Free Write for Presentation 4/24/17

When I think about tea I think about England and tea time. I think about a time where people come together and sit around a table who just talk to each other and enjoy themselves. I also think about a slow pace of life because you can’t drink tea fast because it is so hot, so you have to take your time when you are drinking it.

 

Cultural Appropriation: This is the idea that something is appropriate  for one culture, like it is the norm for what goes on. For example, in one culture showing a lot of skin might be acceptable, but it another culture can be very offensive and unacceptable.

Civil War Belt Buckle Analysis Draft

Civil War Belt Buckle

Can an object define a moment in time? Does the object make the man or does man make the object? To what extent can we analyze and item that we have little or no information on? To what extent can we look at an object to determine its symbolic elements of the time period?

 

Interpreting a Belt Buckle

When asking someone, “What is a belt buckle?” you are bound to get a variety of different answers with different comparisons and interpretations. Depending on who you talk to, a belt buckle could symbolize many different things. To a cowboy, it could symbolize the rodeo. To a soldier, it could symbolize honor and pride for the side they are fighting on. To movie fanatics, it could symbolize Clint Eastwood or John Wayne. To the more practical person, it could just be a mere device that helps hold up pants. However, all of these symbolic aspects did not appear out of nowhere; instead, they came from a long evolution of what the belt buckle means and what is it used for. Belt buckles have been around for thousands of years and have had a number of different usages that have varied due to the time period, style, and practical needs.

What is the Phoenix Project?

Prior to the construction of the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) rail lines in Atlanta, Georgia, an excavation took place to unearth and preserve many artifacts that were located where the tracks were to be built. The study of the objects found is called the “Phoenix Project.” If this excavation did not take place, many of these artifacts would have been destroyed or lost; however, due to this excavation, many artifacts were unearthed that dated back to be more than a century old. Among all of these artifacts found, the Civil War Ammo belt buckle was one that was unearthed in this excavation.

Civil War Belt Buckle

This belt buckle dates between the years that the Civil War took place (1861-1865); however, it is difficult–if not impossible–to determine the actual date of this specific object’s creation and usage. Due to the appearance of the object, however, it can be directly linked to the Civil War because the key signifier located on this object–the United States bald eagle.

General Description

The buckle itself is round with about a diameter of two and a half inches, no more than a .5 centimeter width, and is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. Although the object is light in weight, compared to modern belt buckles it is heavy with a weight of about 5 oz. From the top down, the circle becomes slightly broken at the bottom possibly due to erosion, and at the top, it is also slightly bent. The objects consists of two sides: the front and the back.

In-Depth Description

For reference points, I will refer to the side of the object with as the eagle the front and the top of the object will be the eagle’s head.

The Front (Side with eagle)

On the front, the color is an “army green,” with tiny dirt brown spots that appear more frequently near the edges of the object. The color perhaps is not

Front of Belt Buckle

the original color due to the lack of preservation because it was underground years prior to excavation. Near the center of the object is a spot of built-up rust with a length of about 1 cm. This area pops out of the object for about two millimeters. It is made out of a tough metal that shows signs of aging and rust, although the metal is still strong. The outer edge of the object slightly pops out for about 1 millimeter.

 

Going from the top down, the object displays a bald eagle on the front with the eagle looking to the side so only one eye is visible. Above the head there is a small bump that; however, it stops before reaching the head. The head consists of two main parts: the eye and the beak. As the eagle is looking to the side, its beak consists of about half the size of its head. The head is fairly smooth with not as much texture compared to the rest of the object. Going down, the neck of the eagle is about 1 centimeter long and the texture of the hair on the eagle’s neck is very fine, but as the neck reaches the body, the texture becomes more spread out. The body of the eagle slightly leans to its left with its left wing is larger than its right. The right wing is about 1 centimeter wide and 2 centimeters tall, whereas the left wing is about 1.5 centimeters wide and 1.5 centimeters tall. Following the body, there are two legs that slightly pop out more compared to the body. The legs are relativity smooth compared to the texture of the rest of the eagle. The eagle’s right foot consists of four toes holding three arrows pointing upwards. The arrows are about 1.5 centimeters long and the bottom arrow is faded more than the top arrow. The left foot is holding a tree branch. The branch is much more faded compared to the arrows. Between the legs is the area of built-up rust.

