Meet the Masters: Terrie Simmons-Ehrhardt

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About Me

My name is Terrie Simmons-Ehrhardt and I am a biological anthropologist living in the U.S., specializing in 3D human osteology for forensic anthropology and biomedical visualization. I started 3D modeling computed tomography (CT) scans while working as an ORISE Visiting Scientist at the FBI Laboratory from 2007-2011, contributing to a computerized facial approximation software package. Since then, I have continued working with CT scans to develop virtual osteology resources for research and education. I have also learned to work with micro-CT scans, 3D scanning, 3D printing, and most recently photogrammetry, applying these skills to forensic casework, education, bioarchaeology and cultural heritage, biomedical visualization, and scientific communication. I have also contributed tutorials and models to several web platforms demonstrating virtual osteology tools.

My CT Models by Terrie on Sketchfab

How I Started Using Sketchfab

I have been a long-time user of Sketchfab (as a viewer and downloader) and an indirect contributor via collaborator profiles, such as the Virtual Curation Laboratory, generating both human and animal osteology models, including a mastodon mandible!

I started contributing my own content in spring 2020. I was teaching at the time and had to quickly transition to virtually teaching skeletal analysis methods in Forensic Anthropology. By applying many of my 3D skills, scanning bones and casts with the NextEngine laser scanner, generating CT models with 3D Slicer, I was able to upload my own models in addition to “collecting” existing models to build interactive study guides, comparative collections and quizzes using Sketchfab’s tools to embed models directly into my course’s Learning Management System.


My Current Work on Sketchfab

I am no longer teaching but working independently developing virtual osteology resources on Sketchfab using publicly available CT data and 3D models, creating scenes that I think would be useful for teaching and learning human osteology, as well as sharing interesting skeletal variation. Sketchfab allows me to generate and share accessible, immersive, and interactive tools for sharing human skeletal variation and comparative scenes beyond what is available in a textbook or as commercially available casts. I continue to collaborate with the Virtual Curation Laboratory and also provide 3D modeling services for clients, many of whom have found me on Sketchfab. I participate in scientific conferences and publish articles discussing 3D human osteology and demonstrating the utility of Sketchfab for building interactive tools and supporting database development. I’m always discovering more tools in the Sketchfab viewer to enhance the display of bones and volumetric CT data and developing more 3D skills (especially in Blender) such as rigging and animation, artistic tools for enhancing osteology models, and dabbling with the Sketchfab API (hand bones app, rib app) and even molecular rendering.

I am also a huge fan of mobile photogrammetry apps, scanning everything from bones to toys to food, so my Sketchfab profile has more than just bones. It’s a fun outlet, but it helps me to develop my 3D skills and to stay up-to-date with current 3D technology that can ultimately be applied to imaging within anthropology such as cultural heritage and virtual osteology in archaeological or museum settings and for unidentified remains in forensic casework.

For more information about me and my work or to collaborate, please visit my website. Also check my YouTube channel for tutorials and 3D projects.


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About the author

Terrie Simmons-Ehrhardt

3D human osteology for forensic/bioanthropology, biomedical visualization, and cultural heritage.

1 Comment

  • Yair says:

    Amazing journey, Terrie . Glad to have you as an active contributor on Sketchfab. Your pieces are really cool.

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