archiving and Preservation. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.13, Issue 3. Araujo, R., C. Natario and M. Pound (2011). How to Mount an Inexpensive Sieving Lab. Journal of Paleontological Techniques, Number 9. Araujo, R., et al. (2009). Preparation Techniques Applied to a Stegosaurian Dinosaur from Portugal. Journal of Paleontological Techniques, Number 5. Arenstein, R.P., A. Davidson, and L. Kronthal (2004). An Investigation of Cyclododecane for Molding Fossil Specimens. Azar, D. (1997). A New Method for Extracting Plant and Insect Fossils from Lebanese Amber. Palaeontology, Vol.40, Part 4. Behrensmeyer, A.K. and J.C. Barry (2005). Biostratigraphic Surveys in the Siwaliks of Pakistan: A Method for Standardized Surface Sampling of the Vertebrate Fossil Record. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.8, Number 1. Bengtson, S. (2000). Teasing Fossils out of Shales with Cameras and Computers. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.3, Issue 1. Bercovici, A., A. Hadley and U. Villanueva-Amadoz (2009). Improving Depth of Field Resolution for Palynologial Photomicrography. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.12, Issue 2. Bisulca, C., et al. (2012). Variation in the Deterioration of Fossil Resins and Implication for the Conservation of Fossils in Amber. American Museum Novitates, Number 3734. Block, S., et al. (2016). Where to Dig for Fossils: Combining Climate-Envelope, Taphonomy and Discovery Models. PLoS ONE, 11(3). Brand, L. and G. Dupper (1982). Dental Impression Materials Useful for Making Molds of Fossils. Journal of Paleontology, Vol.56, Number 5. Brown, G. Molding and Casting an in situ Articulated Skeleton in Soft Matrix: A Case Study from the Ashfall Fossil Beds, Nebraska. Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Preparator's Resources. Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane and W.G. Parker (eds.) (2009). Methods in Preparation. Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium. Brown, M., et al. (2012). Defining the Professional Vertebrate Fossil Preparator: Essential Competencies. Society of Vertebrate Paleontology. Burke Museum (2010). Fossil Preparation Laboratory Manual. The Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture. Cavigelli, J.P. (2009). Micropreparation...one grain of sand at a time. In: Methods In Fossil Preparation: Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium, Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane and W.G. Parker (eds.) Caze, B., D. Merle and S. Schneider (2015). UV Light Reveals the Diversity of Jurassic Shell Colour Patterns: Examples from the Cordebugle Lagerstätte (Calvados, France). PLoS ONE, 10(6). (Thanks to doushantuo for pointing this one out.) Cherney, M. (2009). Creating a multi-use polyurethane mold with a replaceable pour spout. In: Methods In Fossil Preparation: Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium, Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane and W.G. Parker (eds.) Chia, S. (2002). A Study on the Cleaning Methods of Stone Artifacts. The Second Asia Fellows Program Annual Conference on "Globalizing Asia: Shifting Identities and Continuity". Chinsamy, A. and M.A. Raath (1992). Preparation of Fossil Bone for Histological Examination. Palaeont.afr., 29. Cifelli, R.L. (1996). Techniques for Recovery and Preservation of Microvertebrate Fossils. Oklahoma Geological Survey, Special Publication, 96-4. Collinson, C. (1963). Collection and Preparation of Conodonts Through Mass Production Techniques. Illinois State Geological Survey, Circular 343. Collinson, M.E. Pyrite Conservation. In: Fossil Plants of the London Clay. Cornish, L. and A. Doyle (1984). The Use of Ethanolamine Thioglycollate in the Conservation of Pyritized Fossils. Palaeontology, Vol.27, Part 2. Daniel, S.L. (2007). A Mammoth of a Project: The Conservation of a Columbian Mammoth. Masters Thesis - Texas A&M University. Davidson, A. (2009). A Report on a Mini-Seminar on Adhesives for Fossil Preparation. In: Methods In Fossil Preparation: Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium, Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane, and W.G. Parker (eds.). Davidson, A. and S. Alderson (2009). An introduction to solution and reaction adhesives for fossil preparation. In: Methods In Fossil Preparation: Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium, Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane and W.G. Parker (eds.) Davidson, A., S. Alderson, and M. Fox (2006). Assembling an Archival Marking Kit for Paleontological Specimens. 66th Annual Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Meeting. Davidson, J.P. and M.J. Everhart (2017). Scattered and shattered: A brief history of the early methods of digging, preserving and transporting Kansas fossils. Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science, Vol.120, Numbers 3-4. de la Torre, I., et al. (2015). Archaeological fieldwork techniques in Stone Age sites. Some case studies. Treballs d'Arqueologia, Number 20. Elder, A.S., C. Wenz, and S.K. Madsen (1998). Understanding Cyanoacrylate Adhesives and Consolidants and Their Use in Vertebrate Paleontology. In: Partners Preserving Our Past, Planning Our Future- Proceedings for the Fifth Conference on Fossil Resources, Martin, J.E., J.W. Hoganson, and R.C. Benton (eds.), Dakoterra, Vol.5. Elder, A., et al. (1997). Adhesives and Consolidants in Geological and Paleontological Conservation: A Wall Chart. SPNHC Leaflets, Vol.1, Number 2. (TEXT) Elder, A., et al. (1997). Adhesives and Consolidants in Geological and Paleontological Conservation: A Wall Chart. SPNHC Leaflets, Vol.1, Number 2 (CHART) Emerson, C., et