This weeks Designer Spotlight focuses on Rachel Goth of Marmalade Park, a graphic designer who turned to 3D printing to transform her photographs of flowers into living, breathing jewelry.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I'm Rachel a graphic designer originally from Liverpool in the UK. I moved to Oxford after university and I've been here ever since. I spent many years creating graphics for the virtual world and began itching to create something 'real'. That's when I started designing jewelry in my spare time.
What's the story behind your designs? What inspires you?
There's really two strands to it. I'm inspired by nature and I take a lot of photographs of flowers. So many that I drive my partner mad actually! All those photos have become the basis of the current collection of hand dyed nature jewelry. I'm also intrigued by humanity and how our caveman minds work. At the moment I'm developing a series of pendants in which people can stash their secrets or exchange messages. Negative space seems to crop up in my work a lot too. I like to play around and see what's the minimal amount of material I can get away with and still tell the story.
What brought you to 3D printing with Shapeways?
Previously I'd been using laser cutting for my jewelry designs. When I came across Shapeways by chance it changed my world. I'd seen 3D printing before but I never thought I'd be able to afford to make any prints. As soon as I found Shapeways I started to learn 3D design. Since then I've also found Shapeways customer service invaluable.
How did you learn how to design in 3D?
Although I went to college for graphic design I've never really gotten along well with the classroom environment. So I set about finding software and tutorials online. After having looked at 3D software some years ago and been put off by the tech speak I fell for Blender with its easier to understand interface.
How do you promote your work?
This is my first 3D print collection so I'm learning as I go. I have a shop in London who will be stocking my work and I've recently revived my Etsy account. I'm also starting to use social networking, like Facebook, although it's not my natural forte.
Who are your favourite designers or artists? Who in the Shapeways community has served as an inspiration to you?
I love the impact of Antony Gormley's work and I have a soft spot for his figures on Crosby beach. In the jewelry world I'm entranced by Peter Chang's fantastic sculptural work, a piece of which I'd love to own one day. Here on Shapeways I like the way ThreeForm is creating new products I've never seen before and making me think. I saw some of Electrobloom's work at the 3D print show in London last year and have followed him ever since. I'm also a fan of HiLobster's amazing creatures and Dotsan's wall mounted heads.
If you weren't limited by current technologies, what would you want to make using 3D printing?
I'd like to make edible art, from giant sculptures to delicate jewelry. Wouldn't a giant edible sculpture be more interesting than a wedding cake?