Building accurate numerical models of the earth for simulation is both challenging and time consuming. The subsurface complexity must be captured in sufficient detail for the results to be of practical use for geophysical analysis. Physical models provide an efficient way to add realistic detail to numerical models. Physical models, for example, are scaled simulations of large-scale geologic systems that provide great insight into understanding the interplay between sedimentation, salt tectonics, and faulting. The integration of geophysical workflows with sandbox models has been the subject of previous research, primarily to create synthetic data to compare with observed field data. However, capturing the detail from the physical model is challenging. A novel workflow is presented that uses pixel intensity values from photographic images of the analogue model to create a pseudo-impedance perturbation, mimicking the acoustic impedance contrasts that are encountered in the earth. This solution enables the detailed sedimentary architecture from the sandbox to be transferred to the digital earth model. Acoustic wave equation forward modeling and reverse time migration imaging have been applied using the generated pseudo-impedance model for a Gulf of Mexico-style salt canopy model. The images produced show clear definition of the salt/sediment interface and capture the sedimentary stratigraphy and faulting observed in the original sandbox model.

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