al. (2015). An Object-Oriented Approach to Extracting Productive Fossil Localities from Remotely Sensed Imagery. Remote Sens., 7. Eshet, Y. and R. Hoek (1996). Palynological processing of organic-rich rock, or: How many times have you called a palyniferous sample "barren"? Review of Paleobotany and Palynology, 94. Espinoza, E.O., et al. (1990). A Method for Differentiating Modern from Ancient Proboscidean Ivory in Worked Objects. Current Research in the Pleistocene, Vol.7. Evander, R.L. (2010). Special Methods of Acid Preparation. American Museum of Natural History. Evander, R.L. (1991). Standard Preparation Technique for Fossil Fish from the Romualdo Member of the Santana Formation. American Museum of Natural History. Falkingham, P.L. (2013). Low Cost 3D Scanning Using Off-The-Shelf Video Gaming Peripherals. Journal of Paleontological Techniques, Number 11. Freeman, E.F. (1982). Fossil Bone Recovery from Sediment Residues by the 'Interfacial Method'. Palaeontology, Vol.25, Part 3. Fox, M. (2009). Basic Field Preparation Tips. Peabody Museum of Natural History - Yale University. Fox, M. (2001). Searching for the Filler of My Dreams - An Odyssey in Gaps and Glues. Peabody Museum of Natural History - Yale University. Fox, M. Basics of Moldmaking. Peabody Museum of Natural History - Yale University. Gillespie, R. (1984). Radiocarbon User's Handbook. Oxford University Committee for Archaeology. Groom, S. (2001). Treatment of a Skeleton of the Extinct Marsupial Zygomaturus tasmanicus: A Technical Note. AICCM Bulletin. Hamilton, D.L. (1998). Methods of Conserving Archaeological Material from Underwater Sites. Conservation Research Laboratory - Center for Maritime Archaeology and Conservation, Texas A&M University. Hammer, O., et al. (2002). Imaging Fossils Using Refletance Transformation and Interactive Manipulation of Virtual Light Sources. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.5, Issue 1. Haug, C., et al. (2009). New Methods to Document Fossils from Lithographic Limestones of Southern Germany and Lebanon. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.12, Issue 3. Haugrud, S.J. and B.P. Compton (2008). Reversible Filler: A Fresh Look at Butvar-76. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, Vol.28, Supplement 3. Herzog, N. (2000). Preparation, Casting and Exhibition of Texas Aetosaur, Desmatosuchus. Masters Thesis - Texas Tech University. Hoffmann, R., et al. (2014). Non-invasive imaging methods applied to neo- and paleo-ontological cephalopod research. Biogeosciences, 11. Holmes, J. and J. Lopez (1986). The Disappearing Peel Technique: An Improved Method for Studying Permineralized Plant Tissues. Palaeontology, Vol.29, Part 4. Honjo, S., et al. (1968). Note on Serial Sectioning of Fossil Specimen by Wheel-Saw Cutter. Journal of the Faculty of Science, Hokkaido University, Series 4, Geology and mineralogy, 14(2). Jabo, S.J., P.A. Kroehler, and F.V. Grady (2005). A Technique to Create Form-Fitted, Padded Plaster Jackets for Conserving Vertebrate Fossil Specimens. Jarochowska, E., et al. (2013). An acid-free method of microfossil extraction from clay-rich lithologies using the surfactant Rewoquat. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.16, Issue 3. Jeremiah, C.J. (1980). Fiberglass Molding Techniques in Paleontology. The Plaster Jacket, Number 35. (Thanks to Nimravus for pointing this one out!) Kesling, R.V. (1957). A Peel Technique for Ostracod Carapaces, and Structures Revealed Therewith in Hibbardia lacrimosa (Swartz and Oriel). Contributions from the Museum of Paleontology - University of Michigan, Vol.XIV, Number 4. Knappertsbusch, M.W. (2002). Stereographic Virtual Reality Representations of Microfossils in Light Microscopy. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.5, Issue 1. Knappertsbusch, M.W., K.R. Brown and H.R. Ruegg (2006). Positioning and Enhanced Stereographic Imaging of Microfossils in Reflected Light. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.9, Issue 2. Kouwenburg, L.L.R., R.R. Hines and J.C. McElwain (2007). A new transfer technique to extract and process thin and fragmented fossil cuticle using polyester overlays. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 145. Madsen, S.K. (2009). Wax On, Wax Off: A Guide to Fossil Vertebrate Micropreparation. Mallison, H., A. Hohloch and H.-U. Pfretzshner (2009). Mechanical Digitizing for Paleontology - New and Improved Techniques. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.12, Issue 2. Maltese, A. (2009). Difficult excavation and preparation of a large Daspletosaurus specimen. In: Methods In Fossil Preparation: Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium, Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane and W.G. Parker (eds.) Massare, J.A. and D.R. Lomax (2014). Recognizing Composite Specimens of Jurassic Ichthyosaurs in Historical Collections. The Geological Curator, 10(1). (Note: Article begins on page 9. Thanks to doushantuo for locating this one!) Mateus, O., M. Overbeeke, and F. Rita (2008). Dinosaur Frauds, Hoaxes and "Frankensteins": How to Distinguish Fake and Genuine Vertebrate Fossils. Journal of Paleontological Techniques, Number 2. McQuilkin, K.S. (1998). An Articulated Phytosaur: Preparation Techniques from Field to Exhibit. Masters Thesis - Texas Tech University. Mietchen, D., et al. (2008). Three-dimensional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of fossils across taxa. Biogeosciences, 5. Newman, A. (1988). Pyrite Oxidation and Museum Collections: A Review of Theory and Conservation Treatments. The Geological Curator, 6(10). Nielsen, J.K. and S.L. Jakobsen (2004). Extraction of Calcareous Macrofossils from the Upper Cretaceous White Chalk and Other Sedimentary Carbonates in Denmark and Sweden: The Acid-Hot Water Method and the Waterblasting Technique. Paleontologia Electronica, 7(4). Nielsen, J.K. and J. Maiboe (2000). Epofix and Vacuum: An Easy Method to Make Casts of Hard Substances. