With the holidays approaching, now’s a better time than ever to design your very own 3D Printed gifts. Never designed anything before? Not to worry. We’re here to help. This is the first of our three-part series on our easy-to-use apps that’ll have you creating in no time. No tricky modeling skills required!
We’ve all gotten dad a mug, bought a tea set for grandma, or perhaps a vase for a friend. But have you actually designed a gift for them? With the Sake Set Creator app you can do just that. Your creation will be 3D Printed in Ceramics, our only food-safe material. Did we mention you won’t even have to get your hands dirty?!
The tool enables you to select a base design, then adjust shape, smoothness, and twist intensity. You can design everything from cups and saucers to tumblers and vases. Then choose from 5 different colored glazes to personalize even further.
As you may already know, we recently lowered the pricing of our Ceramics! As a result, Shapeways Shop Owners got really excited and wanted to share their newly priced models with you. Check out the amazing deals now available on classic ceramic models from espresso cups to vases, candle holders to chopstick holders!
Come in and get 3D scanned at MAD then have a miniature figurine printed at 10cm high in Full Color, Nylon or Stainless Steel, or 5cm high in Bronze, Sterling Silver, Brass or Gold Plated Brass by Shapeways.
This Thursday we are hosting a Meetup at MAD where you can come in on their 'Pay what you wish' night so you can check out the AMAZING exhibition and maybe get yourself scanned like Colby Keller did?
Check out the slideshow of some of the images from the exhibition.
The Out of Hand exhibition will run until June 1st 2014 at Columbus Circle in New York City.
Shapeways Thanks EOS, Occipital, Formlabs, Rhinoceros, LIFT Architects & RUSH Design for their support.
You may have seen recent headlines about the ability to create 3D Printed limbs. But how about doing it yourself? Massachusetts resident Paul McCarthy followed an online tutorial and took it upon himself to 3D Print a hand for his son, Leon, who was born with no fingers. The result? A happy son with newfound dexterity, and a savings of around $30,000.
This weeks Designer Spotlight focuses on Joshua Harker, a sculptor, who has worked with 3D printing in one form or another since the very early 90s.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I’m in Chicago. I’m a sculptor and have worked with 3D printing in one form or another since the very early 90's. I started using it as a fine art medium since 2000. I’m a musician, I like motorcycles, beer, dogs, loud music. I’m the world’s most grateful husband, proudest dad, and I’ll be friends with anyone.
Welcome to the Shapeways Holiday Gift Guide! We've hand selected items that inspired us, in hopes that you find the most perfect, unique gifts possible. Whether you’re shopping for your parents, siblings, or friends, Shapeways has thousands of gifts for you to choose from. Think of us as your personal shopper, trying to make your holiday shopping a little easier this year.
If you have a project you want to 3D print but need some help creating a 3D printable file the Shapeways 'Designers for Hire' are Shapeways community members with a proven record of making other peoples ideas real. Contact Dhemerae Ford to help you 3D print your designs.
Come and join us for an evening in the Shapeways interactive space on the second floor. Take your time to check out the incredible items on display and come play in the interactive space afterwards. We'll be running our army of Formlabs 3D printers and we will be 3D scanning people so you can get your very own 3D print of yourself!
We can't wait to share this incredible exhibit with you. Read all the details and head over to RSVP on meetup.com
Have you ever wondered how to go viral? How to see a traffic spike in the five to six figure range? Well, while it does take a bit of timing and luck, there is a formula to it. Today, Christopher, our resident reddit master and general knower of all things cool breaks down how to design timely products and go viral! Take it away, Chris!
I’m going to start this blog post by making the following statement; virality is often based on the following few criterias:
Cleverness and Wit
Innovation & Originality
… or any combination of the above.
When attempting to create virality, it is important to think about the above aspects in context of sharability. Let’s face it; it’s easy enough to get your friends to share something for you. What becomes a true test of virality is how many of your friends’ friends re-share what they saw.
Then you might say: “Great! They shared stuff; I’ll be popular very soon!”
To which I say, hold your horses just a little there. It is also important to understand your product and target audience/market fit. For example; it may be very easy to get a cool 3D printed cat themed product viral and shared within Reddit; however if attempting to broadcast this on other websites/communities with a different culture and set of inside-references, your product might not get shared at all.
