Monday, January 18, 2016

Forensic Sculpture - Day 1

End of Day 1
So I enrolled in a Forensic Sculpture Class the week before school started up. It sounded interesting and I thought it would be a great learning opportunity. It also would help get me into the school routine before the spring semester starts up again.

The instructor is name Joe Mullins. He seemed up beat but serious about the class. He led us through each part of this process.

First, we were given a presentation by a forensic anthropologist. On the table were 15, 3-D printed skulls.  When looking at the table of 3-D printed skulls, I was struck with how similar they all looked. There were minor superficial differences but overall they all looked similar.

So we each choose a skull at almost random,

Skull #5
Skull #5 (Orange County, CA, NamUs #12250, case 14-00097-w1)
Estimated Age: 30-50
Race/Ancestry: White
Sex/Gender: Female
Case Description:
- Skeletonized body found in January 2014 in Caspers Wilderness Park (rural southeast area of Orange County, CA)
- She has shoulder length wavy Dark Brown Hair with light colored Highlights
- Size small Windbreaker jacket with "Coach Williams" Embroidered on the front and also a ball (e.g, volleyball). Athletic yoga style spandex pants. Pinkish short sleeved tank top t-shirt. A bright green Hair scrunchie band.
- There is a healed fracture to the nose with obvious angulation to the right.
- Any missing Anterior Teeth would have been present during life.

The first step was to do a rough block in of the facial muscles. Even with the decreased resolution of the 3-D print, when you ran your fingers across the skull you could feel where the muscles attached to the face, Just adding the facial muscles and you could immediately see the differences between the skulls. It took very little to reveal the individuality. It was remarkable to see it happen.

Adding the facial muscles to the skull
The last thing we did on day one was to add the glass marbles as the eyes.

The sculpture now looks like something out of a horror movie.

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