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.3, Issue 1, Article 2. Nolan, T.C., R.L. Atkinson, and B.J. Small (2009). The Use of Linear Collapsible Foam for Molding Fossil Footprints in the Field. In: Methods In Fossil Preparation: Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium, Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane and W.G. Parker (eds.) Panofsky, A.I. (1998). Stanford Paleoparadoxia Fossil Skeleton Mounting. SLAC-PUB-7829. Parks, P. (1972). Preparation of Small Vertebrate Fossils. Anatomy Department - The University of Chicago. Popa, M.E. (2011). Field and Laboratory Techniques in Plant Compressions: An Integrated Approach. Acta Palaeontologica Romaniae, Vol.7. Pruvost, M., et al. (2007). Freshly excavated fossil bones are best for amplification of ancient DNA. PNAS, Vol.104, Number 3. Purnell, M.A. (2003). Casting, Replication and Anaglyph Stereo Imaging of Microscopic Detail in Fossils, With Examples From Conodonts and Other Jawless Vertebrates. Palaeontologia Electronica, 6(2). Reser, P.K. and S. Williams Maximizing Situational Conservation and Minimizing Visual Ambiguity to Reveal Toothmarks on an Osteoderm of Typothorax coccinarum, in Typical Late Triassic Chinle Formation Preservation, Using Cyanoacrylate and Ground Matrix Exclusively. Rice, K., et al. (2015). New Technique to Remove Asphalt from Microfossil-rich Matrix from Rancho La Brea. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Science Series Number 42. Riding, J.B., and J.E. Kyffin-Hughes (2004). A Review of the Laboratory Preparation of Palynomorphs with a Description of an Effective Non-Acid Technique. Revista Brasileira de Paleontologia, 7(1). Riquelme, F., J.L. Ruvalcaba-Sil and J. Alvarado-Ortega (2009). Palaeometry: Non-destructive analysis of fossil materials. Boletin de la Sociedad Geologica Mexicana, Vol.61, Number 2. Rixon, A.E. and M.J. Meade (1960). Glass Fibre Resin Casts of Fossils. Palaeontology. Rohland, N. and M. Hofreiter (2007). Ancient DNA extraction from bones and teeth. Nature Protocols, Vol.2, Number 7. Rohland, N., H. Siedel and M. Hofreiter (2009). A rapid column-based ancient DNA extraction method for increased sample throughput. Molecular Ecology Resources. Roubach, S., et al. (2014). Preparation of a Turtle Fossil from the Pliocene Site of Camp Del Ninots (Caldes de Malavella, Girona, Spain). Journal of Paleontological Techniques, Number 13. Saini-Eidukat, B. and P.W. Weiblen (1996). Liberation of Fossils Using High Voltage Electric Pulses. Curator, Vol.39. Schaff, C.R. Procedures in Collecting Fossil Vertebrates. Schiebout, J.A., S. Ting and J.T. Sankey (1998). Microvertebrate Concentrations in Pedogenic Nodule Conglomerates: Recognizing the Rocks and Recovering and Interpreting the Fossils. Palaeontologia Electronica, Issue 2. Schilling, R., et al. (2014). Reviving the Dinosaur: Virtual Reconstruction and Three-dimensional Printing of a Dinosaur Vertebra. Radiology, Vol.270, Number 3. Selden, P.A. (2003). Vol.3, Part 1.A new tool for fossil preparation. The Geological Curator, 7(9). Stein, W.W. Field Journal Documentation Procedures Part One: The Site Description: Examples of What Data to Collect at a Fossil Dig Site. The Journal of Paleontological Sciences: JPS.TD.07.0002. Stein, W.E., D.C. Wight and C.B. Beck (1982). Techniques for Preparation of Pyrite and Limonite Permineralizations. Review of Paleobotany and Palynology, 36. Stone, R. (2010). Altering the Past: China's Faked Fossils Problem. Science, Vol.330 Storch, P.S. Field and Laboratory Methods for Handling Osseous Materials. Minnesota Historical Society. Sutton, M.D., et al. (2001). Methodologies for the Visualization and Reconstruction of Three-Dimensional Fossils from the Silurian Herefordshire Lagerstatte. Palaeontologia Electronica, Vol.4, Issue 1. Tischlinger, H. and G. Arratia (2013). Ultraviolet light as a tool for investigating Mesozoic fishes, with a focus on the ichthyofauna of the Solnhofen archipelago. In: Mesozoic Fishes 5 - Global Diversity and Evolution. Arratia, G., H.-P. Schultz and M.V.H. Wilson (eds.), Verlag Dr. Friedrich Pfeil, Munich. Triplehorn, D.M. (2002). An Easy Way to Remove Fossils from Sandstones: DMSO Disaggregation. J.Paleont., 76(2). Val, A., et al. (2011). 3D techniques and fossil identification: An elephant shrew hemi-mandible from the Malapa site. S.Afr.J.Sci., 107(11/12). Val, S., R. Garcia and D. Lopez (2014). Preliminary Results on the Chemical Preparation of Dinosaur Eggshells. Journal of Paleontological Techniques, Number 13. Viegas, P.A. and M.J. Benton (2014). The Bristol Dinosaur Project: A Conservation and Preservation Overview. Journal of Paleontological Techniques, Number 13. Ward, D.J. (1984). Collecting isolated microvertebrate fossils. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 82. (Thanks to doushantuo for finding this one!) Whybrow, P.J. (1985). A History of Fossil Collecting and Preparation Techniques. Curator, 28/1. Wienert, H.W. (1960). Techniques in the Photography of Fossilized Plants. Contributions from the Museum of Paleontology - The University of Michigan, Vol.XV, Number 6. Wienert, H.W. (1960). A Simple Device for Single-Lens Stereophotography of Paleontological Specimens. Contributions from the Museum of Paleontology - The University of Michigan, Vol.XV, Number 5. Wood, J.R. and J.M. Wilmshurst (2016). A protocol for subsampling Late Quaternary coprolites for multi-proxy analysis. Quaternary Research, 138. Wylie, C.D. (2009). Preparation in Action: Paleontological Skill and the Role of the Fossil Preparator. In: Methods in Fossil Preparation: Proceedings of the First Annual Fossil Preparation and Collections Symposium. Brown, M.A., J.F. Kane and W.G. Parker (eds.) Appendix U. Curatorial Care of Paleontological and Geological Collections. NPS Museum Handbook, Part I.
