While much can still be said for the older media of the arts, like canvas and film, they lack the reproducibility and sharing potential of digital media. If you want to preserve or share a digital image, you just need to make copies, but artwork is not so easily copied without losing something from the original. The traditional process of digitizing a painting though is quite complicated as a photographer has to find the ideal placement and lighting, but researchers at the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics have a new technique that could really speed things up.
Instead of relying on a single photo to capture a painting, this new method fuses together a great many images, and employs statistical methods to keep artifacts present in the images from being in the final product. These methods also remove the need for special lighting on the painting as glare and reflection noise are two of the issues this will remove. Professional cameras are not even needed for taking the bursts of images.
Of course these post-production methods are quite intense, but they are fully automated as well, so the overall cost for digitizing paintings can still be decreased. Next the researchers hope to improve this technique more so it can operate well on 3D works of art.