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3D Printed Models For Stop-Motion Animation: Past or Future?

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DBLG, a London based creative agency that also offers a bespoke 3D printing and modelling service has launched an interesting stop-motion animated video entirely based on the different poses of a cool, laser-cut-sharp looking, 3D printed white bear. A polar bear then.

As you can see, the project, properly named “Bear on Stairs” depicts a bear walking up an infinitely revolving set of steps. As simple as it may seem, the project requited the support of specialists such as Blue Zoo for character animation and Resonate for the audio mix and sound design. It also opens up some interesting questions on the use of 3D printing for stop-motion animation.

The technology has already been employed by animation giants such as DreamWorks and some time ago a young cinema student found that 3D printing allowed him to create a full short with limited economic means. The Bear on Stairs project, however, is not about cutting costs as much as it wants to stand out as a creative link to the past of animation, when it was achieved by successive hand drawn tables, while adding the physical third dimension to this basic process.

As Visual News reports, each frame of the video is a different 3D printed bear. Which also means that, since what we see in the final result is a three dimensional object moving through time, we are in fact viewing a 4D animated video. Whether that is the future or the past of animation is hard to tell but DBLG achieved its goal just by us posing the question.


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Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based 3dpbm. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites 3D Printing Media Network and Replicatore, as well as 3D Printing Business Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

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