Over 3,000 pictures taken
The first step in creating an accurate database for the 35th Ephorate was to visit the sites themselves and document and roughly map everything from wide, panoramic views to micro, architectural details. This usually started with researching the sites online to gather as much data known about them as possible beforehand. This included gathering arial photographs, discussing with the Ephorate about any important information, and reading about any history that was available. With this knowledge in mind, my team and I would pair up and divide the site into sections- often one person would take the pictures while the other would draw a rough map of the site and record the picture number and where it was taken. Through the eight sites we visited, we captured over 3,000 images.
Building a dialogue
One of the most fascinating parts of working in such a small community was how eager and open people were to assisting us with our research. On many occasions a local priest would drive to the site with us to give us firsthand accounts of the churches and their importance. In some instances, neighbors who lived around the site would walk up to us and give us information. There were times where we were invited into peoples homes for an angle they would think would be good to photograph. These interactions showed how important the work we were doing was to the people and gave us a rich background to what was usually just rubble that was invaluable moving forward.