  11. I decided to do a little experiment yesterday after reading a little about photogrammetry and how it's being used in archaeology for 3D scanning sites. The idea of digitizing fossils in 3D is very, very cool to me. I decided to do a little more research on it and possibly give it a try. For this experiment: All software was completely free. I didn't use an expensive camera....In fact, I used my smartphone to take all the photos. Image size was only 1000x1000px and quality wasn't that great (it's a phone) I didn't have a good light setup. I used the flash on my phone. I had no experience with any of this prior to this experiment. For the subject, I used a whale vert that has some odd preservation. It seems like it was crushed a little during fossilization. The whole thing is off center and cracked in a lot of places. I thought it would be a good fossil to play around with for this. So, I took 46 photos at different angles all around the fossil, making sure to keep the distance the same and tried my best to keep my phone's camera in focus. There were two main steps after the photos were taken. 1. Create a point cloud that could be put into a program and used to make a 3D model from the 46 2D photographs 2. Use the same 46 images to create a texture to apply to the new 3D model. Thankfully, both steps were much easier than I expected them to be thanks to some software created as research projects by different students in a few different universities. I'm happy with the results considering it was done with free software and a cell phone. I could have used higher resolution photos and it probably would have looked nicer, but I didn't for this first test. I plan on messing around with this sort of thing more. There's tons of filters and options in the different programs that I haven't tested to see what they would do...and I haven't even tried a real camera with better lighting yet. I'm guessing that a good camera in direct sunlight would make a huge difference. A couple of things on the model didn't come out right, but that was probably just because I didn't get enough photos from different angles in certain places. Also, the bottom of the vert where it was sitting on the table obviously didn't get photographed, so it's just black. I'm sure you could flip the thing over, do the whole thing again and then put it all together, but that would require a lot more experience with these programs. If anybody is interested in playing around with this themselves, I can post the programs used..or I could write out a tutorial. When some even better software comes out, I can see this becoming a pretty common thing. Imagine a "gallery" full of 3D fossil scans! Whale Vertebra 4½" Tall Miocene Hawthorn Fm. Alachua County, FL Here's an additional two-part scan done using this method and a DSLR camera with more photographs: Titanis walleri Phalanx Pleistocene Gilchrist County, FL Beginner Tutorial The Programs & Configuration First, you need Visual SFM. (This is the program that turns the photos into a 3D point cloud) Next, you need CMVS for Windows or if you're not on Windows, go here. (This is just a few files that we put into Visual SFM that helps create our texture that gets applied to the 3D model) The last thing you'll need is Meshlab. (This is a very powerful 3D program that does all kinds of stuff. We'll be using it to turn our 3D point cloud into an actual model and apply our material to it...among a couple other things) Download Visual SFM & CMVS then extract them. Navigate to the correct folder for your computer and copy the contents of the CMVS folder. I'm on Windows 7 64 bit, so I went to the first folder I extracted, "CMVS-PMVS-master" > CMVS-PMVS-master > binariesWin-Linux > Win64-VS2010 and copied everything in there (minus the Readme.txt). Paste those files directly into the Visual SFM folder (the one with all the .dll files where the application to launch the program is) that you just extracted. Obviously, this is a one time thing. You get those files in the right place and every time you open Visual FSM to make a 3D model, it'll have CMVS right where it needs to be. Photographing When I took my photos, I placed the vert on a piece of newspaper with a lot of different colors, lines, images, etc. It's important that the software has common places of reference between different images so it can map out he point cloud accurately. Here's my vert set up ready to be photographed: Thinking about it now, it probably would have been smarter to elevate the vert slightly above the newspaper on a little block or something. I had a little trouble cropping the bright newspaper away from the vert. I took photos starting at a low angle spaced out as I slowly rotated around the fossil. I'd take a pic, move a tiny bit, take another, move a tiny bit, etc. Here's what four of my photos in sequence look like: I went in a full circle until I was sure that I had rotated around the fossil completely and even overlapped a bit, taking photos of the same angle I started with (better to have too many than too few). Then I angled the camera (well, phone in this case) at about a 45 degree angle and rotated around the fossil completely again. Those photos look like this: As you can tell, this are not great photos. I think that the model