Playing with Printers

I’ve been doing a lot of printing these past few weeks, which is wonderful. I build a lot of code and to finally have something physical to hold and display is validating. For Ideas Taking Shape we’ve been building a lot as well, including spending some time at the MoMA this past week to research and build an object in the style of an artist or designer from the 20th century.

The design exhibit at the MoMA is wonderful but it’s also very limited, the Cooper Hewitt is by far the better museum when it comes to designed objects, nonetheless there were a number of very interesting pieces. Instead of choosing an industrially designed object I became fascinated by the work exhibited next door at the architecture section, in particular the model of the Sevilla Parasol.


Parasol in Seville

The organic shapes and airy beauty of it is just captivating to me and I wanted to try to create something like that. So I took to my 3D software of choice (SketchUp) which I had used successfully before in architectural drawings but when it came to creating organic shapes, I was hopeless with.

I was adamant however that I print my object this week so I printed it out and created my first 3D printed object using the MakerBot. This insistence might partly be due to the fact that I visited the new MakerBot store near NYU two weeks ago to see their new Replicator 2 and then heard about FormLabs and their new product. Exciting times for 3D printing.

What I ended up printing turned out to be a lot less exciting, due to a lack of technical skill with 3D software. I got a few tips from classmates though, which hopefully will lead to a better version of this before the term ends. I’m looking into Rhino for Mac and the Plethora Project, which seems to be an amazing resource for anyone interested in learning about generative art and 3D modeling.

Author: Ali

Developer and dreamer. I like to solve problems and make things come to life.

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