ADAM SHEFKI – PROJECT PORTFOLIO
HERE’S THE ELEVATOR PITCH:
I’m a former-attorney-turned-maker who moved to California from New Jersey in March of 2019. I have been making original and replica props under the aegis of Fused Creations since early 2014. My passion for this kind of creative work grew to eclipse my interest in practicing law, so I retired my license in 2019 and moved west to pursue a career in LA’s creative industry.
I’m very familiar with 3D printing and modeling, I’m handy with electronics. I know my way around molding and casting projects. I’m decent at graphics design and video editing work, I know enough web design to put this bullshit together, and boy do I have a head for wigs. If that’s not enough to sell you on me, I’d invite you to browse some of my other information and a sampling of a few of the projects I’ve worked on below.
This project was part of an installation at the Dreamforce 2019 Convention in San Francisco, C.A., and was completed during my time withFlix FX, Inc.
I was responsible for the design, building, and installation of a set of internally-illuminated 'trees' that would interface with a game running on the electronic dancefloor, which was produced by another vendor. The trees had approximately 2,000 individually-addressable LEDs each that needed to be responsive to the events happening on the floor, including animation and color changes as the game playing out on the floor progressed. I personally worked with the outside team producing the Unity app running the dancefloor animations in order to establish a signaling protocol via DMX, which allowed for the trees to 'talk' to each other and receive sequencing instructions for these effects. After devising these protocols, I wrote the necessary code for all of the animation and lighting effects and extensively programmed approximately two dozen Arduino units. I was responsible for soldering, wiring, and otherwise producing many hundreds of meters of cabling, plugs, and other electrical components that were ultimately installed within the trees. Each tree was produced around a Sonotube concrete form, which allowed them to be slipped on and off of rented structural box truss without needing to be permanently attached, and the 'brains' of these units were installed behind removable maintenance hatches at the base of each tree trunk.
I was also involved in the creation and production of digital plans showing our proposed arrangement of the tree trunks, canopies, canopy lighting, and other structural truss elements. I refined these plans to the point where we were able to submit them to an engineer for review and approval prior to the installation of the exhibit in San Francisco.
I was ultimately part of the team that personally travelled to San Francisco to install this project at Dreamforce 2019.
This project was for E3 2019, and I worked on it during my time as part of the fabulous team at Thingergy, Inc.
The majority of my effort was focused on the male character - Troy - and his robotic arm and sword. Using the lower-poly assets provided by the game developer, I remodeled the arm as a high-poly asset that could then be sliced up and printed in multiple large sections by our available 3D printers. Special consideration was given to ensure that the arm could be assembled around the aluminum armature we had designed, and channels were carved out of the model for routing wires and lights.
The blade of Troy's sword was initially milled as a negative in EPS, and fiberclass copies were pulled from those negatives. Again, I took low-poly assets and remodeled them in significantly greater detail to fit around these fiberglass components. I left sockets on the parts I remodeled so that clear acrylic could be inserted and edge-lit down the length of the sword blade.
As with the Vault Hunter Statues project, the body forms for these characters were milled out of EPS foam in multiple pieces and sculpted over by professional artists. In Troy's particular case, I had to remodel and adapt the design of the interface and plating around where his shoulder and torso meet the robotic arm. I worked with Troy's body sculptor to ensure a tight fit on the seams between the character's flesh and the metal components.
On both characters, I was involved in replicating a number of smaller components like bullets, buttons, belt buckles, and other detail pieces. Each statue's hair was remodeled from the low-poly game mesh and the final 3D printed parts were mounted over the cast heads.
This project was for E3 2019, and I worked on it during my time as part of the fabulous team at Thingergy, Inc.
Using the basic game models provided by the developer, and working in tandem with another digital artist, I was responsible for milling the body forms for each statue out of EPS foam in multiple pieces. This foam shell was then hard-coated, and a team of professional sculptors were responsible for adding additional texture and detail on any bare or visible areas of skin on each character. I also worked closely with the shop's welder and engineer to ensure that all necessary dimensions and measurements of the models' internal armatures were provided for fabrication.