Which brings up an interesting question: do you design for a specific community (supply/demand model), or do you design something completely different that plays on other tangents of virality (new market creation model) and attempt to hit a cross-section of existing communities and markets.
Well, the answer to that is you. In almost all cases, that choice beckons what you, yourself, are truly passionate about, and what will make you put the extra effort into making your product become a hit. Whether it’s something you create for a personal or innovation reason, or it’s something you think is “hilariously awesome” and want to use to make other people smile with, and dig the idea that just snuck up on them. From there on out, it’s all about letting your inspiration and creativity lead you.
You can even combine markets and interest factors with pop-culture and contemporary inside-references. For example, things like “Twerking iPhone 5 Case” or “Internet Meme Poker Chips Set”, right now, have a virality potential that is higher than for example just “my new iPhone 5 Case”.
In almost all cases, when you find yourself looking for inspiration to create that runaway hit that everyone talks about; scour the media; the interwebs; popular online communities; and your friends for fads, interests and clever references that you can incorporate into your designs.
The bottom line of virality is to keep everything mentioned above in mind while you are creating. It’s easier to hit virality with existing trends and fads than it is to do with something completely new and original. At the same time though; the rewards (both financially, and emotionally), scale across that spectrum of easy to tough.
Ultimately, you are your own master, and experimenting with examples that hit nicely across the spectrum of inspiration from “riding a bandwagon” to “this is completely groundbreaking” is what is going to give you the experience needed to nail a product/market fit.
Have you ever dreamed about your products gracing the shelves of big department stores? Or doing a collection for a huge household brand?
Big name brands are very interesting in the 3D Printing spaces, and as it continues to penetrate the mainstream consumer market, big brands often reach out to incorporate our Shop Owners and designs into their product lines. Today we are excited to announce a partnership with featuring two Shapeways Shop Owners, Bathsheba Grossman, and Roger Pearce!
Roger Pearce was chosen for this opportunity because he entered and won our pendant contest a few months back. Neiman Marcus loved the design, and are offering it personalized through their website as an exclusive Shapeways on Neiman Marcus collection. If Roger hadn't been proactive in entering the contest, he may never have had this opportunity. hinthint We do at least one contest a week, so be sure and check the blog and the forum for the latest, the contests often give you secret insight into the Shapeways roadmap.
Bathsheba Grossman is "lifetime" Shapie and respected artist across the global design community. Always pushing the boundaries of what's possible with the technology, Bathsheba's refined sculptures and products are often already known by the big brands that approach us. She is a fantastic designer we love working with, and someone I feel lucky to know personally.
What Brands have you dreamed of working for?
Remember, new Shapeways customers save $15 on their order of $75 through midnight pacific time tonight with code "ghost" - Happy Halloween Shapies!
Have you ever wished our materials were cheaper? We have too! We’re committed to make 3D printing accessible to anyone, and today, we’re excited to announce that we’re repricing our ceramics to be more consistent with how we price the rest of our materials - by volume of material used instead of surface area. We’re also making it easier for you to calculate and compare pricing: This means that most existing ceramic models will become much cheaper like this candle holder by Virtox!
For a long time now, we've been keeping a horrible secret from our community. We've tried very hard to give the impression that our team is made of fun-loving humans who would drop everything at any hour of the day to help make your ideas real. However, the truth has a way of sneaking up on you, and it's time that you hear the truth...
We regret to inform you that we are actually, not human. Our Customer Service team was attacked by zombies, witches and vampires last Halloween, and have since attacked the entire Eindhoven office. You have to see it to believe it:
Trust that this will not change our commitment to you, and we hope that this does change your impression of us. Perhaps just bring some garlic and stakes to the next Meetup, just in case...
Sebastian Schild had a problem: His bird Jim was stressing out and everything Sebastian tried to do to help him just didn't do the trick. Then an .stl and some ingenuity came to the rescue. Here is Sebastian describing his process:
"The names of our birds are Jim and Knopf, after characters in a German TV show for children. Our male bird, Jim, needs the collar because he started to pick out all of his feathers. It started about 2-3 years ago and in the meantime he had picked out nearly all feathers from his front, his legs and under his wings. That must be a psychological problem (perhaps with his "wife") because the veterinarian did not find any other cause.
We've recently launched a bunch of new materials at Shapeways, so for today's Shop Owner Challenge, Raphael, one of our Materials Geniuses, shares tips for selecting the best material. Enjoy!