would have turned out much better looking if I took better photos in better lighting. After I completed that pass, I took one photo of the very top of the vert, facing downward. I made sure to always get a fair amount of the newspaper for tracking purposes. Then I used a great free program called Photoscape and it's batch editor to apply the same filter and crop to all the images at once. Make sure not to crop out your newspaper or whatever you're using to help with tracking. Do not use images with larger dimensions than 3200px! I read in a couple places that this would cause worse tracking and a lot of other problems. If you want to experiment with larger than that, go for it and see what happens..When I tried it, the program ran for a very long time and eventually froze my computer...but my original images were over 5000px each. Visual SFM When your photos are done, open up Visual SFM by going to the folder you extracted and clicking on the application. This is what it looks like: I wrote out some arrows to the things you'll be using in there. #1 is Open Multiple Images. Just click that, navigate to your images and upload them. You'll see the log window to the right doing some stuff....You should see your image thumbnails in the program in just a few moments. When that's done and there's no more activity in the log window, click on #2, Compute Missing Matches. This is the first thing that some computers could have trouble with. This one can take a little while depending on how many images you have and how large they are. When this is done and there's no more activity in the log window, we can get to the cool stuff. Click on #3, Compute 3D Reconstruction. This part is seriously amazing. It takes all of your images and automatically calculates where you were in relation to the object when you took the photo. Then it shows all the places an image was taken and it displays the point cloud in the center. It looks like this: The squares are everywhere I took a photo...You can see that I did a circle around the fossil down low and then a very sloppy "circle" above it. In the center, you'll see your sparse point cloud. If you want to make the little image icons bigger or smaller, it's ctrl + mouse wheel, if you want to change the size of the point cloud points, it's ctrl + alt. Time for the next step. When you clicked on button #3 and got your point cloud, a couple new buttons showed up. This is the one you need: #4 is Run Dense Reconstruction. When you click this, it's going to act like you're saving something. What you're doing is giving the software a directory to dump the files it's going to create. Make a new folder, give the file some name and click save. When you click save, look at the log window (if it's gone, the show/hide button for it is at the top, far left) and look for this: If you see the highlighted part, it means you correctly moved over the files from the CMVS folder you downloaded into the Visual SFM folder. It'll tell you that "this could take quite some time" and it definitely does. For my project (46 images at about 1.2MB each - 1000x1000px) it took 5 - 10 minutes, but before I resized those photos they were over 5000px each and this step ran for nearly an hour before my computer finally froze. Like I mentioned above in the photography part, I read in a few places that your images should be below 3200px on the longest side. You might want to think about closing down other programs that use up a lot of memory while you run this unless your computer has a lot of memory to spare. I closed out my browser and a bunch of other stuff just in case. When the log window says this is done, you should be able to hit Tab on your keyboard and see your dense point cloud....again, you can mess with the size of the points with ctrl + mouse wheel. This is still just a point cloud even though you'll start to see some color and image coming through. There's no need to save anything after this step is done. The program automatically wrote everything you need into the new folder that you created. And that's it for Visual SFM! Meshlab Go ahead and install Meshlab if you haven't already. It can look a little overwhelming at first, but we'll only be doing a couple pretty basic things. This is what Meshlab looks like: Go up to File and click Open Project (or the second button from the left, #1 in the photo above). Remember the folder you had to create when doing the last step (the dense point cloud) in Visual SFM? Navigate to that folder and you'll see a .nvm folder with the name. Open that file. It'll take a few moments to open. When it does, you'll see your point cloud open up into the program (upside down). Now is a good time to try to learn how to navigate around the viewport. The mouse wheel zooms in and out. Holding the left mouse button and moving the mouse rotates around the center. Holding the mouse scroll wheel and moving the mouse will pan the point cloud (or later, the mesh) around. I usually center it in the middle of the center rotation widget. Holding Alt and scrolling the mouse wheel will change the size of your point cloud points....You may need to do that to make them easier to see since we need to delete some soon. All this might take a little getting used to, but if you're patient you'll get the hang of it. Next, click on Show Layer Dialog, the #2 button in the image above. You'll see the little window on the right pop up. If you're at all familiar with photo editing, this layer window should be pretty familiar to you. Now we need to get our cameras showing up. Go to Render (#3) > Show Camera (#4). From there, go over to drop down arrow next to Show Camera on your side window below your layers (#5) and click it. Check on the Scale Factor here and make sure it's set to something like 0.04 or smaller depending on what you want. When I first did this, the camera scale factor was very high when I first clicked on Show Camera and it made it so I couldn't see my point cloud anymore. Time for bringing in our dense point cloud. First, click the little eye next to your layer in the side bar (#6) and you'll see your point cloud disappear. Next, go to File > Import Mesh (#7) and navigate to the same folder you created in Visual SFM where your .nvm file was. You'll see in the same folder a .ply file with the same name. Click that and import it. Reposition the mesh in the center and zoom in. Under Show Camera on the side bar, you may want to uncheck Show Raster Cameras so they don't get in your way for this next step. We're going to be selecting and deleting the stuff that we don't want in our finished model. Position your model carefully and click the Select Vertexes (#8) button. You can then click with the mouse and drag a rectangular selection around the stuff you don't want (#9). Be careful NOT to delete any of the actual model, only the surrounding stuff that was used for tracking (the newspaper in my case) and any random artifacts that might be hovering above or around the model. This isn't difficult, but it can be a little time consuming. This is why I recommended above that you elevate your fossil on a little block or something. Then you could just change to a side view and delete all the newspaper at once, cutting the block in half. When you drag the box around the stuff you don't want, that stuff will turn red meaning it's selected (see #9). When you have the right stuff selected, click #10, which is a Delete Vertices button. The area selected is gone now. Repeat 8, 9 and 10 changing angles carefully to get rid of everything that you need gone. Sometimes the wrong layer gets automatically selected (the invisible one) and when you hit the delete button, it won't do anything. Just click the layer ending in .0.ply if the top one gets selected and keep going. Don't hit the delete button if even a tiny piece of the model is selected...There's no undo button that I've seen, so if you make that mistake, you may have to go back to step 7 and import the mesh again. Here's another angle I used: Remember that you can hold Alt and scroll the mouse wheel to make the points bigger and smaller. If they're too small, you'll have trouble seeing what to delete and what not to. Next, go to Filters > Point Set > Surface Reconstruction: Poisson (#11) here: Then change the settings in the box that pops up to 12, 7, 1, 1 (or experiment a little, but that's what I used) like this: When that's done, hit apply and let it run. What comes out is a 3D model of your fossil! It's just missing the texture right now, but it's still very cool looking. Click the little eye on the layer that ends with .0.ply to hide it. It'll look something like this: Next, we need to go to go to Filters > Selection > Select Non Manifold Edges (#12), making sure the right layer is selected like so: A box will pop up. Just hit apply, then click the Delete Vertices (#13) button. This is just a preventative measure, you shouldn't notice much happening when you click delete. We're getting close! Just one last step and you'll have a fully textured 3D model. Go to Filters > Texture > Parameterization + texturing from registered rasters (#14). A box will pop up. I doubled the size of the texture and left everything else default. The default is 1024, I changed that to 2048. Go ahead and name your texture whatever you want. This step is taking all those images we took and making a single image file that has all angles on it. Hit apply. And there you go! A fully textured 3D model of a fossil from nothing but images: You can go ahead and export your model now. Click File > Export Mesh, give it a name, select the file type drop down here: I made sure to save in a couple different file formats. I saved in .obj and .dae. When you go to upload the 3D model somewhere, all you have to do is upload one of these files and then find your texture image that you created on step (#14) to apply to it. Keep in mind that this technique is not limited to small objects. You can map out environments in 3D too. Archaeologists use this technique (usually with high tech equipment) to take 3D models of archaeological dig sites. This technique can also be used for very detailed topographic mapping if you had a way of taking aerial pics. I'd love to see if anybody gives this thing a shot. If you try it and have trouble, let me know...I'm still very much a newbie at all this, but I'll do whatever I can to help figure it out. I'll post more in this thread as I make more 3D fossils. If anybody gives this a shot, have fun! It's definitely a learning experience. -Cris
  12. Has anyone tried to take a 3D photograph of a fossil that you can rotate in all directions when displayed on a website? If so, what software did you used? What do you recommend for me? I want something inexpensive but am willing to put in the effort to make it work the way it should. I have a background in photography and 3D but not VR and this something I want to exploit. I want to take a bunch of photos of a fossil from all angles and stitch them into something the website visitor can manipulate as holding it in his/her hand. The software I see when I do a web search don't list prices but want me to request a quote. Thanks! Bill
  13. I am wanting to get a digital microscope to image chondrichthyan teeth in the 1mm to 20mm size range. I have been using an iPhone 5s with a15x Olloclip for the larger teeth with decent results, but can't pickup fine details on the smaller teeth. Does anyone have recommendations that won't "break the bank "? Thanks, Carson