Around the eagle consists of the army green color. The object shows signs of wear due to many broken marks on the object. Also, the bottom of the front is broken off with about 2 centimeters long broken off; however, it only goes inward for about 1.5 millimeters. Compared to the back of the object, the front is much more preserved, which shows that there might have been some chemical involved in the preservation process that treated the front but not the back.

The Back

Back of the Civil War belt buckle

The back of the object does not consist of as much detail as the front of the object because it was most likely the part that attached to the belt. The color of the back consists of many different shades of grey and also some rust. It has a very rough surface texture that is similar to the texture of a limestone rock. There are two parallel spots of rust on the object that show where the the buckle would attach to the belt. There are multiple signs of chipping that show that the back of the object was not treated with a preservative compared to the front which is much more in-tact. Also, there are many “crater-like” markings on the back, which contribute to the rough texture.

History of Belt Buckles

To further understand this belt buckle, we must look back at the history of belt buckles. Belt buckles have been around for over a century and have had a variety of different uses. From practical uses to stylistic, belt buckles have served a variety of different purposes over the years.

The Romans were the first to use belt buckles in the second and third centuries. These belt buckles were D and square shaped and were pounded out of wrought iron by a blacksmith. Moreover, they were used for functional use, rather than for fashion–like carrying weapons and tying their tunics. Although the belt buckles served many practical uses, they were very heavy which weighed down Roman soldiers. There were many different designs throughout the evolution of the Roman belt buckle; however, they were all made out of heavy metals that often weighed down the soldiers.

Example of a Roman style belt buckle

 

Although belt buckles dated back this far, for the more practical use–for holding up your pants–suspenders were much more common than belts, and this was due to the heaviness of the belt buckle. As stated, belt buckles were made of wrought iron by Roman blacksmiths, so practically speaking, when used in battle the belt buckles would weigh soldiers down and become burdensome. Then, in the 1800s, a man named Albert Thurston (from England) manufactured the style of suspenders that are still relevant to today (which were know in Britain as “braces”). At the time, men wore high-waist pants so suspenders were much more common due to the current style of the time. Suspenders were worn by the average person for majority of the 1800s because belts were often too heavy and were not popular during this time period. In addition, it wouldn’t be until after World War I when men would favor belts over suspenders.

Moreover, despite common stereotype, many cowboys actually avoided wearing belt buckles due to the fear of the bulls horn being hooked on the buckle; instead, they wore suspenders until the early 1900s. Suspenders did not act as a threat as belts did to the cowboys; however, once the belt buckle started taking the screen and appearing in many movies, many cowboys adopted it as part of their dress.

 

The Civil War

In the United States, belt buckles began to gain momentum around the Civil War era (1861-65) due to the practicality of the belt. From the research of this belt buckle, this belt buckle was worn by Union officers during the Civil War.

 

Both sides in the Civil War wore belt buckles; however, the process to make them was very different. The South was a much less developed area compared to the North. The South consisted mostly of plantations, so majority of their supplies were handmade, and not mass-produced. Since majority of the South’s materials were handmade, the belt buckles on the Confederate side were much less uniform compared to the Union. For collectors, it is often difficult to tell a fake and real belt buckle apart because every belt buckle made on the Confederate side is a little different. Moreover, there are also many different variation of the Confederate Civil War buckle that were used by different regiments in different states. Soldiers either wore belt buckles with the names of the states or a “CS” Confederate buckle.

Various Confederate Belt Buckles

Compared to the South, the North had a much higher population, more factories, more railroads, more iron/steel production, and more wealth, so when it came to supplying uniforms and supplies to Union soldiers, the North excelled over the South. The belt buckle on the right was the most common style belt buckle worn by a Union soldier. This belt buckle was manufactured by the company “S&S Firearms,” and there are many interesting things to note about it. As stated about the South, it is difficult to tell a fake and a real buckle apart; however, this is not the case with the North because since their buckles were made in factories, they were all uniform in size and detail. Another interesting fact about this belt buckle was that since there were so many of them, Confederate soldiers would recover them, turn then upside down, and it would stand for “Southern Nation.”

After research, due to the detail of the belt buckle, it is clear that the eagle belt buckle was worn on the Union side because the South did not have the technology to create a belt buckle with as much detail. As stated, the belt buckle that is featured in this exhibit was worn by a Union officer because the more common soldier would wear the standard  “US” buckle. Moreover, due to the detail of this belt buckle, it is clear from its design that it carried more prestige than the standard “US” buckle.

