Modeling of L3 Vertebra with Osirix

The next bony pieces of anatomy I’m delving into are vertebrae. I’ve started with L3, or lumbar vertebra # 3, for no particular reason other than I liked its proportions. Here’s the process:

Starting with Osirix, I pull up an anonymized data set available on its website that features the spine nice and prominently.

screen shot of spine in osirix software

After cropping and careful ‘cutting’ of the visual data, I clear out everything surrounding L3 so I get a really good view of it. Screen shots are taken and some .mov’s are made to use as references while modeling.

screen shot of L3 cropped in Osirix

Now I dig into the modeling! The Osirix reference data is invaluable, but I also cross-check with other reliable and accurate visual references during this process, like Grant’s anatomical atlas. After all, even though the Osirix data is from someone’s living tissue, it’s just one person’s data and could have anomalies.

Simple extrusion and pushing pulling of vertices results in a rough blocky structure…

beginning modeling of L3 vertebra

which gets refined more and more…
screen shot of smoother L3 model

screen shot of L3 editing in Maya

until the model looks accurate from all angles, and detailed enough my purposes. Next up I’ll be ordering some small stainless steel models of these from trustworthy Shapeways to use as possible pendants/earrings.

screen shot of polished L3 vertebra

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