While filament swapping to create multi-color 3D prints is nothing new and has been exploited to tremendous effect by other designers, Andre Tiemann has been spending quite a bit of time refining an abstract approach to color swapping to create striking 2.5D color images build around bits and pieces of flattened/reworked 3D models — here is an Instructables tutorial he has create to help you design multi-color layer art of your own!
I was asked to design and print a logo for a University not long ago. The text was black and red and this was all well and good but I really wanted some contrast for the base. If only I could produce three colours using my Replicator.
Then it hit me, I can.
I need multiple files layered one on top of each other. To do this, I used the dual-extruders available on the machine to thin the layers out a bit, but the technique is possible with single extrusion as well.
Basically you need to load File 1 and switch to different colours when it finished before loading file 2 (I’ve done 8 colours so far). (After each file finishes, it is important to keep the platform of the machine heated so that nothing comes loose.)
In total, I used Sketchup, ReplicatorG, NetFabb Basic, Adobe Illustrator, thingiverse and Meshlab to get everything done.
I’ve attached several photos of things I’ve done using this technique in the last few weeks.
Note, the 3D part of the stairwell was taken from Thingiverse Item 18290 – PrettySmallThings.
And here is a set of tips he shared on a guest post over at 3Ders.org:
- If I am tracing a work that already exists (Andy Warhol, Stuart Davis and Duck Hunt), I always start tracing the image from the middle and move outward.
- I keep everything on a level, two-dimensional plain until after the entire image is created. This holds true whether I am tracing something or creating a new image from scratch.
- While printing, the way each layer fills in typically gives you a good idea of when a colour change is approaching. If some areas start filling in at 100% while the remainder of the job continues filling in at the sliced setting, you know a change is coming soon.
- It’s good to give each colour three to four layers. This avoids missing colour changes, but also provides a buffer if the first layer or two don’t print cleanly.