Although the Civil War was more than one hundred years ago, there are still many belt buckles and Civil War artifacts found at battle fields and other areas where there were Civil War soldiers roaming. This video bellow shows a man unearth a variety of different Civil War pieces from a soldier.

Belt Buckles and Battle

As we have seen, up until the early 1900s belt buckles were primarily used by soldiers. This was because of the resourcefulness that the belt buckles offered. The could carry supplies like swords, guns, ammo, and many more items. It provided an easy access to obtain these supplies compared to reaching in a backpack or carrying it in a jacket. Belts represented soldiers and the things they carried. They symbolized the side that the soldier was fighting on, and symbolized valor and pride.

African American soldiers in the Civil War with belt buckles

Popular Culture

Although belt buckles are very practical and useful for soldiers, perhaps they are better known today for their influence in Hollywood cowboy films. Actors such as John Wayne and Clint Eastwood made the belt buckle a symbol for cowboys and “machismo” that is used today. John Wayne was famous for cowboy roles and symbolized this idea of what it “means” to be a cowboy, and that cowboys wore belt buckles–despite the fact that they did not wear them because of the fear of being hooked on a bull’s horn.

Then, in the 1950s, Hollywood designers began to design the belt buckles more flashy and the clothing became the type of clothing that we all now image cowboys wearing. Although it might have been exaggerated, it is now the style of clothing that we all imagine cowboys

 

Conclusion

We don’t know who wore this belt. We don’t know his age, his motives for fighting in the Civil War, or his rank in the military. We don’t know what why this buckle was in the spot that it was found. Moreover, we don’t know the answers to these questions, and it is possible that we might never know the answers just by looking at this object. However, from analyzing this object, we DO have many answers to questions like, what war was it? What era was it made? And how was it made? Although this belt buckle was made more than a hundred years ago, it is still in great condition and can tell us a lot about the honor and pride that soldiers fighting in the Civil War had.

Through object analysis, the object begins to tell us its life story. Connections begin to emerge as we begin to understand its journey. Although we might not understand the details of this specific belt buckle, we do understand why certain decisions were made in its design.

 

Sources:

http://www.romancoins.info/MilitaryEquipment-cingulum.html

http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/civil-war-overview/northandsouth.html

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/roadshow/fts/louisville_200704F02.html

 

Image Links:

http://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0253/3973/products/rb_27a_large.jpg?v=1392234607

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/181058847493480360/

http://civilwarbuckles.com/images/pix/product/US/2B.jpg

https://img0.etsystatic.com/015/0/7327240/il_fullxfull.410336748_sru7.jpg

http://www.blackpast.org/files/blackpast_images/e_of_the_Nearly_200_000_African_American_Soldiers_Who_Served_in_the_Union_Army_and_Navy_During_the_Civil_War__public_domain_.jpg
 

 

 

 

Free-write: 45 South

Date: 3/31/2017

Location: 45 South

 

Right now I am in downtown Norcross at a coffee shop attempting to do homework. My homework generally goes, (1) pick a class, (2) Read what I am supposed to do that week in class, (3) see how long I can focus on that topic without switching assignments. Usually I can stay concentrated on a reading for about twenty minutes before my mind becomes preoccupied with something else, which leads me to writing this. I was reading something for my composition class, but I got bored of the reading and decided to do something else. This semester just keeps dragging on with boring readings and I always have trouble comprehending the reading. It’s amazing, sometimes I can sit down and read a whole book and when I’m done I couldn’t tell you one thing about that. I think it normally has to do with the topics that the professors choose. I’m not sure if the professors are trying to torture me with these readings, but if they are, they are excelling with it.

I always picture a giant pep-rally with all the professors prior to the semester. The dean of the school walks out to fireworks and all the professors sitting in the stands. The deans says to the teachers, “What are we going to do this semester?” Then the professors yell, “Make ‘em cry!!!” Another good metaphor of where I am right now is in the movie “Life of Pi” when he is on the boat and a giant storm comes and Pi yells, “I surrender!” to the sky. I’m at the point of my college life when I want to just stop and take a break for a while.

