Along with the photos, the Objet blog now has the pleasure of bringing you the full interview transcript below, where I was able to ask Sean to fill in the gaps about his remarkable work:
(Sam Green): Sean, please tell us about your professional background and how you got into design?
(Seam Charlesworth): My undergrad was in Film & TV and I have spent the last 10 years repairing cameras and equipment for New York University. I recently finished a Masters at NYU in Digital Imaging and Design with a concentration in 3D modeling and printing. 3D printing really appealed to me since it combined hands on work and physical objects with digital design. The fact that I could build something like this with virtually no tools, molds and machinery was exciting.
(SC): Overall the biggest challenge was designing everything to fit together and work mechanically. Since my background is in modeling for the entertainment industry I was using Cinema 4D and Maya which are probably not the best choice when designing something so mechanical. I knew CAD would probably be a better choice but wanted to stick with what I know and also didn’t have the time to learn something new. This made things more challenging but was a valid workflow since so many different industries are using 3D printing now.
Of all the mechanical bits to work out, the tentacles were by far the hardest and required the most test prints. I knew the tentacles had to really come alive or the model would be a flop. I rejected traditional joints for various reasons and ended up printing a flexible core with Objet’s rubber-like Tango material and fusing Objet Vero rigid knuckles to it for detail. I modeled a small shaft down the center and inserted brass armature wires afterward so the tentacles could be posed dramatically. It took about four versions to get it right.
(SC): I plan on reprinting some improved parts for the Octopod and adding some details that I didn’t have time for initially. After that I would like to do a project using the ABS-like Digital Material and try some finishing and painting techniques on it.
(SG): Thanks for your time and wishing you all the very best in your future endeavors!
(SC): Thank you!
I highly recommend a visit to Sean’s blog where you can see a fantastic time-lapse of the entire octopod build process and some more photographs, complete with explanatory captions.