October 11

From 2D to 3D – Turning Doodle Art to Printed Part


The time when Imaginarium surprised a group of curious minds by showcasing the awesome capabilities of 3D printing to turn mere ideas into shiny metal, cherished forever.

3D printing is inherently a technology that is fuelled by man’s creative imagination. When you 3D print an object, you shape your imagination into physical reality. At Imaginarium India, this is the drive that we cherish in our work, to bring ideas to life with cutting edge technology.

At an introductory seminar on ‘3D Printing and It’s Applications’ that Imaginarium organized in collaboration with CII (Confederation of Indian Industry), we demonstrated the process of materializing the most abstract of ideas at a level that was very up close and personal. And the result was a whole lot of smiles and elation!

The Idea

The participants of the seminar, a vibrant mix of high spirited professionals from throughout the manufacturing industry, were all asked to draw a doodle within a standardized square box, any abstract art form  that holds a significant meaning to them. And so they did, without knowing what we had in store for them with these doodles.

The outcomes were quite interesting, and visually striking as cumulative representation of ideas of 30 imaginative brains:

After concluding the seminar, we got on to working our magic with the doodles, giving them a solid form and bringing them to life. The process was undertaken in 3 parts, as follows:

Digitisation: From Paper to Digital 3D Design

Any object to be 3D printed must have three dimensions. The doodles, however, were drawn in two. To add a third dimension of height to them, the drawings were scanned and uploaded to a 3D CAD software as a .jpeg file.

With the help of some skilled 3D sculpting by our talented design team, the drawings were traced on a 3D plane to form a closed loop curve inside a X-Y square, and then extruded in the Z dimension to form a three dimensional object!

Materialization Phase I : 3D Printing in Wax Resin

The 3D files obtained was then sent to a DLP/RapidShape printer for 3D printing in wax resin, printing each batch in a matter of couple of hours! The resin was chosen as such to be directly castable, for smooth facilitation of casting in metal, the last step of the process.


Materialization Phase II: Casting in Metal and Finishing Touches

To turn the 3D printed wax prototypes into shiny metal, the parts were taken through the process of investment casting or lost-wax casting, a method of metal casting where molten metal is poured into a POP mold created by means of a wax model.

Wax Tree

Once the mold was made, the wax model was melted and drained away. The negative cavity left behind was filled with molten metal and cooled down, to obtain a replica of the wax prototype of doodles in metal. This was then subjected to various post processes to give it a smooth finish and an elegant shine!

Art to Part

Of Pleasant Surprises And Glowing Appreciation

The doodles, now brought to life, were attached to a personalized note of gratitude and dispatched to the homes of every participant from the seminar, the surprise that was promised to them.

While we couldn’t have the good fortune of seeing the happy look on their faces when they saw their ideas, ever so fleeting, now tuned into beautiful metal, we did hear from them and they were extremely kind with their words:(testimonial)As for our end, that feeling of ‘Mission Accomplished!’ on knowing that you have touched lives with your work still lingers. The ability to imagine is perhaps the greatest gift that we have as humans. It is what sets us apart, defines us. Man would still be living in caves if he never imagined a better place to call home. We would still traversing unfathomable distances on roads if our imagination didn’t lend us wings to fly, quite literally. Henry David Thoreau was right when he stated,

“The world is but a canvas to our imagination”

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