Have you ever been asked these two questions in an art class or by an artist? What is art and how would you define it? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The basic premise of art is still the same, but technology has changed the way we create it. The use of 3D images and technology are used in many areas, especially in creative fields. 3D models are used in advertising, news, architecture, broadcast, games, training films, theatrical films, television, and are often used on the web.
3D imaging has exploded over the past decade and is even more popular today. A large number of companies are experimenting with 3D printers to make some amazing creations. Businesses are using 3D printers to create new products and improve old ones. Tech Republic author Lyndsey Gilpin recently examined ten major companies that are currently using 3D printers to create a wide variety of products for various industries. One of the many companies mentioned is Hasbro. It is using 3D printers to develop and commercialize Hasbro toys and games. Some of the brands they are looking to use in 3D printing are My Little Pony, Playskool, and Sesame Street. Quoted in the article is Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner. “We Believe 3D printing offers endless potential to bring incredible new play experiences for kids, and we’re excited to work with 3D Systems, a recognized industry leader in this space,” said Goldner. Another company using 3D printing and imaging is Hershey’s. The company has partnered with 3D Systems to make a printer for 3D chocolates and other edible goods.
Another company focused on 3D imaging is CGTrader. I spoke with Neringa Kaukolyte, marketing manager at CGTrader, to gain new insights into the company’s unique focus in 3D imaging. “CGTrader is a 3D model marketplace backed by a strong community of 3D designers. Founder and CEO Marius Kalytis is a 3D designer himself and wanted to create a better place for 3D designers to buy, sell and discover 3D models. CGTrader is a transparent and social marketplace where designers can not only discover high-quality designs but also interact in a friendly community, get feedback from peers, and participate in challenges. CGTrader currently unites around 55,000 3D designers in the community and more than 60,000 3D models, and is backed by Intel Capital and Practica Capital,” said Kaukolyte.
3D printing and imaging is not only changing the way businesses are creating innovative things, but is also inspiring the budding artist as well. CGTrader is powered by young community members and artists creating, learning, and developing their creations as young as nine years old. I asked Neringa what advice and inspiration she would give to new artists starting out. “The first step for any young artist is to start creating and experimenting. Peer and customer feedback is a great way to grow, so sharing their work on an online marketplace such as CGTrader can be very helpful. Also, looking through tutorials and the best 3D works online is a great way to learn and get inspiration on what can be created. Finally, it sometimes might make sense to specialize in a particular niche, so that the artist can achieve mastery and learn all the peculiarities of designing products in that niche,” said Kaukolyte.
While 3D imaging and printing is fascinating, it does not come without challenges. In The missing link in 3D printing: User-friendly software, author Lyndsey Gilpin discusses the challenges of 3D printing and its unintuitive CAD software. Gilpin states that 3D printing is cumbersome, difficult and unrealistic for non-engineers. She also says that there is a hole in the 3D printing industry which mainly has to do with a lack of user- friendly software. If there were more user-friendly programs out there more individuals might consider using the printing technique. Some artists and companies find hard to use software a challenge, while others breeze through the process. So whether you are a 3D artist or a consumer taking in all the world 3D has to offer, 3D printing is here to stay and the industry will continue to evolve as technology greatly enhances the creation process.