3D Printed Selfies: A Look Into The Machine That Can 3D Print You

Objex Unlimited is a Canadian based company that offers additive manufacturing solutions for industrial applications, art projects, and other types of commissioned work.

It might seem like a regular company, but that’s only until you enter the Selftraits division.

The Selftraits division is what most people would describe as a very modern version of a photo studio.

What makes the studio so modern is the “Cobra”, a 360-degree photo booth, capable of taking over 100 photos, “stitch” them together an create a 3D printed version of the subject.

How does 3D Photography work?

In order to create a 3D print from a photo (actually multiple photos), Selftraits utilizes software that can analyze the photos, extract data from them and create digital points in space. This process is called photogrammetry.

During this process, the software aligns the photos to provide reference points of where the photos were taken, mines the photos for extra information (including color) and creates a digital “mesh” stitching the data points together before applying the final texture.

The rendered figurine is then imported into modeling software where digital sculptors on staff clean up any imperfections in the data, digitally sculpting under the arms and in any areas that require further detail work.

The end model is then sent to the 3D printers (for figurines the company uses two 3D Systems Projet 660) and printed.

You would think that at this point the job is complete, but that’s not the case.

After the print this done, it’s time for the finishing artist to do the magic. During this delicate stage, the print is extracted, sanded, coated in glue to make it harder, and then sanded again.

It’s not exactly an easy and quick process but the results are impressive. Figurines are surprisingly realistic and accurate and make it a great Christmas tree ornament or birthday present.

Read more at design-engineering.com