Left: Column with bud-shaped capital
Right column: Unfinished

Column shafts and capitals were typically formed out of stacked stone drums or half drums. These could be centered atop each course by the use of plumb lines, either aligning the drums using markings at their centers or via vertical grooves along their sides. ...

Decorative elements on shafts and capitals could be cut directly from the stacked blocks once in place. That the two elements were not usually designed and cut from separate blocks before construction is demonstrated...

Once a column was carved... it could then be dressed and smoothed. The remains of colorful paint on columns at Karnak ... show that the final decoration of some columns included extensive painting.
- Digital Karnak: Construction Methods and Building Materials

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