I modeled and was responsible for 3D printing portions of these characters. This ranged from various small components (clasps, buckles, bullets, and so forth) to substantially larger items, such as entire body parts of some characters. More significantly, I was involved in extensively modeling / remodeling of each character's weapons. The developer provided base 3D models as a reference which I then refined into high-poly, manifold, and printable components. Throughout the course of all of this work, attention was given to ensure that any components that required lighting or other inset details had proper cutouts for wiring or armatures /supports. I wired and soldered a number of these illuminated components.
I was hired for this project as part of a student film at a local university. The director brought his rough monster sketches to us with descriptions of some of the scenes planned and criteria for fabrication. After negotiating and preparing the contract for the job, I started work with a talented physical sculptor on the production of a number of these masks.
I took comprehensive measurements of the actor to ensure a snug fit on the mask dimensions and roughed the sizes and shapes out onto a head mannequin. Working with the sculptor, I helped refine a clay master sculpt of the monster head that met the director's approval. I assisted in the creation of a two-part plaster mold around the master sculpt. I cast multiple copies of the mask out of RD-407 rubber. The teeth were sculpted out of semi-transparent Sculpey and baked, then airbrushed around the base. They were firm but flexible in order to ensure the actor would not have any issues with wearing the larger fangs. They were installed with E6000 flexible adhesive into sculpted sockets along the jawline.
One mask was airbrushed with a mix of rubber cement, naptha, and oil paint, while the other was painted with a mix of Pros-Aide and acrylics. This was done as a test of both methods on the flexible latex, and also to afford the director a choice of finish and sheen on the mask to be used.
Due to the budgetary restrictions on this project, we needed to come up with a cheap and easy way to cover the rest of the actor. The director wanted a visible texture on the monster's skin, so we agreed to try making a number of thin textured latex sheets. The physical sculptor I worked with produced a large 24" x 24" textured clay panel, which we molded in plaster. We then tinted and poured numerous thin layers of RD-407 rubber onto this plaster master, which we were able to peel off in large sheets. On the day of filming, the performer had these textured sheets affixed with body-safe Pros-Aide adhesive, which were then trimmed, seamed, painted and blended.
The final edit of the film is available for you to enjoy on Vimeo.
A commission project for a client to recreate the "Antiquated Murgleis" sword and magical focus orb (listed separately here) from the online game Final Fantasy XIV.
The low-poly model was ripped from the source game and used as a reference. The entire sword was remodeled in high poly detail for 3D printing in multiple parts. Our client didn't want any kind of metal reinforcement inside the sword, because they were concerned about being stopped at conventions or other events by security or metal detectors. This made figuring out assembly a bit of a challenge, as I didn't have access to a 3D printer big enough to do the blade as a solid part. Ultimately, I ended up printing the sword in multiple sections that could fit on my smaller print bed, and ran a trio of carbon fiber rods up the spine of the blade to help keep the parts aligned and stable. Even despite this, I ended up fiberglassing the sword blade to make sure that it'd be durable enough to hold up to being swung around a bit.
The parts for the hilt and quillions were modeled with interlocking key-and-socket designs to make sure that each component was oriented correctly. These were also fitted with carbon fiber rods to help reinforce and stablize the core of each section.
For finishing, I worked with a professional painter who helped me airbrush the glow effect onto the blade, and also picked out wrought-iron highlights on the front shield and quillions with a bit of careful drybrushing.
This orb pairs with the Antiquated Murgleis sword listed separately here, because it was essentially a project all by itself. The design of the orb calls for it to be a number of floating elements that suspends itself above the magic user's outstretched hand. I opted for a combination of 3D printed components and clear acrylic supports to achieve a similar look.
The basic orb model has a central component and two 'wings' that seem to float, suspended, on either side. Modeling all of the baroque detail was certainly time-consuming, but it was significantly harder to figure out how to correctly orient these parts in such a way that I could paint and assemble them around the clear acrylic supports without a colossal headache. I cut these supports on my K40 laser engraver so that they'd precisely fit into channels and slots built into the model.