Anyways, like I said I am at a coffee shop I downtown Norcross. There are a variety of types of people here. I have the teenagers next to me talking about school and there life. I’ll be honest, I am listening to their conversation as I am typing this because of how funny and simple the things they are saying. Since I changed school a few times in high school, I never got those high school years so it all seems very foreign to me. What’s interesting about high school is that as you get older, it seems to stay the same. It was funny a second ago the owner of the coffee shop was preparing for the night setup and he starting putting candles on the tables and when he came to the teenagers table he said, “I’m not sure if this applies, but here you go,” acting as if they were on a date.

The band is also setting up right now to begin their performance. It seems like every coffee shop band is the same: a couple in very hipster clothes, the guy plays guitar and does the backup singing and the girl does the main singing in a very monotone, calm voice. Maybe the same place that makes the Starbucks customers also makes the coffee shop bands. They are always pretty uniform.

From what else I can see, there are a few older people around just sitting and talking. Something that comes to mind when I think about older people is when I was in one of my classes the other day. We were talking about not using sexist words when writing and the student said that we need to find alternatives when using words like “senior citizen.” I really don’t understand this. How is that word offensive? I really don’t understand this PC culture because language is not always supposed to be taken so literally and seriously. When I was in South America over the summer they gave each other nick names through adjectives, such as, “the fat one,” “the young one,” “the black one.” They just never got offended and they were always joking around. In the US, ESPECIALLY in the school environment we have to be very conscious with not offending anyone. Sometimes I just chose not to talk in my classes because I just don’t want to deal with people taking what I say too literally.

Well, the band started to play and I conform that they do in fact sound like the generic coffee shop band; however, the girl is actually playing guitar and singing. I guess I shouldn’t have stereotyped and figured that the girl couldn’t play guitar. Jesus, I need to be a bit more culturally sensitive!!! I guess I will finish writing now and focus on something else.

What I Learned About “Wants” from Traveling 30 Countries

To begin this post I would like to begin with a quote by Nigel Marsh in which summarizes the negative impact that consumerism has on people: “There are thousands and thousands of people out there leading lives of quiet screaming desperation, where they work long, hard hours at jobs they hate to enable them to buy things they don’t need to impress people they don’t like.”

When I first heard this quote it really struck me because of how true it actually is and how much we can relate it to our own lives. Think about all the “status” materials out there: Lexus, Mercedes, Michael Kors, Prada, Apple, Samsung, and think about the reason people buy these things. From one point of view, a person buys these materials to “treat” themselves with extravagant things; however, another view could see this as a sign for a person wanting to impress others and the possession is merely a tool in order to impress people. However, to what extent are these desires intrinsic qualities that all humans possess and to what extent are they cultural qualities?

 

I would like to attempt to answer this question from my own experiences that I have gained through my travels throughout the world. All in all, I have been to thirty countries around the world, which adds up to a total of about fourteen months abroad. Throughout this time period I did not try to be the “tourist,” but I really tried to immerse myself in each culture and understand how they think and compare it to how I was taught to think growing up. I always tried to have the most open mind when viewing the cultures and never criticize their way of life.

 

So, what does this have to do with this question? Well, throughout each country I noticed similar things that people wanted that were the same across EVERY culture. Among the things, the ones that I found to be the same across every culture were stability, safety, and family. Every culture seemed to value these qualities in their life and these came at the forefront of their life, and I will refer to these as our intrinsic qualities–the qualities we all possess. In addition, each culture valued “beauty,” and embraced it in their own society. However, although all these cultures valued beauty, the thing that separated them was their concept, or idea, of what “beauty” means. Moreover, when I say “beauty” I am referring to possessions that people wanted in the society.

Let me explain this with an example of when I was traveling through Southeast Asia. I traveled in 5 countries and in this region and they all seemed to have the same object that they defined as “beautiful” and was possessed by everyone regardless of their social class–their phones. I was in the country of Myanmar, which is the poorest country in the region, but still families that did not have running water in their houses all possessed smartphones. Their idea of “beauty” lied in this object. This idea of the beauty in phones was seen in the whole region, which shows the cultural relevance of these possessions. Smartphones are not naturally beautiful, but in the eyes of this one culture they were defined as beautiful and everyone wanted one.

This idea of phones was socially constructed because smartphones are not a natural thing. It could be argued that natural things such as gold or flowers are things that people naturally desire, but smartphones differ because they are not natural, so therefore they cannot be intrinsic. This view of deeming smartphones as “beauty” or “necessity” was a socially constructed concept that became the “dominant ideology” of the culture. This ideology was constructed by the corporations, advertising, and media influence that was both intentional and non-intentional. And this ideology established the desire of the people.

