Brake photographed ancient Egyptian sites and artefacts for Life magazine to run as a story over six issues. The project took 18 months. Such a length of time indicates the amount of money Life was prepared to spend to ensure work of the highest standard.
Brake used a studio-type 4 x 5 inch camera. The technical quality of the photographs this produced was so high that he was able to use them in his later film, Ancient Egypt: The sun and the river. More than two-thirds of the shots in the movie were simply pans and zooms into his original still photographs.