Aug 30, 2017 | By Benedict

WhiteClouds, the Utah-based cloud 3D printing specialist, has launched a Kickstarter campaign for an amazing set of 3D printed “Fractal Skulls.” The colorful skulls are designed with mind-bending, computer-generated fractal patterns, and finished with a glossy protective coating.

Thanks to 3D printing, collecting skulls is an activity no longer restricted to bounty hunters, shamans, and physicians. It’s true: with the right 3D model and the right 3D printer, makers can now obtain amazing-looking “human” skulls in a safe, harmless way. (They’re just as creepy though.)

These colorful Fractal Skulls from cloud specialist WhiteClouds might not be the most physiologically realistic skulls we’ve ever seen, but they are by some margin the coolest. Adorned with nature-inspired, computer-generated fractal patterns, the skulls would look at home on the mantlepiece of even the gentlest curio collector.

At first glance, it’s easy to think that the psychedelic heads can’t possibly have been 3D printed, but that’s thanks to an incredible sheen on the pieces achieved with WhiteClouds’ high-gloss protective finishing.

All in all, they’re quite a spectacle.

“Our skulls combine two natural wonders, the marvel of human anatomy and fractals, into a single piece of art,” WhiteClouds says. “These elegant pieces are anatomically correct human skulls decorated with fractals—computer-generated patterns found everywhere in nature.”

What’s perhaps most impressive about the Fractal Skulls collection is how every single design is a masterpiece. Even if you wouldn’t really want a skull sitting in your home, there’s something ludicrously visually satisfying about the symmetrical ebb and flow of the fractal patterns rendered in glorious color.

And as any regular 3D printer user will know, getting color like that is no mean feat. To get the skulls looking as they do, WhiteClouds used a 3D Systems ProJet 660 ColorJet 3D printer—one of the reasons why makers might consider ordering a skull from WhiteClouds rather than make their own copy on a consumer FDM machine.

The WhiteClouds option comes at a cost, of course, but not an extortionate one. Small skulls are available for a $20 Kickstarter pledge, with medium-size ones at $30 and large ones at $75. Buying multiple skulls will get you discounts, while Stretch Goals include a skull candle holder and skull chess set.

There’s a reason why these models are on Kickstarter too. By crowdfunding the awesome skull project, WhiteClouds can gauge customer interest and decide whether it should expand the 15-piece collection to include a further 15 new designs.

Cool as they look, these designs are the work of mathematics as much as the human eye and hand.

“Fractals help us study and understand important scientific concepts, such as the way bacteria grows, patterns in freezing water (snowflakes), brain waves, etc,” WhiteClouds says. “Fractals can be seen everywhere in nature. Look closely at a pinecone, ferns, a seashell, lightning, or the feathers of a peacock. They are all beautiful fractals creating artwork on the canvas of nature.”

Of course, the skull fractals are made by nature-mimicking computer algorithms rather than nature itself, but that’s perhaps even more impressive! Whatever numbers WhiteClouds has been feeding into its modeling software, the results are stunning.

And what better physical form to give nature-inspired patterns than the human skull, the greatest symbolic and physical embodiment of our own nature?

“The human skull has carried strong connotations for ages,” WhiteClouds explains. “The skull has symbolized life and the embodiment of consciousness and at the same time reminds us of our own mortality. Combining the mortal skull with the infinite fractal creates an intriguing art piece.”

WhiteClouds, we wholeheartedly agree.



Posted in Fun with 3D Printing



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