MINNEAPOLIS & REHOVOT, ISRAEL — Stratasys Ltd. reports that its customer, special effects company Artem Ltd., overcame traditional design challenges to create highly realistic miniature houses and shells for Zoopla’s “Crab World” TV campaign. The studio employed Stratasys’ multi-material, multi-color 3D printing technology to complete the job.
Artem was tasked with creating small, highly realistic models for the commercial. Using Stratasys' multi-color, multi-material 3D printing capabilities, over 20 realistic model homes and 10 crab shells were produced. The spot was created for UK property Website, Zoopla, and was shot on a beach in Costa Rica. It features numerous hermit crabs moving into shells topped with miniature houses. All the shells and houses were 3D printed using Stratasys’ multi-color, multi-material 3D printing capabilities.
Simon Tayler, owner, creative director and designer at Artem Ltd., says, “From the beginning, I knew this was a job for 3D printing. It would have been impossible to achieve the level of realism required with conventional, hand model-making.”
Accuracy was essential; the production team had large ambitions to convince real-life hermit crabs to inhabit the 3D printed shells for the duration of filming.
“We were keen to do all we could to ensure that these shells weren’t rejected and would not harm the crabs,” continues Tayler. “With Stratasys’ multi-color, multi-material 3D printing, we were able to mirror every curve, bump and nook of a shell’s natural shape, including the interior.”
Using scans of shells obtained on-site in Costa Rica, Tayler and his team produced the high-quality 3D shell models using Stratasys’ tough Digital ABS material. In total, the team produced over 20 model houses for the top of the shells, comprising of numerous different shapes and sizes. Each model mirrors an architectural style currently popular in the UK, from townhouses to country cottages. The models were no bigger than a match box.
“With 3D printing, we could work with minute details like individual tiles or roof or brick texture that was only 30mm across without losing any element of realism,” says Tayler. “Thanks to the capabilities of the Stratasys Connex3 3D Printer and respective materials, each house was 3D printed in an impressive 16-micron resolution for incredible accuracy.”
Tayler and his team had one month to design and produce the models for the shoot. According to the team, the elaborate production needed technology that could deliver a realistic product in a strict time frame. The 3D printed models were produced within an extremely short-lead time thanks to Stratasys’ color, multi-material professional 3D printing solutions.