3D Scanning Example: 12′ Statue Outdoors

We were hired to 3d scan a 12′ statue of Lewis, Clark and Sacagawea that was removed from downtown Charlottesville. It was removed due to Sacagawea’s pose. Its new temporary home is in a field at the Lewis & Clark Exploratory Center in Charlottesville. The curator wanted the statue scanned to preserve the statue since its future is uncertain, but to also re-imagine the statue with the three subjects being on a more equal level.


    • Statue is 12′ tall on a hillside.
    • Located outdoors in a field with full sunlight all day.
    • Closest electrical outlet over 100′ away.
    • Center is at the back of a park which closes at sunset (so no nighttime scan option).
    • Surface texture is varied due to decades of soot and patina.


    • Used a hand-held scanner with a larger field of view, which lets us capture more data in a single frame, reducing the amount of time to scan.
    • Used a 10′ x 10′ event tent with legs modified to be 15′ tall and replaced white roof and side panels with black versions. This allowed us to scan during the daytime.
    • Used scanning markers on more challenging areas of statue.
    • Used a 15′ ladder with adjustable feet to level ladder.


    • The final scan was completed in 1.5 days
    • Einscan, the manufacturer of our laser-based hand-held scanner was impressed enough with the project that they did their own video case story on this project. (see their video below).
    • The laser scanner penetrated through some of the soot and patina, showing additional details that had not been seen for decades.