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Is there a need for digital heritage? Well! I suppose it is. There is no clue when and where things go missing and how. Here in this article one such monument which is preserved digitally by Axesmap using a technique called photogrammetry. The name of the monument is “Kuvempu Samadhi”. Well! I hope whoever reading this might be thinking whether a monument is a right word to use or not. Yes we call it monument, all Indians do. Here it is why! Kuppali Venkatappa Puttappa was popularly known as Kuvempu and was an Indian novelist, poet, playwright, and critic. He is the greatest Kannada poet of 20th century. He was the first Kannada writer who was awarded with a Jnanpeeta award.

Kuvempu studied at Mysore University in the 1920s, taught there for nearly three decades and served as its vice-chancellor from 1956 to 1960.  For his contributions to Kannada Literature, the Government of Karnataka decorated him with the honorific Rashtrakavi (“National Poet”) in 1958 and Karnataka Ratna (“The Gem of Karnataka”) in 1992. He was conferred the Padma Vibhushan by the Government of India in 1988. He penned the Karnataka State Anthem Jaya Bharata Jananiya Tanujate. Maybe this is enough to know why we call it as a monument.

Kavi Samadhi – Kavishaila

Kavishaila is a rock monument made of megalithic rocks and dedicated to Kuvempu. It is on the top of a small hill in Kuppali. Arranged in a circular fashion, the rocks have been placed to resemble the Stonehenge in England. At the center of this rock monument is the place where Kuvempu was laid to rest after his death and a memorial has been constructed at that location. Near this monument, is a small rock where Kuvempu used to sit and discuss about literature and other topics with his other litterateur friends. A rock containing the etched signatures of Kuvempu, B. M. Srikantaiah and T S Venkannaiah is present near the monument. Poornachandra Tejaswi later engraved his signature on the same rock. The scenery around this place is breathtaking. Granite slabs containing engraved poems and quotes of Kuvempu have been placed near the monument.

Sunset viewed from Kavishaila
Sunset viewed from Kavishaila

3D Model of Kavi Samadhi and Engraved signature

The first step in photogrammetry is image acquisition or simply photography. Here is where we take picture using Drones for aerial pictures and a digital camera. For this model, around 50 pictures are captured in different angles and positions. We also included a video shot at 4k resolution for processing. Images are first processed for color corrections and then proceeded into photogrammetry tool. Control points and manual tie points provides the tool a proper guidance to process. Only ground based camera is used in this project.

Generated Point Cloud
Generated Point Cloud

The 3D mesh model is obtained which contains tetrahedral mesh and it is further retopolized to get a refined mesh. Next the textures are applied to the model.

3D Model of kavisamadhi at kavishaila
3D Model of Kavisamadhi at Kavishaila
3D Model of Rock with Handwriting of Kuvempu
3D Model of Rock with Handwriting of Kuvempu

Now digitized 3D models of Kavisamadhi and Handwriting of the Kavi himself are available. To access 3D Model files, please click here or write to hello@axesmap.com.

If you are aware of any cultural and heritage sites which you feel need to be digitized, call us to chat over a cup of chai and snacks!