The rock-cut temples and caves at Ellora were first studied by James Wales and his drawings of the site were the models for Daniell's Hindoo Excavations in the Mountain of Ellora near Aurungabad in the Decan (Oriental Scenery), London, 1803, and Edward Moor's detailed on-site drawings of the carvings at Ellora were worked up by Moses Houghton for the plates in Moor's The Hindu Pantheon, London, 1810..
Working in Bombay since 1791, Wales developed a great interest in the rock-cut temples of Western India. Whilst the Elephanta Temple was well known to Europeans, Wales had also explored the lesser known sites of Karli (Ekvera), in the Western Ghats, and had been able to visit Pandoo's cave (Panchalesvara) near Poona, through introductions by his patron, Sir Charles Malet. Wales's intention was to turn his sketches and plans of these temples into a lavish work on the antiquities of India. Wales met the Daniells in 1793, and was to become an important and influential figure in their projects. Sir Charles Malet took Wales's drawings of the cave-temples to England in 1798 and commissioned Thomas Daniell to publish them. Wales's images of the Temple of Ellora were published in the sixth series of Oriental Scenery in 1803.