To these people, they were not aware of this quality as much as I was because I was the outsider and noticed things that they considered the norm. Now, when I am living my life at home I try to become more aware of my own cultural wants and desires and try to make a more conscious decisions on whether or not I want something because I want it or because someone is telling me I should want it. I try to have a full consciousness on making my decisions when buying things.

My experiences like the one I mentioned above challenged me to to question my own behaviors. When I am buying a non-necessity materials that I desire I always ask myself,

  • “Am I buying this because I want it, or are external forces that are so subconscious making me want to buy it?”
  • “I am buying this item for myself, or I am buying it for other people?”
  • “What or who is creating this desire that makes me want to buy this item?”

 

It is easy to make decisions unconsciously and have desires that you are not aware of. However, I challenge you, the consumer, to ask yourself these questions when buying something. Don’t allow your culture to control your desires. Be an individual and challenges the norms of the society. There is nothing wrong about having desires, but always make sure these desires exist are because you desire them, not because someone is telling you to desire it.

 

My challenge to you is to think about what non-necessity items you desire and think about what is driving you to buy that item. For example, are you buying a guitar because you love playing guitar, or are you buying a new phone because you saw an appealing commercial that made you want to buy it? What motives you for your purchase?

 

Be a smart consumer!!

 

 

Timeline Draft

November 6, 1860

Abraham Lincoln is elected as sixteenth president of the US

1860-1861

The Southern states began to succeed from the Union in this time.

April 12, 1861:

Fort Sumter is attacked by the Confederates, thus the war begins

 

1861-1865: Technology introduced in the Civil War

Many new technology are introduced around this time and are used in the war:

  • Rifles
  • Canon
  • Submarines
  • Hot-air Balloons
  • Telegraph
  • Railroads

Uniforms of the Confederate

The typical uniform of the Confederate soldier was a forage or slouch hat, gray or butternut wool shell jacket, gray, butternut, or blue trousers, and brogans. A haversack was used to carry personal items. Confederate soldiers usually traveled lighter than their Union counterparts; instead of a knapsack, they typically carried their bedding rolled in their blanket and slung across one shoulder.

 

 

 

Uniforms of the Union

The typical uniform of the Union soldier consisted of a blue forage cap with black leather visor (a Hardee hat is shown here), a dark blue sack coat (flannel), blue wool trousers, and leather brogans. He carried a knapsack, which contained half of a two-man tent, a groundsheet, an overcoat, and his personal effects. A rolled blanket was fastened with straps above the knapsack. A haversack carried rations.

 

 

 

 

1862: Belt Buckle Introduced

Belt made out of a pattern buff leather

USN Issue Blackened Buff Belt, Blackened Buff Sword Frog, and Japanned Iron Friction Buckle

 

January 1, 1863

Emancipation Proclamation is issues that “freed” all of the slaves

July 22, 1864 :Battle of Atlanta

General William Sherman successfully takes over the city of Atlanta, which is a major railway transportation hub for the South.

The Battle of Atlanta | Civil War Paintings | Pinterest

April 15, 1865

President Abraham Lincoln dies at 7:22am after being shot the evening before at Fords’ Theater in Washington. The assassin is well known actor and Southern sympathiser John Wilkes Booth who has escaped.

What We Can Learn From the Civil War Technologies

For my timeline, I am researching about the Civil War belt buckle, which was unearthed during the construction of the MARTA rail lines. In this post I will be referring more to the Civil War than the belt buckle itself because during the Civil War, new material (i.e. technology)  highly affected the war. The Civil Wars was fought between the American North and the then Confederate South. Although many people believe that the Civil War was entirely a war about slavery, it actually was filled with many more aspects. For both sides, the soldiers fought for honor and their country; however, the wealthier class was “fighting” for different reasons. However, in accordance with this post that is not important. What I will be discussing in this post is how technology made this war different from the previous wars and how these “materials” separated this war from previous wars.

