Crystal Clear was launched by Michael Rolfe at the Museum of Arts and Sciences Regional Stakeholders Forum in November 2019. Its aim is to guide the digitisation of collections cared for by regional museums, galleries, cultural centres and keeping places. It was developed by M&G NSW, following its experience of working with regional partners to build the Collections and Stories prototype website in 2018. It, therefore, has a regional focus and takes into account the particular digitisation scenarios, and challenges, faced by regional museums, galleries and cultural centres, which are often very different to metropolitan-based cultural organisations.
The Collections and Stories project identified that existing digitisation guidelines for the sector are too general in scope, and that much of this information is dispersed across multiple publications and platforms, authored by large cultural organisations. Other gaps identified in existing guidelines was the likely array of digitisation situations faced in the regional context, as well as advice on how to adapt a typical digitisation toolkit to manage these. Crystal Clear has drawn together the many extant information threads about digitisation, supplemented this knowledge with additional research, and compiled this into a single user-friendly document. It covers all aspects of digitisation including, preparation, capturing or making digital images of 2D and 3D objects, and managing and using digital files in the regional context.