I also slightly modified the orb design to accommodate a clear acrylic rod that ran vertically through the entire piece. I added two discs at the bottom of the rod, such that a hand could be slipped between them to hold the orb upright without visibly gripping the support rod. In order to add to the appearance of the client using 'magic' with the orb, I designed a circular glyph that incorporated the Red Mage icon from Final Fantasy XIV, and laser-engraved that onto the top disc that sits on the palm. This was spraypainted with a flourescent red paint, and then sanded/buffed back, leaving the red only in the recessed lines. I also laser-cut the side red 'glyph' inserts that go on the larger, upper wing so that it could be painted easier, rather than trying to mask the complex shapes with tape.
I designed a thematically appropriate display base that the grip could be socketed into, and added tabs to help hold the disc down as necessary. This was printed hollow and then filled with lead shot and resin to give it sufficient weight to counterbalance the orb suspended above it.
A slightly loose reproduction of Star Lord's blaster from the original Guardians of the Galaxy movie. This prop was based off a Nerf gun shell, and early on I decided that I wanted to have a blaster that could still 'fan out' and open up. In my mind, it wasn't hard to envision this as an 'overheated' mode - something you could easily imagine Chris Pratt's take on Peter Quill having a comedic relief moment with. In order to make this work, I designed and 3D printed hinge mounts that would keep the gun fairings perpendicular as they popped up and backwards.
I built up the fairings on the top and bottom of the gun with Bondo and scribed the panel lines and other details I wanted back into them as I went. These got painted with an oxidized fade effect towards the nozzle end of each barrel to better match the screen-used prop.
On the electronics front, I carved out a space for a 9V battery that would be easy enough to replace. I found space behind the dual triggers to put simple tactile switches for firing the lights and sound effects I wanted, and was able to find a pair of oval speakers online that were the perfect shape and profile to tuck into the barrels I had designed. A set of RGB LEDs was installed in each barrel, along with some sanded acrylic to diffuse the light, and an Arduino micro-controller and sound board were built into the handle. For authenticity's sake, I was able to dig up the blaster sound effects from Star Lord's files in the old Marvel Heroes video game, which I set the Arduino up to choose from at random when the trigger was pulled. The start-up and overheating sound effects were courtesy of Ghostbusters, because, well, why not?
A commission project for a client to recreate the mask and cane of the character 'Elias' from an anime called The Ancient Magus Bride (or Mahō Tsukai no Yome).
The mask was 3D modeled with reference to various images from the anime for accurate scale and proportions. The horns were designed to be bolted onto the interior of the skull and were intended to be removable for shipping to the client. The total span of the horns from tip-to-tip when assembled was approximately 44 inches.
The mask incorporated a fan system built into the snout to keep the wearer comfortable. The mask also included light-up eyes to emulate the look of the character in the anime. The electronics were all controllable from switches on the back of the helmet, which controlled light intensity, fan speed, and optional eye blinking patterns. The entire suite was powered by a Lithium Polymer battery also embedded in the nose of the mask. All of these devices were taken into consideration during the design and modeling process, with necessary carve-outs for wiring or components.
The mask included a ratcheting head strap arrangement installed into the helmet for comfort and wearability. The red drape behind the head was sewn to fit.
For finishing work, I covered the skull portions of the mask in a truck bed liner paint to add a 'bony' surface texture that would be reasonably durable. I then airbrushed and painted the skull and horns. Black speaker fabric was installed over the eye holes, behind the LEDs, to help disguise the wearer while permitting good visibility out through the mask.
I also modelled the character's bespoke cane, which was 3D printed in woodfill PLA. It was then sanded, stained, and sealed after being attached to an oak dowel.
This project was my entry for NYCC 2016's costume contest. Using reference images from the film, I did my best to recreate the wardrobe of the film's antagonist, Immortan Joe.
The torso armor was made by heat-forming clear PETG over metal roman armor. The arms, which had muscles modeled into the armor design, were reproduced by 3D modeling the armor shapes, printing them out, making a mold of the parts and recasting them in plaster, then vacuum-forming PETG over the resulting bucks.
The medals and car emblems were 3D modeled with reference to stills from the film and cross-referenced against the actual car parts where identifiable. They were then 3D printed, molded, and cold cast in various metals. The belts, shins, robes, and airbag behind the head were hand-sewn out of leather and heavy canvas.
