If beautifully ornate, 3D Printed skulls scare you, turn away, TURN AWAY NOW! You’ve been warned. If you listen to the EvD podcast, you know I have a Kickstarter addiction (hey, the first step to healing is admitting.) It’s exactly because of incredibly cool ideas like Crania Anatomica Filigre by Joshua Harker that are changing how artist work and how they’re able to present their ideas. Here’s a look into the project and the process Josh uses.

The Process

The skulls on the Kickstarter project are 3D printed using SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) with Polyamide nylon, but some of Josh’s artwork goes a step beyond, using the 3D print as a form for a investment mold which is then used to cast the piece in bronze.

my sculptures are created digitally using industrial design & sculpture software. The exported digital file of the sculpture is loaded into the 3D printer which “prints” the physical model…When the print is complete the remaining unbonded powder is brushed & blown away to liberate the pattern. The pattern is then cleaned & prepped then completely encased in an investment mold (like plaster). The mold with the model still inside is then put into a furnace and the model is incinerated while the mold remains intact. The ash is blown & vacuumed out. The investment mold is then placed under vacuum & molten bronze is poured into it. After the bronze has cooled the mold is broken away to reveal the metal sculpture. The gates & vents are cut off & the piece is sandblasted & polished. – Joshua Harker

You can see a lot of Joshua’s sculptures in full 3D at his Sculpteo shop including the skull. The project has already hit the goal, but you can still get in on the action. To fund the project, just hit Joshua’s Crania Anatomica Filigre Kickstarter project. A $50 backing gets you a (small) Polyamide nylon 3D print of the skull and you’ll get a poster, shirt and wallpaper to boot. Skull-tastic.

All Images: Joshua Harker


Josh is founder and editor at SolidSmack.com, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.