Stone Symposium

This sounds incredibly cool! 25 artists invited to a traditional Maori powhiri in New Plymouth, New Zealand. When I get around to setting some career goals for myself, getting invited to something like this would definitely be a great goal.


Here’s some more info on the symposium from Jon Barlow Hudson’s site.


The Personalities of Creative People

Matthew Schuler has posted on his blog a nice summary of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s book “Creativity: The Work and Lives of 91 Eminent People“. To summarize his summary – creative people tend to be more comfortable with holding contradictory views or positions in their thinking.

I recommend reading the list of 9 contradictory traits that are frequently present in creative people. The one that resonated the most, for me, was:

“Perhaps the most important quality, the one that is most consistently present in all creative individuals, is the ability to enjoy the process of creation for its own sake.”

Glass Sculptures Of Deadly Viruses

Glass sculpture is very cool. I’ve been to both the Corning and Waterford glass works.

Making glass sculptures of deadly viruses is odd but fascinating [seen here, Malaria]:

Source [ includes a video]:

3D Modeling

Clearly in order to make any use of 3D printing I will need to be able to create a 3D model; which in turn requires 3D modeling software. My hope is that using a modeling app I could at least plan out any sculpting project; even if I never intend to have it reproduced.

I was poking around the internet to see what kind of workshops/tutorials I could find related to sculpture. I did find a few things of interest; one of which was a short series of beginning modeling tutorials for kids.

It looked like a good place to get my feet wet with modeling. The classes used Blender as the modeling tool. So I did some digging into the software. One important feature for me is that Blender has very low hardware requirements compared to other 3D applications (I’m not currently in a position to upgrade my hardware). With a little digging I found that there are a ton of other online tutorials; so that check-box is checked.

Looking over the feature set I saw something called “sculpting organic subjects”. Not quite sure how that differs from other types of modeling but it looks like it could be useful for planning out sculpture projects. In addition, Blender now comes with it’s own rendering app (called Cycles).

It looks as though Blender can do way more than I’ll ever need as far as 3D modeling goes but can it be used in 3D printing? What what I’ve found so far is that Blender does support the base file format called STL (they also support a format called X3D that looks applicable). There is a file standard, used in 3D printing, called Additive Manufacturing File Format (AMF) that Blender doesn’t seem to currently support. It looks like it may be possible to export a Blender file to this format using a third party add-on. Since the file format requirements vary among printers I’m not too worried that any work I do in Blender can’t be utilized for printing. If Blender can’t natively support the requirements of a given project, then there is likely a way to import it into another program that can convert the model into a useful format. Here’s a item that described what this person went through to convert his Blender model into a 3D printed object.

The World’s Most Complex Sand Castle

One idea for a sculpture project that I’m toying with is to design a piece that is meant to be viewed from within, as well as, without.  In other words you would be able to walk through the piece; experiencing a unique environment when in the middle of the sculpture.

The project in this item gives me some inspiration as to how this could be done. Interestingly they viewed their project as a form of architecture. Their focus is on pushing an interesting boundary: “How could an architecture that is entirely designed by algorithms look?” For me a key takeaway is this observation:

One of the most astonishing things, and something we’re still trying to get our head around, is that it costs the exact same amount to 3-D print a plain box as it does to print the most elaborate form conceivable. The costs are the same, and the amount of time required is the same. It is only the outside dimensions that matter, so there is no longer any cost for complexity and no cost for ornament.

You gotta love that the printer they ended up using is meant to fabricate molds and the sand models were not usually thought of as the finished piece.

Another example of a sculpture created with these printers can be seen here….

Click through to the full item for a video of them creating and assembling their sculpture.

Source [includes short video]

Roy Lichtenstein Sculpture Arrives at New Orleans Museum of Art

I didn’t know that Roy Lichtenstein did sculpture, did you? I assume you are familiar with his pop art paintings; reminiscent of a panel from a comic.

At first I couldn’t imagine what a Lichtenstein sculpture would look like. I’m going to tease you and not post an image here. If you’re curious, you’ll have to go to the source item to see for yourself. Once I saw the picture, my reaction was – I should have guessed….


Philadelphia Condemns Artist’s Studio to Put Up a Parking Lot

If you are a property owner the words “eminent domain” should strike terror in your soul.  Local artist, James Dupree, is having his studio taken by the city of Philadelphia for less than a third of its asking price. Ilya Somin (who runs a great blog called The Volokh Conspiracy) described it as “one of the many economic development takings that destroy more economic value than they create“. Since the city was using a loophole in Pennsylvania’s version of eminent domain, there is a chance that Mr. Dupree can prevail in this matter. I wish him the best of luck….

Dupree Studios


Low-Cost, Open-Source 3D Metal Printer

The big news, this week, is MIT’s release of an open source 3D printer that uses metal. They estimate the printer can be built from $1,500 of materials. Compare that with the cost of commercial metal printers which cost over $500,000. This is definitely a development to watch closely.


Grounds For Sculpture

One of the first places I visited, as a way to expose myself to the current world of sculpture, was the Grounds For Sculpture. The concentration of so many interesting pieces on one place was very stimulating. If you are ever in the Trenton, New Jersey area be sure and check it out.

Really love this idea of a sculpture garden (but the real estate and insurance costs are likely too high for me to create one; very tempting though). Imagine an outdoor garden attraction featuring scheduled/temporarily outdoor sculpture exhibitions connected to a food/music/gallery space (would adding a day spa be going too far)…

Their web site:

Here’s one of the shots I took while there; from inside one of the buildings looking out:

Not only is the art work very cool, so are the grounds:

Unique Material

I once did a sand casting using aluminum. That was a ton of fun. Still have a vivid memory of the aluminum burning through the top of the steel bucket.

Casting in concrete isn’t new. It is especially common for outdoor/garden pieces. However, transparent concrete is another matter….

I really hope someone is experimenting with transparent concrete as an art medium:


Intersection of 3D Printing and Sculpture

I have no prior experience with CAD but I am interested in the possible intersection of 3D printing and sculpture. Of particular interest is the possibility of 3D printing coupled with a 3D scanner as a possible way to make sculpture reproducible (or at least lower the CAD requirement).
Since most artists can’t afford the costs of most of this type of equipment you have to keep an eye out for lower cost models. This Ars Technica item has the details on a sub $500 scanner:


Blog Header Images

My current plan is to change the header image from time to time. I intend to use images with a Creative Commons license. When using an image with a Creative Commons license you are supposed to give credit to the artist by providing a link back to the source of the image (flickr’s description).

At this point in my WordPress learning curve, I have been unable to figure out how to assign a source link to the header image. So I’m using this post to provide the source credits.

The first image I’ve used (which provides a nice “holiday theme”) is from: Elsie esq.

Update 12/26: The header image is credited to: Mike Mccaffrey.

Update 2/7: The header image is credited to: fdecomite [btw – it looks like this photographer has a ton of photos that should of interest to 3d printed art fans; check it out]

Update 3/6: The header image is credited to: Matt Lawrence

Update 5/1: The header image is credited to: Mooganic

Update 10/15: The header image is credited to: Chrisseee

Update 12/27: The header image is credited to: Mooganic

Update 1/31: The header image is credited to: Ian.Kobylanski

Update 7/8: The header image is credited to: Mooganic