Monday, 5 March 2012

Past the First Post

So here it is: my first post on my first blog! A blog about the past--but also about the present, and by the time of this blog's conclusion 15 months from now, something of the future.

I've just begun a COFUND Research Fellowship with the Dahlem Research School, in affiliation with Excellence Cluster TOPOI and the Institut für Altorientalistik at Freie Universität Berlin. From now until May 2013 I will be undertaking a research project on some of the world's earliest writing and other imagery from ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. Exciting stuff - if you're in to this sort of thing! 

My project is entitled: ‘A Comparative Study of Scribal and Artistic Spaces in Early Egypt and the Ancient Near East: Integrating micro- and macro-scale analyses’. I'll explain more about this in future posts -- about 3 times per week. In addition to a spot of field work in Egypt, I'll be poking around museum basements (love museum archaeology!) as I collect my data, including photographs of hieroglyph-inscribed funerary stelae, seal impressions, cuneiform tablets, decorated vessels, etc. 

A key topic on this blog will be the open access digital imaging technology, Reflectance Transformation Imaging(RTI). This is a method of photography which enables the virtual re-lighting of material surfaces and will be a tremendous aid as I research early scribal and artistic use of materials, tools and techniques. I've been using RTI for a while, but the RTI community is growing quickly and new developments in hardware and software are continually emerging. So I will also be posting my general thoughts and views on RTI news and developments.

Well, I've managed to polish off an Eidauer Schwarzbier in the writing - aroma of caramel and roasted malt, not too sweet. A fine blogging companion.


  1. What an exciting project! It's great that you plan to blog about your progress so we can follow along too.

    Looking forward to reading more.

  2. Fantastic! I look forward to reading about your project as it unfolds in the present!

  3. Congratulations Kathryn! Sounds absolutely fascinating. I will be keeping my eye on your blog with much interest.

  4. Thanks for your kind words and feedback! Still gathering momentum here as I figure out how to 'drive' a blog. I am also learning what works best for communicating my project and what readers are interested in. Suggestions, questions, comments, etc. most welcome! Catch me twitter as well: @kathrynpiquette

  5. Kathryn! Kind of a random drop in from an old friend here. I was just thinking about you and wondering where you ended up. This is some fascinating stuff! I had no idea you were into archeology. I still keep in touch with daviedandroo from time to time. Anyway, just thought I'd say "hi." :) (@arxpoetica is my twitter handle)

  6. Blast from the past! Great to hear from you, Robert! Archaeology - yes. Loving it! Digital imaging is central to my work of late. Lots of exciting things going on with RTI but, alas, I have been terrible with taking time to post about it here :-( Directing most of my writing time/energy into publication. Shall surf over to your twitter profile now...