The article Civil War Technology on the History website discusses the various technologies that were introduced as a result of the war or during the same time of the war. Firstly, the rifle replaced the musket because it had a longer range and a better accuracy. Due to advances in technology, it was also much faster to reload than the musket. Eventually, these rifles would also be able to hold multiple bullets before they needed to be reloaded. This transition from musket to rifle revolutionized the way that soldiers fought because they were able to stand further away from their enemy and no longer have to stand in a line to fire. This minor change completely changed the game of war and the new “material” would later change the way war is fought. This weapon symbolized strength and power, which allowed the soldiers assurance. The look of the rifle looks very “American” because of the rustic wooden look and long metal barrel. Based on its appearance, it can be identified as American compared to a British rifle. Moreover, the look of the rifle can even tell us what war that it was used in.

Another major technological change was the telegraph, which was used during this time. The telegraph was used by the Union for people in far distances to communicate with each other. It allowed them to conduct strategies and monitor battlefield reports. The telegraph revolutionized the way was carried out the same way that a smartphone revolutionized the way we live–for better or worse. The appearance of the telegraph shows a sign that it is handmade using good-quality materials. It can symbolize efficiency and power because of how it was used. Moreover, It looks very prestigious because of its careful design.

 

In my last blog post on weapons, I talk about how certain tools become weapons and may have unintended consequences. These new technologies also had different consequences that can make them categorized as weapons. In relation to material studies, these two materials that I discussed above were designed with a purpose–the rifle being to kill and the telegraph to communicate–and in material studies we can begin to understand how these objects revolutionized not just the Civil War, but how they revolutionized how wars were being fought.

 

Through material studies, we can discover what these new objects meant to the soldiers and their officers. How did the replacement of the musket effect the pride of the soldier? Did the rifle bring more confidence in the soldiers? How does the look of the rifle symbolize the spirit of the war? What differences are there between the Union rifle and the Confederate?

In regards to the telegraph, we can discover a whole different set of ideas. The telegraph was only used by the Union for their benefit, so this material sparked fear in the Confederates. Since the Union won the war, do people look at the telegraph as a positive tool because it was only used by one side? How does the look of the telegraph symbolize American culture and tradition?

Posed Questions

As I discussed, the materials that came out of the Civil War highly effected the way we discuss and view the war. So when looking at other wars (or historical events) what objects do we associate with these wars? What can these objects tell us about the history of the war? How would effect the study of a war if there were no material studies?

Timeline Question

For this project are we supposed to both talk about the objects history as well as the Phenoix Project history? Is it supposed to include both? What are some good databases to find information on the object?

Object Description/3D Model Reflection

Object Decription

I didn’t really understand the purpose when I first started this project because I really thought that no one reads object descriptions when looking on a website. However, what I think the purpose of this assignment was to begin noticing detail and being really descriptive with writing. The assignment forced me to put as much detail into such a small object and made me notice things that I would not have noticed if I was just holding and looking at it. I had to be aware of making the reader understand what part of the object that I was describing. Also, I had to be aware of every little detail of the object so that I could point out things that other people might not notice when looking at it. Overall, the object description made me aware of all the little details of the object and it made me aware that when I am writing other works, I need to be as descriptive as possible and include things that I did not notice before.

 

3D Model

The 3D model was much more difficult than I thought it would be–although I knew that it would be hard. The thing that I don’t like about depending on computers to make something for me is that I have little control of the final product. I can take one hundred pictures of something, but at the end of the day, it is up for the computer to put it together for me.

I took 148 pictures at the same area, so I just decided to use them all when creating my model using Agisoft because I figured that the odds of creating a higher quality model would increase with the more photos. The first attempt of creating the model literally took all class. From the start of class to the end I was importing pictures. Agisoft said that I had a huge number of matches, but when I was able to see the actual photo, I was met with disappointment. After over an hour of waiting, it was a black circle with the eagle on both sides of the belt buckle. I was really annoyed that it didn’t work out because I was so optimistic because it was taking so long. I think that my problem with my first attempt was that the object consisted of two sides, so I had to flip the belt buckle which must have messed up the calibration.

I was happy that I was able to use the 3D scanner on my second attempt because I did not want to go through the same disappointment again. Using the 3D scanner took little effort and produced much better results. I scanned it twice. The first scan was a low quality scan; however, once it was complete I realized that this would be much better compared to Agisoft. The second scan I did took about 15 minutes and produced a very good model of the object. The 3D scanner was much easier and efficient that Agisoft and I was pleased to use it.  When I will do my final model near the end of the semester, I will use the 3D scanner with a higher quality to create the best model possible.