  14. I had some fun yesterday combining fossil whitening techniques with focus stacking. I hope the result is interesting enough to share. I sure learned a whole lot by going through this process, and it was great fun too! So here is the story. The specimen is a Diademaproetus praecursor from the Foum Zguid region (Morocco) I prepped a couple of years ago. I applied an ammonium chloride coating, after which I shot a series of 22 pictures using a DSLR with 150mm macro lens at f13. The focus point was changed manually over the series of pictures. Because the lens features an internal focus mechnism, the focal length also changed a bit, but this posed no problem for the stacking software. A simple setup was used, with the camera on a tripod, a remote flash and two reflection screens. Post-processing was mainly cropping, some minor retouching (dust!), desaturation and level adjustments. The first thing that came to mind when seeing the results, was that I should have cleaned the trilobite better before starting. Every little dust piece is visible. Auwtch. Lesson learned. The pictures: 1. Older picture showing the specimen without coating. No focus stacking, so limited depth of field. The angle of the picture is a little different. 2. Result after whitening, stacking and post-processing 3. Detail 4. Same but before post-processing. Any feedback is appreciated!
  15. I thought I would share a few cell phone photography tricks I have learned. Back when I had an iPhone and HTC One I would just zoom in the camera and then I would put my fossil in the frame and take the photo. Both phones did an admiral job taking decent up close photos. I've recently downgraded to a Moto G with a fixed focal length and found that it wouldn't take nice close up photos. Then I tried holding my loupe up to the camera lens and lo and behold I was taking close up pictures again. The photo below is a 1/2 inch Triarthrus beckii. By the way, if you forget your loupe you can use your phone camera as one. This trick also works with tablet computers as well.
  16. Found this little brachiopod on the shore of Lake Erie, near Buffalo. Measures 21mm long. Mucrospirifer species? Photo was created by focus-stacking 4 images for each side. -Zach
  17. I came across an article today on using a printer scanner to image shark teeth. It worked well for the labial side (relatively flat). However, the lingual side was less than satisfactory. Have any of you used this method of imaging teeth, and do any of you have tips on getting good images for the lingual side? Thanks, Carson
  18. Cheap Usb Microsope Testing

    I think, that many fossil collectors already experienced problem, that some interresting details on fossils are too small for naked eye. Standard microscope can be usefull, but its not very comfortable and if you want even to take some pictures (and you often want), it is very hard to use. Over 1 year ago I have found, that there exists something like USB microscope. Good information is, that they are being sold at eBay for quite a good prices. I have been waiting for over one year and finally decided to buy one. It costs me about 25 USD with free shipping, so I think that nearly anyone can afford to buy it. Yes, that sounds like an advertisement, but now I will continue with interresting things, as it has come today into my hands and I have finally tried it. Here are my results... My microscope is officially offering 50x - 500x magnifying. For now I dont know how to test whether it is 500, or 400, but its not very important for me. What is important - if you are not working with microfossils, dont care to buy 500x or more, if 200x will be cheaper. Zooming and focusing are controlled with only one controller and I have found, that usually, you are only allowed to focus at about 50x and 500x zoom. Everything what is in between is quite hard to use, but if anyone has a good tip, give it please. Using smaller zoom, for example 20x would be usefull, but it is not possible and using 500x is quite problematic for "standard" fossils. In all pictures I will put there, I have used about 50x, or 500x zoom (except the picture of microscope naturally). Microscope with Oxycerites cf. orbis for size comparison (max. diameter is about 11cm) Grid 0.1x0.1 mm at 50x Same grid at 500x 1 cent (EUR) at 50x same coin at 500x Oxynoticeras oxynotum. Diameter of ammonite is 15 mm. This is last suture before phragmocone, diameter in this place should be about 9 mm and whorl width about 4 or 5 mm. Part of dirt on miocene gastropod Turritella fragilis at 500x. I have tried to find that piece of nacre with naked eye, but failed. Hecticoceratid ammonite at 50x. Nice to see, that protoconch is preserved. Ammonite is about 4 mm big. Same ammonite at 500x Something for vertebrate fans - seration on outer side of Carcharodontosaurus tooth at 50x Same serations at 500x Trilobite Changaspis elongata at 50x. Total length is about 8 mm. When taking picture, it has been seen better than now, but it is still very good I think, as presevation is not the best. At 500x, I have found there is a tiny crystal on it. It should be about 0.1 mm tall. Wing of french tertiary insect from Provence. Length of wing is about 6 mm. If anyone has any tips, or want me to try something, let me know. I have not edited pictures to make them looks better. I have only changed format from bmp to jpg, resized them (microscope has camera of 2MP, but its more than it can use) and lowered quality (but this is hard to see on pictures) to be able to upload them there.
