Monday, November 25, 2013

Direct Dimensions Collaborating on Bmore3D Store

Bmore3D Store: A 3D Printing & 3D Scanning Pop-up Store Opens in Baltimore 

The Bmore3D Store is located at 2150 Boston St. in Baltimore, Maryland
Web:  Phone: 443-963-9456  Email: 

Custom 3D Stuff, Tinkerine Studio Ltd., ShapeShot and Direct Dimensions are collaborating to create the first retail store in the mid-Atlantic region focused on 3D scanning and 3D printing.  The Bmore3D Store is located at 2150 Boston Street in the Canton neighborhood of Baltimore, Maryland.  It opens in time for the holiday shopping season on Friday, November 29 and will remain open thru December.

Customers can shop a curated gallery of the most unique gifts in Baltimore, designed by Baltimore 3D artists.  Items include earrings, rings, necklaces, vases, and an assortment of unique Baltimore-themed pieces.  All items are designed using 3D modeling software and fabricated by an assortment of 3D printers.  The Ditto+ and Litto 3D printers from Tinkerine Studio will be on display in the store demonstrating 3D printing.  

The store also features ShapeShotTM, the world’s first fully automated 3D photo booth, featured in Time Magazine.  After being captured in 3D, customers can order their 3D-printed busts, jewelry, bobbleheads and even ceramic coffee mugs customized with a scale model of their face.  Bring your family, your babies, and even your pets!  ShapeShot lets you be the face of 3D printing.  

ShapeShot was developed by Direct Dimensions, the Baltimore-based engineering services firm also in the store providing 3D scanning of objects and unique full-body 3D scanning for amazing 3D printed miniature figurines.  In November, Direct Dimensions was showcased by The Smithsonian for its contributions to the groundbreaking SI x 3D project which brings museum artifacts online in 3D to the world.

The Bmore3D Store will also feature various educational and entertainment opportunities for visitors with technology discussions and demonstrations by regional 3D professionals.  These events will highlight methods of 3D design, 3D scanning, and 3D printing and other aspects of digital fabrication - fast becoming the new way for making things.  Everyone at all levels will find these sessions helpful, particularly professionals interested in implementing 3D tools in their workplace.

A schedule of activities will be posted on Bmore3D’s website featuring renowned 3D industry professionals, local artists, designers, and engineers.  Check back often for upcoming activities and meet-ups.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Gettysburg Sesquicentennial: Free Model Download

November 19, 2013 marks the sesquicentennial anniversary of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address.

At Direct Dimensions we've been fortunate enough to scan several Lincoln related items, including a plaster cast of his death mask. We have made a model of the mask available (for free download).

In 2008 Direct Dimensions also scanned the Volk Lincoln Life Mask. About that mask: The 1960 life casting was taken by sculptor Leonard Volk. It portrays Lincoln shortly before the outbreak of the American Civil War, and also before he had grown his iconic beard. Volk’s life mask was described by fellow sculptor Avard Fairbanks as “the most reliable document of the Lincoln face, and far more valuable than photographs, for it is the actual form.” According to a quote taken at the time of casting, “when [Lincoln] saw the final bust, he was quite pleased, declaring it ‘the animal himself.’”

You can read more about various Lincoln related projects on our website:
Volk Life Mask Scan
Scanning the Lincoln Memorial for Preservation
Animating Abraham Lincoln for the Movies


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Direct Dimensions is a Major Sponsor of Smithsonian's X 3D Conference

In 2008 Smithsonian Secretary G. Wayne Clough announced his plan to digitize the Smithsonian's holdings and share the collections online, dramatically expanding the institution's community and educational outreach.

The excitement generated by this announcement was palpable. Imagine what a digital representation of the Smithsonian could mean for educators or even just individuals who might not have the means to visit Washington, DC. Five years later we are about to see the first fruits of that plan.

On November 13th and 14th the Smithsonian will be holding the X 3D conference where they will unveil the first twenty digitized objects to the world.