The mask was 3D printed, with extra details sculpted, then molded, cast, and painted. The mask I produced featured a working jaw that could open and close by way a pair of soldered brass rails added behind the teeth. I added a working air circulation system to the costume by way of a number of fans wired to controls behind my head in the airbag, which blew air through the hoses and into the mask. I also added a voice modulator and loudspeaker system to the costume to make sure I could be heard more easily while wearing the mask.
Ultimately, this costume landed me 2nd place in NYCC 2016's 'armor' division and was a tremendously enjoyable experience to work on.
I got asked to model the Ebon Flintlock pistol from the game Sea of Thieves for Thingergy, Inc.. Reference images were sparse, and unfortunately I wasn't able to rip any of the models out of the game to use as a base, so I free-modeled it from the few screenshots I was provided. This ended up being a bit challenging because I didn't have any straight-on views of the weapon, so I had to keep checking and re-checking proportionality.
The client did not want or need any moving parts on this gun, but requested that I separate pieces out by color so that the model could be more easily printed and assembled. I broke the parts down, including things like the gems on the handle and the individual pins that went through the gun to secure the flint and barrel into place. I wasn't sure if they were going to be resin- or FDM-printing this model, so I set up files that could be used for either production method.
The pistol was intended for Twitch streamer Summit1G, so at their request a copy of his logo was recessed into both sides of the barrel. The finished flintlock pistol pictured here was resin-printed and painted over at Thingergy.
This was meant to be a recreation of the plot Macguffin from the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie. I 3D printed all of the major parts and tested various ways of finishing them, including spray painting, Rub n' Buff wax metallic finish, and making cold-cast copies with metallic powder. Ultimately, the cold cast copies were my favorite, mostly because the weight the finished item had made the orb feel a bit more authentic. I also modeled the triangular electromagnet that Star Lord uses to capture the orb at the beginning of the movie for use as a display base for the finished product.
I went into this project with the goal of embedding an 'infinity stone' inside the orb that would light up. Making the stone was actually one of the easiest parts - I simply found a rock in the gravel outside my workshop that looked reasonably full of galactic power, then made a quick mold of it and recast it with a hint of purple dye. The lighting effects were produced by illuminating the stone from underneath with 3 purple LEDs. The LEDs were driven by a small Arduino micro-controller, which I programmed to fade the individual light sources in and out with a random 'stormy' pattern. The cast stone had a small magnet embedded in the bottom that secured the stone down onto a screw-post on one half of the orb and held it in a good position for the lighting effects, and I ran the on/off wiring to a small slide switch embedded around the rim of the same side. Power was supplied via a simple A23 battery, which the Arduino was able to step-down and utilize, and which was also relatively easy to change and replace at something like a convention. A set of magnets were installed around the rim of both halves of the orb to help keep the finished product properly closed.
If I were to do this project again, I'd probably build a reed switch in on the rim of the orb that turned the lighting on when it was opened and off when closed. I'd probably also use a rechargeable LiPo battery instead of the A23, as it'd last far longer and wouldn't require the orb to be disassembled when the battery gets low.
A quick item that got thrown together for a friend to wear to Blizzcon. I pulled the low-poly models out from World of Warcraft as a reference, but the underlying geometry was very limited due to that game's art style. The model was significantly rebuilt using the low-poly as a reference, and was scaled against a 3D scan of my own head to ensure it'd be relatively wearable. The tusks and lower jaw were separated off to make the parts printable on my Makergear M2, though I would have preferred to do the face as a single unified part.
The parts were printed and assembled, and coated with XTC-3D to help smooth out any seams and reinforce the mask. It was then fully sanded, and a layer of truck bed coating aerosol was sprayed over the mask to add a faux-bone texture. I went back in and did a quick pass with an airbrush and some washes to establish a base color, but the final painting and finishing was left to the client so that it would be cohesive with the rest of their costume.
This was done as a personal project - a gift for a Secret Santa event - and was intended to tie-in thematically to a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure game that both I and the recipient were fans of. I decided to make a bronze statuette of the story's main character, a Herculean-styled monster hunter named Enkidel. If you're interested in learning more about the context of this character, I wrote a brief summary here.
