MSc Heritage Visualisation School of Simulation & Visualisation

Nicola Wündsch (she/her)

During this postgraduate degree, I got to know the field of digital heritage from many different angles: from the recording of architecture and objects with laser scanners to photogrammetric recordings and models to digital modelling and processing textures to the conception of games to convey heritage and history to the projection of digital models into the physical environment via Augmented Reality and so much more.

I theoretically approached historic architecture and space in my BA in Visual History at the Humboldt University of Berlin. Afterwards, I received applied training in building preservation in the two-year MSc Historic Building Recording and Conservation at the Technical University Berlin. The MSc Heritage Visualisation has given me many more tools and opened doors to play creatively with visualisations and storytelling in the field of cultural heritage.

marlin’s wynd : 3D Tour beneath Edinburgh’s Tron Kirk
ee sweet : A Digital Visual Glossary of Architecture in English and Scots
back entrance : Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
govan hogbacks : Photogrammetry, Retopology, Textures
classical order : A Computer Game for Heritage Education
the factory : An Interactive Diorama

marlin’s wynd : 3D Tour beneath Edinburgh’s Tron Kirk

This is a project I did for the Scottish Historic Buildings Trust. I photographed Marlin’s Wynd and transformed it into a high-resolution photogrammetric model in 3DF Zephyr. Using Blender, I retopologised this model from one million polygons into a few thousand polygons. Also in Blender, I applied a normal map and the base colour texture to the low-poly model to give it the appearance of a high-poly model. The Tron Kirk’s transparent outline and the excavation floor plan below the kirk give Marlin’s Wynd spatial context. In Sketchfab, I embedded into the 3D model additional textual and pictorial information about the monument and its heritage significance.

Peek below the floor of the iconic Tron Kirk on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile

_And discover the remains of Marlin’s Wynd - thought to be the oldest paved street in Scotland!

ee sweet : A Digital Visual Glossary of Architecture in English and Scots

The mobile app „ee sweet“ demonstrates how closely language has been historically related to the built environment. The language and number of terms used to describe an element or its condition reveal much about what was of greater or lesser importance at a particular time and place.

Architectural terminology represents an area of cultural heritage that directly connects Intangible Cultural Heritage – in this case, language – with Tangible Cultural Heritage – commonly understood as the heritage of the material environment.

Architectural glossaries are produced in large numbers as “architecture spotter’s guides”, both analogue and digital. Yet they are often limited to a few ‘Western’ countries’ languages, and ‘minority languages’ are rarely represented. This app explores how a ‘minority language’, in this case, Scots, can be inserted into the genre of digital glossaries of architecture. However, the app is more than just an instrument of knowledge transfer; it invites the user to interact and add their own terms of architecture.


Broose eemages










Engl. (Scots. Gergon)


Scots (Engl. Gargoyle)


Engl. (Scots Skewputt)


Scots (Engl. Kneeler)


Engl. (Scots Marmouset)


Scots (Engl. Grotesque)

back entrance : Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

This work is a detailed 3D model of the back entrance to the Kelvingrove Museum in Glasgow. It was modelled in 3DS Max using reference sources such as architectural plans, satellite imagery, photographs and additional on-site observations. The rest of the museum building gives context to the detailed model as a block model.


Rendered model

Front view

Side view

Back entrance

Top view


govan hogbacks : Photogrammetry, Retopology, Textures

The term hogback first appeared in the 19th century and seemed to refer to the round shape of the top of the stone. Likely, hogbacks were created as gravestones for the upper classes from the 10th century onward. The stones are found in various locations in the UK.

I tried different data acquisition methods for creating photogrammetric models of the Hogback stones. Many photographs are taken during the photogrammetric recording of objects, which are then compiled into a three-dimensional point cloud. In the best case, each point of an object is recognised in at least three photographs and can thus be determined in its position in a three-dimensional coordinate system. To ensure this, the photographs must overlap considerably. To keep the data size as small as possible, I retopologised the 3D models and reduced their polycount.

The hogback models have been integrated into a VR experience in which visitors to Govan Old Parish Church can interact with the stones and learn about their history.

Hogback Model

Hogback Mesh


VR Experience

Transferred Texture from Mesh

Normal Map from Mesh

classical order : A Computer Game for Heritage Education

The game “Classical Order” is about learning the terminology of architectural orders (Doric, Ionian, Corinthian etc.). Players can uncover the vocabulary cubes, arrange them and stack them on top of each other. The game was developed as part of the ‘Interactive Visualisation’ course, which teaches the basics of code writing and game design.


Change Texture




the factory : An Interactive Diorama

The game starts through an ‘old’ newspaper interface, which reports the working conditions in “the factory”. Clicking on the picture transports the player into the factory environment where the world is black and white, the machines run 24/7 making noises, the clouds of smoke are all-encompassing, and the clock ticking never stops.

This game was created in collaboration with James Webb.


Stack Game

to the beat

of the machine