Object Description

General Description

This object is round with about a diameter of two and a half inches, no more than a .5 centimeter width, and is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand. Although the object is light in weight, compared to modern belt buckles it is heavy with a weight of about 5 oz. From the top down, the circle becomes slightly broken at the bottom possibly due to erosion, and at the top, it is also slightly bent. The objects consists of two sides: the front and the back.

In-Depth Description

For reference points, I will refer to the side of the object with as the eagle the front and the top of the object will be the eagle’s head.

The Front (Side with eagle)

On the front, the color is an “army green,” with tiny dirt brown spots that appear more frequently near the edges of the object. The color perhaps is not the original color due to the lack of preservation because it was underground years prior to excavation. Near the center of the object is a spot of built-up rust with a length of about 1 cm. This area pops out of the object for about two millimeters. It is made out of a tough metal that shows signs of aging and rust, although is still strong. The outer edge of the object slightly pops out for about 1 millimeter.

Going from the top down, the object displays a bald eagle on the front with the eagle looking to the side so only one eye is visible. Above the head there is a small bump that; however, it stops before reaching the head. The head consists of two main parts: the eye and the beak. As the eagle is looking to the side, its beak consists of about half the size of its head. The head is fairly smooth with not as much texture compared to the rest of the object. Going down, the neck of the eagle is about 1 centimeter long and the texture of the hair on the eagle’s neck is very fine, but as the neck reaches the body, the texture becomes more spread out. The body of the eagle slightly leans to its left with its left wing is larger than its right. The right wing is about 1 centimeter wide and 2 centimeters tall, whereas the left wing is about 1.5 centimeters wide and 1.5 centimeters tall. Following the body, there are two legs that slightly pop out more compared to the body. The legs are relativity smooth compared to the texture of the rest of the eagle. The eagle’s right foot consists of four toes holding three arrows pointing upwards. The arrows are about 1.5 centimeters long and the bottom arrow is faded more than the top arrow. The left foot is holding a tree branch. The branch is much more faded compared to the arrows. Between the legs is the area of built-up rust.

Around the eagle consists of the army green color. The object shows signs of wear due to many broken marks on the object. Also, the bottom of the front is broken off with about 2 centimeters long broken off; however, it only goes inward for about 1.5 millimeters. Compared to the back of the object, the front is much more preserved, which shows that there might have been some chemical involved in the preservation process that treated the front but not the back.

The Back

The back of the object does not consist of as much detail as the front of the object because it was most likely the part that attached to the belt. The color of the back consists of many different shades of grey and also some rust. It has a very rough surface texture that is similar to the texture of a limestone rock. There are two parallel spots of rust on the object that show where the the buckle would attach to the belt. There are multiple signs of chipping that show that the back of the object was not treated with a preservative compared to the front which is much more in-tact. Also, there are many “crater-like” markings on the back, which contribute to the rough texture.

 

Other Details

Smell

The smell of the object smells similar to that of a rock. There are no significant differences between the smell of a rock and the object.

Sound

When flicked, the object has a strong feel to it and holds a lot of the sound and vibrations within itself.

 

Front of the object
Front of the object at an angle
Side of the object
Back of the object

Midterm Conference Reflection

I went to have my midterm conference on Monday, January 24 at 9:30. In the conference we discussed my past blogs, twitter essays, and the object description. First, I wanted to know if I had improvements on the blog, since I did not get the grade that I wanted on the first blog. I was pleased to know that we can resubmit any assignment for credit because I was not aware of that before the conference. I will definitely make use of that in the next few weeks to resubmit my twitter essays and first blog. Also, I learned that the Friday due date is not 100% percent necessary. I wish I had know this earlier because I was stressing out to turn in the blog on Friday; however, it is good to know that for the future, I do not have to worry about turning in the blog late.

One of the main things that I wanted to know when I went to the conference was if my object description was improved since the time that we went over it in class. We went over my object description draft in class and I did not do the assignment correctly, so I wanted to make sure that she could review it again before I submitted it. I was pleased to know that my draft turned out better than the last one.

Overall, I was happy that I had to do the midterm conference because I learned many things about the class that I was unaware and will make it easier as the semester goes on. Approaching the midterm date, I am happy with this information because I stressed myself out too much with the assignments in the first half of the semester. Moreover, in the next half of the semester, I hope not to stress myself out too much when it is not necessary.