When picking materials for your model, think about how the material will help to position it as a product. Is it an exclusive piece that you want to only offer in Premium Silver? Or a versatile design that looks great in a range of materials and price points? Using different materials, a single design can become a variety of different products. For example, a model of a ring could become a fun, inexpensive piece of costume jewelry Alumide, or a precious keepsake in Polished Brass. Each deserve unique photos, descriptions, and price points.
Choosing the right materials for your products isn’t always easy, and has a huge impact on the value and success of your product. Here are some tips from the materials team to help you make the best choices.
Brass, Bronze, or Steel? With our recent launches, there are a wide range of steel finishes, and high-detail cast metals available. Both make for great products, but at different price points and levels of finish. Steel tends to be a bit rough, almost vintage looking, and lower resolution, with a lower price point to match. Our various steel finishes, including Gold and Nickel and Bronze offer the highest surface quality and consistency, while Patinas such as Matte black, and the basic steel is better for more rustic or steampunk pieces. To achieve much higher resolution and surface finish, our Brass and Bronze use the same casting process as Silver, and reproduce the finest details at high-end shopper ready quality.
Polished vs. Raw
While all our steel finishes are polished to improve print quality, Brass, Bronze, and Silver use such a high resolution production product that we’re able to offer both Raw and Polished version of these materials. Both are shopper ready materials, so the choice here is mostly an aesthetic one: Raw is rugged and rustic, while Polished is elegant and refined.
While we offer unpolished WSF and Alumide, you should think of these as low-end materials for prototyping and functional parts. Aside from special cases such as large or delicate designs and functional parts, we’d recommend disabling WSF for shoppers and directing them to polished materials, including Polished WSF, Polished Alumide, Black Strong and Flexible, or Colored Strong and Flexible.
Polished vs. Premium Silver The difference between Polished and Premium Silver often causes confusion. Both are polished, but the key distinction is the amount of polishing time invested in polishing internal details and hard to reach spaces. A simple ring may look very similar in both finishes, while something like Bathsheba’s Ora pendant will look very different;
Many successful shop-owners already have amazing miniatures on Shapeways that they offer in FUD or Detail Plastic. With cast brass and bronze, you can now offer these models in all their glorious detail to a much wider range of customers, and at a higher price point. When we launched these materials, we bought some popular miniatures in brass and bronze, and they haven’t left our desks since!
While you’re at it, you may want to consider enabling you models in Detail Plastic as well. While FUD offers stunning resolution, functional parts and supports the fine parts that miniatures enthusiasts love, our black and white detail materials offer a more shopper ready finish that can make these designs accessible beyond the finish-it-yourself market.
While great for visual models and items which don’t see extensive wear, our Black and Dyed Strong & Flexible aren’t recommended for things like iPhone cases which see constant surface wear. They look great at first, but eventually the dye can wear through, creating lighter spots in the finish, and potentially disappointing your customers. White Strong & Flexible doesn’t wear through in this way, but because it’s white it can look dirty with wear. For functional parts, or things where you don’t mind a bit of a worn-in look, this can be just fine. If that’s not what you’re looking for, Polished Alumide is a great alternative.
On the materials team we’re surprised Alumide isn’t a more popular material: it’s relatively inexpensive, polishes up to be very smooth, and wears well. The speckled grey color hides wear and helps to prevent discoloration, making for long-lasting products. The powder has the same color throughout, unlike our Dyed Strong & Flexible plastics; you can keep it in your pocket all day and the color will stay consistent. All that, and it sparkles too!
For smaller and more precious items, Brass and Bronze, in both Raw and Polished finishes, are durable solid metals that will wear beautifully, adding to their character. Steel is similarly long-lasting, but offers lower resolution, and a lower cost. Gold Plated Brass, is durable, but can eventually wear through if exposed to constant rubbing on clothing, skin, or when used as functional parts.
This weeks Designer Spotlight focuses on Joaquin Baldwin, an animator who uses his professional skills and passion to create amazing figures with 3D printing.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I'm an animator living in Los Angeles. I work at the Walt Disney Animation Studios, where we make animated features (such as Wreck-It Ralph and Frozen, which comes out in November). I've made several animated shorts that have been on hundreds of film festivals and got a lot of attention online, they can be seen on my website. I'm also a photographer, and love taking pics of my 3D prints.