In the interests of time, I started this model by using the "Hercules" character from Smite as a base. Using 3D Studio Max, I refined the underlying body shapes into something a bit closer to what I wanted. I modeled up a few items of armor and weaponry for the character that were more consistent with the author's descriptions, including Enkidel's monster-bone club. Using some rudimentary rigging tools I was able to pose the character leaning on his weapon in the casual, just-killed-a-baddie posture I had in mind.
Initially, I was planning on making an entire diorama of Enkidel standing triumphant over a slain sea monster. I modeled the scene out, incorporating a base with ruined rubble columns and the monster in question. I ultimately felt that didn't have enough time to print, finish, and paint something of that scale, so I ended up dialing the idea back to simply a cold-cast statue of the character on a base. This saved me the trouble of painting, as I could simply polish and weather the finished piece.
The character model was printed on my Peopoly Moai in resin. I incorporated a photogrammetry-scanned base and also resin-printed that item after making a few cutouts to fit the character's feet and weapon correctly. These parts were primed, sanded, and sealed, then molded using Mold Star 20T. The models were recast in Smooth-Cast 326 with bronze powder, then polished to a high shine. I tried a few finishes, including an antiqued effect and the use of an actual oxidizing patina, but ultimately I liked a simple pass with Rub N' Buff Black metallic polish, which helped bring out some of the details and highlights.
This project aimed to create a thematically-appropriate set of streaming overlay graphics for players to use in Fallout 4 / Fallout 76. I started by exporting a number of environmental assets from Fallout 4, along with their accompanying texture maps. After exploring the available files and working out the general aesthetic I wanted to pursue, I began to render out these assets in 3D Studio Max at a fixed scale and perspective. I then took these renders into Adobe After Effects and began to create and layer animated components into discrete visual 'blocks' that could be arranged in a multitude of ways. By doing this, I ended up with a fairly modular set of graphical assets that I could provide to streamers, who could then arrange them in whatever fashion best suited their individual stream's needs. These components were exported into .webm and other motion formats and organized by function and style. I also animated a number of additional assets for use as pop-up notifications or other forms of stream feedback. These included brief intro/exit animations of the Vault Boy character and Eyebots.
After the streaming assets were produced, I decided to have a bit of fun by creating an 'in-universe' style advertisement for them. I studied a number of Bethesda's promotional cartoons and attempted to emulate their general art style and aesthetic in my own animation, the majority of which was done in After Effects. I did some limited destructive audio engineering in Adobe Audition to both the background music and recorded voice-over to make the video feel more authentic.
A prototype / replica of Officer K's badge from Blade Runner 2049. It is shown on a few occasions throughout the film, and features an appropriately cyberpunk screen opposite a relatively conventional LAPD badge.
The badge was 3D printed in resin, cured, and cleaned up for molding. I made a simple open-face mold and pressure-cast Mold Max 30 at around 60 PSI, then poured a mix of Smooth Cast 326 and fine aluminum powder and put that back into the pressure tanks. I gave the badges a simple black wash and then polished the high points until they had a convincingly metallic shine.
Rather than try and cram a working screen into the limited space available, I went for using an iPhone backlight panel, which was almost the perfect size for what was required. The panels run off of 12V, so I used a tiny step-up voltage regulator and a pair of 3V coin cells to get enough juice for the lights. These parts all needed to be hidden inside the wallet, so I took a dremel and carefully carved away the channels and spaces I needed from the back of the cold-cast badge until I could tuck pretty much everything behind it.
The on-off functionality is controlled by a normally-open reed switch in conjunction with a small magnet tucked behind the screen on the opposite side of the wallet. When the wallet opens, the magnet moves far away enough for the switch to make contact again, and the screen is thus illuminated.
Another set of Fallout-themed assets aimed for use by streamers, this was designed to be a set of pre-show intro and outro animations to provide viewers with a bit of eye-candy. The video assets were created by exporting a number of models and textures from Fallout 4 and arranging them in 3D Studio Max to be animated. Lighting and other adjustments were made in the 3D environment, and the motions of both the vault and the camera were keyframed. These were then rendered out into image sequences and brought into Adobe After Effects for compositing. Smoke, dust, lens, and particulate effects were added to the rendered footage. The final assets were exported to .webm with alpha channels so that users could lay the video elements over top of their stream for effective use as transitions.