  19. Ferns & Fossil Coral

    Parry's Lip Fern (Cheilanthes parryi) growing beside fossilized coral in Clark County, NV. This was one of my favorite photo-ops and one of the few cases where I had a specific subject in mind before actually finding it. I had seen lots of ferns and plenty of fossils at this spot, but I really wanted to show the juxtaposition of their patterns together—one living, the other as ancient remains. After a few visits, I finally found what I was looking for! -Zach
  20. Digital Imager For Microscopes

    So I have been playing around with taking pictures through my microscopes over the last year or so and so far I have not bee terribly impressed by the quality of the images. I purchased a Celestron 2MP digital imager (http://www.amazon.com/Celestron-Digital-Microscope-Imager-44421/dp/B003DVP7CE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1385480943&sr=8-1&keywords=digital+imager) which was quite cheap ($35) last year and the picture quality is pretty poor, which is about what I expect for 2MP. I have a DSLR camera and a mount that I have used, but I have an older DSLR without live view which makes focusing and otherwise seeing whats going on very difficult. I like being able to hook the microscope imager up to my laptop and see exactly what I am doing as I take pictures and video, or just use it as a more comfortable way to view whats going on under the scope. I want something higher quality, but the price for digital imagers over the 2MP range jumps up substantially and I want to know if anyone has used them and can speak to the quality. The one I am specifically looking at is a 5MP unit from Amscope (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005N9ZJOU/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_S_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&colid=2LCNHN559KS87&coliid=I25GSNC3PICTTK). I just want to make sure I am not having quality issues from something else, as I look at the sample pictures from the Celestron adverts and they look a lot sharper than the ones I have taken (which might just be typically over optimistic advertising). I have also noticed when using my DSLR setup that the depth of field is incredibly shallow so only a small slice of the fossil is in focus. Is there anything that can be done about this other than using stacking software? I have included some photos from my Celestron unit to give an idea of the quality I am currently dealing with.
  21. When I recently got an iPhone 5, I thought that it would be great for snapshot pics. I had no idea how great a camera it has, especially when used in conjunction with the many terrific photography apps designed for it. Now I use it for all my fossil pics. Bye bye Nikon!
  22. A Hybrid Post

    I'm posting in the "General" section. This post contains several vaguely related topics. I hope that this placement will give it the most exposure to folks that may be interested and/or informed by the content. Covered are: Praise, Prep, Photography and Proposal. Praise. Forum member, xonenine recently promoted a poetry contest. I was the lucky, fortunate "winner." He awarded a trove of trilobites that he had collected. Eldredgeops rana, Penn Dixie Quarry, Hamburg, NY, Mid-Devonion, Windom Shale. Two are pictured below. His effort added a fun element to the Forum and it was a pleasant diversion to participate. To my mind the best part was the interaction with other contestants. This Forum has knowledgeable members, but also there are participants who feature a great sense of humor. Without going on and on - this is a wonderful forum with a host of divers attributes to recommend it. Prep. The photo reveals the onset of prep efforts on the right hand specimen. The cranidium had just begun to be cleared. For scale the left hand critter is about 18mm at its widest point. Prep is now mostly finished on the right piece. The method/tools employed were: B&L Zoomscope, pin vise with carbide point, water, soft tooth brush, art gum eraser. Photography. The image above as taken with a Nikon D600, 50mm Nikkor 1.8 lens with a Cokin A103 magnifying lens attached. The initial image file was 9.18MB. This was cropped to 3.49MB and processed via Photoshop Elements 11. The brightness/contrast and color values were adjusted. Finally the image was re-sized to about 1MB for posting here. The point of all this was to obtain a macro image with excellent clarity. The large files produced by the D600 allow for considerable cropping (and therefore zooming in) with very acceptable sharpness. Of course large image files are more important if the image is to be printed as opposed to screen displayed. Photo info: Nikon D600 with 50mm 1.8 lens, Cokin A103; F-stop f/5.6; Exposure 1/125; ISO 100. Proposal. I would really like for posters to include the details of their photographic efforts at the end of their posts, that is, like the "Photo info" data above. I often ask a poster for additional information about their photos and most graciously provide it. I think that sharing information about equipment and technique will improve everyone's photo product. Thanks for sticking with this long, rambling post. Best, Snolly
  23. Hi Does anyone have any practical experience of how to whitening fossils with ammonium chloride. The technique I wish to lear more about is the one where the fossilis is covered with chloride smoke. This coating should eliminates reflections, translucency and color variations, and easily removed by simply blowing on it.