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  • Arkify Team

3D Scanning to 3D Printing Workflow For Sculptural Artists

3D scanning your artwork will not only digitally preserve it, but also make it possible to quickly replicate it many times over to sell to your patrons

Are you an artist looking to 3D print copies of your work? In this blog, we'll walk you through the basic workflow of taking a freshly made sculpture from 3D scanning to 3D printing. While this process may sound complex at first, it couldn't be easier!


Interested in learning more about the benefits of 3D scanning for artists? Check out our article "Should You 3D Scan Your Artwork?" here!


Step #1 - 3D Scanning

We start the process by taking 3D scans of your sculpture from different angles to ensure the entire item has been captured. Once all of the pieces have been scanned, we align all the scans together in our 3D editing software. Our software will generate a 1-to-1 3D model replica of the sculpture from the scans.

One of the keys to creating a beautiful 3D print starts with a highly detailed mesh file. Our 3D scanners can capture up to 0.15mm resolutionenough to show the fingerprints on a human hand! We can also accurately capture any color or painted textural detail on your artworkan excellent option if you'd like your 3D print to include the color of your sculpture.


Step #2 - Editing The Mesh

After the 3D model has been created our team has the ability to edit it further in our software. We can make such edits as cleaning up and smoothing out rough spots, duplicating and removing portions of it, or giving it a flat base (check out our blog post "Mesh Editing for CAD, 3D Printing, Mold Making, And More" to learn more about potential edits our we can make for your scans).


Step #3 - 3D Printing

At this moment, Arkify does not offer 3D printing services. Once we finish editing and cleaning the 3D model, we will send you a file of your digitized sculpture to print on your own (typically a .stl file). For 3D printing, you have a few options!


If you have a 3D printer: You can import the file we send you into a free 3D printing software such as Cura to start your printing.


If you don't have a 3D printer: There are many easy-to-use 3D printing services online (such as this one) where all you need to do is upload your file, select the material you'd like it printed in, and the company will ship the print to you when it is finished.


As you can see, it couldn't be easier to start 3D printing your artwork! If you have any questions or would like to begin a scanning project with us please reach out via arkify3d@gmail.com or using the Contact form on our website!


Happy Scanning!


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