From the Smithsonian:
Those objects will be unveiled in a new website and specially built app that will transform how the public can interact with Smithsonian content.

Press will see demonstrations of the 3-D scanners, printers and other devices that allow Smithsonian museum collections, scientific specimens and entire research sites to be digitally recorded, studied and shared in incredible detail.

Tomorrow is an exciting day for us at Direct Dimensions as we have been working with the Smithsonian on several projects related to this event. We also have the honor of being official sponsors of the conference (along with Autodesk, 3D Systems, and Faro Technologies).

The response for the conference was so overwhelming that it was quickly "sold out" but you can livestream the events on the 13th and 14th at the following link:


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

How We Spent Our Summer

If you follow our blog you may have noticed that we didn't post anything the second half of the summer. 

It was an incredibly busy time for us at Direct Dimensions. Our staff was criss-crossing the country to scan airplanes, buildings, historical artifacts, film sets and actors and attending conferences, leaving us little time to actually share news about what we were doing.

When we look back over our activities and projects it adds up to a really exciting couple of months. So in the spirit of those school essays we had to write every fall growing up - This is how we spent our summer:

1. Going to the Movies:
Some special effects scanning that we completed earlier in the year showed up in its final form this summer in The Smurfs 2 and Grown Ups 2. It's always fun to see our work on the big screen.

We also had staff working on-site at several locations for a few very exciting movies that are scheduled to come out next summer. Our engineers and technicians were absolutely blown away by the amazing sets, props and actors that we scanned.  We can't say much more than that yet, but make sure to check Direct Dimensions IMDB listing in the future to see all our upcoming projects.

2. Attended Our First Anime Con
This summer we took our ShapeShot system to Otakon (over 34,000 attendees!) where we scanned and printed 3D figurines of cosplayers. We scanned steampunkers, anime and manga characters and even Optimus Prime! These costumes are incredible and the people that create them are artists. It was such a great experience and we hope we get to do it again next summer.

3. Going to the Museum
Our summer was jam-packed with museum activities and projects. We scanned components for several major pieces for a few of our artist clients, scanned historical sculptures and artifacts held in museum collections and are actually part of an exhibit called "3D Revolution" created by Science Visualization.

4. Enrichment Activities
When we weren't traveling all over the country for scanning projects we were attending conferences to teach, learn and talk about about 3D scanning and printing. Major conferences attended included the 3D Printing Conference, Rapid 2013 and CMSC.

5. Gearing Up For Football Season
So we didn't attend summer football camp (actually, company President Michael Raphael did attend Ravens' training camp for a day)- but we did scan beloved Baltimore Raven Jonathan Ogden. Ogden was inducted into the Hall of Fame this year and we were excited and honored to digitally document him for posterity. Go Ravens!

Looking back we had a great summer and this fall and winter are also bringing more amazing projects, events and conferences that we are excited to share.


Monday, November 4, 2013

Michael's Latest Column: Laser Scanning Museum Sculpture for Three-Dimensional Research

Direct Dimensions' President and founder, Michael Raphael, is a regular contributor to LiDAR News. LiDAR News is a fantastic newsletter dedicated to all things 3D scanning and LiDAR. As an industry expert with over 20 years of experience, Michael regularly shares his thoughts on the state of 3D (scanning and printing) and also frequently discusses up and coming applications for 3D scanning.

From his latest piece :
Three-dimensional scanning technologies have been utilized in industry for over twenty years but are increasingly used in many other fields.  One of the exciting, perhaps unanticipated, uses of 3D measurement tools has been their adoption by museums for sculpture conservation, research, and interactive exhibits.
3D scanning is a perfect fit for documenting museum pieces.  Museums, for example, typically have pieces that cannot or should not be touched, yet present tremendous opportunity for study, documentation, interactive presentation, or for scaled or one-to-one reproductions.  The great news is that with a single 3D scan, all of the above can be achieved without direct physical contact with the original work of art.

Click here to continue reading  Laser Scanning Museum Sculpture for Three-Dimensional Research.