Android App has been launched!

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I am delighted to announce Spearhead Interactive’s latest release! My SLS Ware Collection Jewellery App, which, is now live on Android!

The app is free to download from this link:

http://ht.ly/yUFLm

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DESIGNER JEWELLERY COLLECTION GETS THE SPEARHEAD TREATMENT

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I am please to announce that recently I have been working with a 3D Solutions company ‘Spearhead Interactive’ and they have taken my digital jewellery designs and developed them into an interactive application for iOS and Android! This will showcase my latest jewellery collection ‘SLS ware’ within an interactive, globally accessible mobile application.

The applicationis due to be launched on 8th July for Android users, with an iOS version following soon after.

For more information, please check out their blog, website and share with your friends and family.

Jweel: Open Jewellery

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Jweel, a product of Skimlab, is an application that provides two user-friendly modelling programmes that allows everyone to have a go at designing their own piece of jewellery. As part of their services, Jweel claims to give every user, regardless of technical skill or jewellery know-how, the chance to create their own jewellery and express themselves creatively.

From this, I believe that this software has been cleverly designed and marketed:  I agree with the statement made on their website that “everyone has an inherent need to express themselves” and by removing the cost of buying a modelling programme and the complications that can arise from designing a piece of digital jewellery from scratch, Jweel can reach and appeal to wider audiences.

(All images are sourced from www.jweel.com/en/)

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The two modelling programmes consist of a Text ring and Freestyle ring app. The text ring application is the simpler of the two, promising exactly what it is titled as: a ring made up from text of your choosing. Available options for editing include the size of the ring, the font, italics and/or bold, and a comprehensive range of symbols.
In contrast, the Freestyle ring application offers much more freedom, but of course this requires more time to master. Although, the interface of this application appears quite basic and minimal at a glance, once I had grasped how the features worked, I was pleasantly surprised at how intuitive this application operates.

With both applications, once the design is complete, you can choose from silver, gold, brass, steel or titanium and a finish of sandblasted, gloss or at a premium, high gloss and, from the gallery provided on the website, each design is finished to a very high standard.

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I think this is a great application for introducing CAD and CAM to a wider consumer market and for the services provided, at a reasonable price. In my personal opinion, I found some features on the applications limited: restricting some of my own design ideas. However, this comes from an individual who already has some experience with CAD and could create the exact design she wanted in another programme: it most certainly does not speak for other individuals and their experiences.

Overall, I enjoyed using this software and I intend to enter one of their monthly competitions. I really appreciated the direct link between constructing your design digitally and having it manufactured: with efficient rendering and price updates. Additionally, I am excited about the potential of more online modelling programmes/apps. Not only will this eliminate the need to buy or download software: making CAD more accessible, but it may also mean an increase in specialist programmes with refined features e.g. stone setting for jewellery.

Pupworkshop.com!

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A couple of of days ago, I stumbled across an online app http://pupworkshop.com/. This is an endearing piece of software that allows you to design your own 3D printed puppy!

Created by Tom Rethaller and powered by Blender, Shapeways and Sculpteo, the application requires no download and is very user-friendly, providing a range of doggy features and a full spectrum of colours to choose from. Once your design is finished, you are offered two options for printing: from Shapeways or Sculpteo, along with very considerate comments about which company service will be cheaper or faster in processing the order.

Your ‘Puppy’ is printed by a Zcorp 3D printer in multicoloured sandstone, which is composed of binder material and coloured ink, layered together and sealed. There are three options for sizes: 4, 5 and 6 cm.

Although I did not get my own design printed (see above) I really enjoyed the experience of creating my own puppy. The application was easy to use and I really appreciated how I was navigated effortlessly to the printing sites provided to complete my order.

For a small cost of around 8 euros (excluding postage) I would definitely recommend this site for a bit of 3D printing fun!

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Makerbot 5th Generation 3D printer at Loughborough University!

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So, during my last week as a Technician at Loughborough University, we had a new arrival….
A Makerbot Replicator 5th generation 3D printer!
This printer comes cloud enabled and with a computer application, can print 11% larger than the Replicator 2 and has a 100 micron layer resolution: meaning it can print paper thin layers!

What initially impressed me about this printer was the application, once installed, it was very user friendly. With pre-installed files for demo prints and an simple user manual: it wasn’t long until me and my colleague has set off our first print!

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Due to the size and quantity of the files, this print took around 3 hours and once finished each piece needed to be prised off the base.
This was another pleasant feature of the Makerbot printer: as part of the printing process, a base, the same size of the object being printed, is constructed which has a reduced amount of contact with printing platform, making it easier to pull off.

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Although I had a limited amount of time to use the makerbot, I am really excited about the potential this printer shall bring to the studios.
It uses a PLA plastic also known as Polylactic acid (as opposed to an ABS) which not only is safer: as it doesn’t give off fumes, but it is also biodegradable and has a slightly lower melting temperature. This means that it could be used in Lost wax casting!
Overall, I was thoroughly impressed with the Makerbot, a lot of the software and provided files are still in Beta mode, but from initial usage, it was a productive and exciting experience!

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Going Freelance: An update!

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Hi everyone!
So since the summer I have now started work as a technician at Loughborough university! I am really enjoying the job and it also means I have access to the facilities for my own work.
With regards to that, since September I have been featured in two exhibitions:

Portal 2013
September 14th – November 9th 2013
Llantarnam Grange Arts Centre, St David’s Road,
Cwmbran, NP44 1PD, Torfaen, Wales.
http://www.lgac.org.uk/ (see image above)

Lustre 2013
8 – 10th November 2013
Lakeside Arts Centre, University Park, Nottingham NG7 2RD
http://www.lakesidearts.org.uk/Crafts/LUSTRE.html

Both exhibitions were a great success and in conjunction with portal 2013, the shell series was featured on 3D PRINT UK’s website!
http://www.3dprint-uk.co.uk/portfolio/debbie-claxtons-sls-shell-series-beautifully-crafted-shell-sculptures/
Since then, I have had several commissions and interest from online companies and I plan to be far more active on this blog to keep you all up to date with my experiments and projects.
Images from Lustre are to follow.

Final Designs.

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Over the past two weeks, I have been working heavily with Maya to finalise my designs. With the deadlines looming, I managed to book a slot to send my files to the printer and this week the pieces came out!
The final result is brilliant, I am thoroughly pleased with them and I look forward to incorporating hand crafted metal into them. Below are the renders of the final pieces.