What the Trainees Said

“I loved it. I found this technique very interesting and useful in many areas of object conservation.” —Trainee from Queens University

“Very informative, very knowledgeable teachers, fantastic new technology with amazing potential.” —Trainee from Harvard Straus Center

“Extremely worthwhile; rich in technical skill and scientific content.” —Trainee from San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

Read other comments by the trainees

Related Article

CHI Director Carla Schroer contributed an article to the Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science and Technology that highlights CHI's work in art conservation using RTI technology. The article is a direct result of the CHI training session at the Harvard Art Museums' Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, which was made possible by the grant described on this page.

Other Related Links

Training session at the Worcester Art Museum

Training at the Worcester Art Museum

Training at CHI

Interested in learning about the training we do at CHI?

See the Training page to learn about our regular imaging workshops where we demonstrate how to generate digital representations of cultural treasures.

Imaging Technology Pathways for Museum Professionals

21st Century Museum Professionals (21MP) Grant Program

Contents:  Impact  Participants  Funding  Photos 

IMLS Training at Harvard University

Training at the Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies of the Harvard Art Museums in May 2011

This project was funded in September 2010; the last training class was delivered in January 2013.

Thanks to a generous grant (IMLS Grant #MP-00-10-0031-10) from the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) 21st Century Museum Professionals grant program, Cultural Heritage Imaging (CHI) was able to deliver 10 training sessions on Reflectance Transformation Imaging (RTI). These sessions introduced both emerging and established museum professionals to state-of-the-art imaging technology through a series of hands-on workshops, reaching over 150 participants. The workshops provided training in how to apply RTI and related new technologies based on digital photography.

The “21MP” grant and project resulted in many advances in CHI's mission that continue to benefit the broader museum community:

Impact of the 21MP Grant and Project: The Details

Cultural Heritage Imaging (CHI) achieved all of the project’s objectives, including its main goal: planning, organizing, and delivering the 10 training classes supported by the 21MP grant. In addition, the grant has led to significant advances in what CHI can offer the RTI community.

Impact on Software

CHI has been able to make strides in the ongoing development of RTI software tools, including updates, feature improvements, and bug fixes. These are freely available, open source software tools that manage the RTI workflow for users. New extended versions of these tools are in progress, thanks to the 21MP grant:

Impact on User Materials

The 21MP grant also funded updates to CHI's software user guides, a new glossary, instructional videos, and new Spanish translations of the guides.

See also the Downloads page to access the software and the guides.

New: User Support for the RTI Community

The 21MP grant also helped support the launch of an online community discussion forum. The CHI team introduced the forum in summer 2012 as a free service (membership is to prevent spam), where members can seek help from each other and get guidance from CHI and other experts. Membership has grown, and shared knowledge about RTI and related topics is accumulating in the forum.

Dissemination at Events

The 21MP grant led to RTI research and presentations to museum and library audiences at a number of conferences (see Events). Included in these delivered papers, talks, and demos were many references to the grant and training sessions.

Training Locations and Participants

The two-and-a-half year project was supported by collaborators from industry, higher education, computer science, and the museum community. Of the 10 training sessions, 6 were hosted at school graduate programs in fine art conservation, and 4 were hosted at regional US museums.

Six ANAGPIC School Programs: Photos on Flickr

The 6 hosting schools are members of ANAGPIC, the Association of North American Graduate Programs in the Conservation of Cultural Property. The sessions were attended by graduate students and faculty from the programs, and in some cases, invited museum professional guests. Participation was determined by each individual academic program and host.

Four Regional Training Host Museums: Photos on Flickr

The training sessions hosted by the 4 museums were attended by museum professionals from all over the United States, following an application process.

Other Cultural Institutions Who Sent Participants

Funding for This Project

CHI received $255,200 from the IMLS and developed the project with additional grants and donations from project partners.

Photographs of RTI Training Sponsored by the 21st Century Museum Professionals Grant Program

Watch this slideshow of the RTI training classes at the four regional host museums.

Click on any individual photograph to see its caption. If your browser does not display these images, you can view them on Flickr.

Watch this slideshow of the RTI training classes at the six ANAGPIC schools.

Click on any individual photograph to see its caption. If your browser does not display these images, you can view them on Flickr.