I happened to know one of the community managers who worked at Reloaded Games, which was the company that acquired the rights to the (now-defunct) game Hawken after its initial release under Meteor Entertainment. They wanted to do a few community streaming events, and requested that I produce a number of animated visual elements that they could use for that purpose.
I started by making a rough proof-of-concept layout inspired by the hangar environments in the game. Because a large focus of the game is building and modifying your personal giant robot, it seemed like a good jumping-off point. Because the game used Unreal Engine 3 as its base, I was able to use tools like UEViewer to rip some assets straight from the game's own files, including a number of the 'generic' hangar technician characters and their associated animations. I arranged these elements in 3D Studio Max in a way that would give a semi-isometric view of a hangar with the game's social media elements on the concrete floors and a column on the right side for player chat or other displays. I layered in a separate video background element for when/if no stream content was showing, so that there was always something visually engaging for viewers. Once these elements were arranged, they were rendered out into an image sequence and re-imported into After Effects so I could composite looping animations for lights, smoke, and other details like a repair drone that flies by infrequently.
While the hangar environment worked well for official community streams, there was a separate request for some visual elements individual players and streamers could use during gameplay. The actual battles take place with a cockpit-view UI, so I wanted to make something that felt like a relatively seamless extension of the various mech cockpits that existed in the game, while still providing chat, camera, and notification functionalities. I did a quick mock-up of various gauges, dials, and buttons, and then rendered that out as a static image. I brought that into After Effects and began the process of creating looping animations for individual elements in order to create visual interest. These assets were ultimately exported out as separate left- and right-side video elements (webm and mov) for use in streaming software like Streamlabs OBS.
A recreation of the knife used in the game series Titanfall to 'hack' consoles and other electronic hardware. These were produced as a limited run for sale to collectors.
The knives were designed with integrated electronic components- specifically, an arduino microcontroller driving RGBW LED lights and a piezo speaker for sound. A thumb button in the handle turns the knife on and off. A laser-etched and engraved display disc on the top of the handle strobes and flashes in an animated 'hacking' sequence when the knife is turned on. The knives were designed to incorporate a Lithium Polymer battery, and included a recharging circuit with a MicroUSB port by the blade. I was responsible for all of the code and programming that drives the animated sequences and sounds.
The knife itself was 3D modeled and printed. It was sanded and finished, and molds were made of all of the various components. The final products featured cold-cast aluminum blades, cold-cast brass circuitry inlays, and a cold-cast graphite handle.
Boxes were designed for the knives to be sold and shipped in. The box art was styled to be consistent with the 'military surplus' aesthetic of the Titanfall game, and included lore-relevant notices and warnings.
Twenty of these knives were produced and sold to collectors as a limited run. They were custom laser-engraved upon request with pilot names or other details, and included a laser-cut and engraved acrylic display stand.
I created a replica arc grenade from the game Titanfall. These are typically used by infantry to temporarily disable or blind enemy titans' sensors, and have a very visually interesting profile, almost resembling an underwater mine. For the version pictured, all of the parts were produced in PLA plastic.
The grenade was designed to use 18 WS2812 addressable LEDs (5mm). I soldered .1uF capacitors on each and strung them together in a manner similar to christmas lights. The whole assembly was powered by a simple 9V battery, with a 5v step-down regulator. The battery could be removed and changed by unscrewing the top handle from the body of the grenade itself. The data signals for the LEDs were driven by an Arduino Pro Mini, and a simple piezo buzzer was installed to provide audio effects for the crackling electric lights and 'explosion' animation. When activated, the grenade's lights surged blue in random electrical patterns on the exterior of the grenade; an arming button locked all of the LEDs red and began a countdown animation prior to detonation.
Since making this initial version, I have redesigned the Arc Grenade significantly, trading out the 9V battery for a rechargeable lithium-polymer version and also turning the top handle into a rotating on-off switch to 'prime' the grenade. A look at the revised design is available here.
The combatants in Titanfall wear these rocket boosters on their lower back to allow them to wallrun and parkour in the manner required to scale giant enemy robots. I designed a 3D-printable version of this kit with support for lights, sound, and other arduino-controlled elements.
