This week we came across an article, Rethinking objects and form are key to 3D printing revolution, and it really got us thinking about all of the possibilities 3D printing brings to the design and engineering table. If you ever find yourself on Pinterest, 3D printing blogs or anywhere that showcases 3D printed objects, once you get past all of the Yoda heads you are bound to see items that we already have, just re-created using a 3D printer (chairs, lamps, knobs, etc.). Though these items are cool to look at, we can’t help but think “Where is the real creativity?” in these products.
In the article (above) Terry Wohlers, an independent analyst who advises companies on the 3D printing sector, states the following regarding 3D printing: “You are almost unlimited as to the type of geometric complexity…You can do shapes and forms that otherwise would be very expensive to do with traditional manufacturing, or would require many parts that then are later assembled.” These new design and manufacturing possibilities are something that as designers we need to really gravitate towards. Thinking outside of the proverbial box. With all of the creative design tools at our disposal we should be showcasing unique products that stretch the boundaries of imagination.
Certain industries have already harnessed the creativity associated with 3D printing and are using the technology to better the lives of people everywhere. For example, “well over 90 percent of in-the-ear hearing aids are made using 3D printing, and that lets clever software, which can work out exactly how to optimize the acoustic properties of the hearing aid, into the manufacturing process”. When using 3D printing, design can look very organic and very different than what you would normally see.
We challenge our designer and engineering friends out there to begin rethinking objects during the design phase and allow more creativity into the process.
3D Innovations is a full service 3D Engineering/Design company – from the 3D Design to a fully functional 3D Prototype & Product.