I used a photogrammetry scan of myself as a scale reference while modeling the jump kit so that I could ensure that it would be approximately the right size for an adult. I modeled the kit to print in multiple parts, including inserts sized to fit standard Adafruit neopixel LED rings. The middle of the kit was modeled to fit a standard military battle belt wrapped around it vertically, and a number of tie points for MOLLE straps or other fabric attachments were incorporated so that the jump kit could hang properly. A hatch was built into the kit on the side facing the wearer's body to allow access to the electronics, battery, and any other components that might need attention. Each illuminated point on the kit was designed to have laser-cut acrylic dropped in to diffuse the LED lighting.
The finished jump kit pictured here was painted by my friend @fadedpilotprops for his own use.
After the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie came out, the value of these Walkmans skyrocketed. This made getting my hands on one basically impossible. Fortunately, I had 3D printers at my disposal, and a willingness to tinker.
The base shape of the Walkman was modeled and printed in PLA as a mostly hollow shell. I appropriated an old cassette tape, made a new label for it that matched what was shown in the film, and ended up cutting the cassette down to just the parts that would be visible through the front window of the Walkman. This left me with enough room to tuck a battery, sound board, and micro-controller into the body of the Walkman. A sizable speaker was mounted behind the front hole of one of the cassette reels so that the Walkman could share its jams without having to use headphones. Given that I did not have access to a laser cutter at this point in time, I opted to model and 3D print the "SONY" and "WALKMAN" text on the front of the device in PLA plastic, and then glued the letters on individually. The Walkman mainly was painted in an automotive metallic blue.
The buttons on the side of the device were used to control the music playback in a manner that you might expect - start, stop, next, previous. The orange button at the top of the Walkman was converted into a master on/off switch, and an LED was installed behind the top headphone jack to indicate if the device was powered or not. The final touch was simply to load the film's soundtrack onto the SD card connected to the micro-controller inside.
These headsets were made for clients who were heading to Blizzcon and decided they all wanted to all do different versions of the character DVa at what was essentially the last minute. While I would have normally liked to have made molds for these parts, especially if I'm making multiples of the same thing, there wasn't the time or budget for it. Instead, all of the parts got 3D printed, sanded, and coated with XTC-3D to help smooth them out.
The one part that did end up getting molded was the light-up insert that went on each ear. This part was printed to slot into the cavity on each side of the earpiece, and had holes for 5MM green LEDs. After cleaning up this U-shaped piece and making a mold of it, I cast a bunch of them in clear resin with some slight green pigment mixed in. They were then each sanded to help frost and diffuse the lighting better. Wiring for each ear's LEDs was installed and routed through a channel in the top headband of the headset. The LEDs were powered by some beefy 3V coin cells, which were chosen so that the clients could easily replace them as needed during the convention weekend. Both the battery and on/off switch were discreetly hidden inside the shells of the earpieces.
Bondo was used to help reinforce the joints and seams of each headset, and they were sanded down to the nicest finish that time allowed before painting. Each headset had a slightly different color scheme, as each one was intended to match a different version of DVa's outfit. The whole project was done in about 5 days, with most of the work being centered around getting the parts printed as quickly as possible.
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- Coordinated teams of fabricators and other craftspeople build complex projects for events, installations, and other entertainment productions.
- Engaged in extensive 3D modeling and digital design work to produce plans, schematics, layouts, graphics, and other needed assets for all ongoing projects.
- Programmed, wired, soldered, and fully produced multiple electronic elements including digital communications, lights (LEDs), and sound displays.
- Operated 3-Axis and 5-Axis CNC machinery to produce vacuum-forming bucks, retail displays, signage, and set design pieces.
- Modeled, designed, and printed a huge assortment of 3D parts. Nearly every project undertaken by the company involved some element of digital design and engineering, and I was involved with much of this work.
- Maintained, repaired, and upgraded a room of 14 different 3D printers that formed the backbone of the company's digital production. These machines ranged from consumer models to five-figure, high-volume industrial printers.
- Operated and maintained company's primary CNC router. I prepared models for milling and carved those forms out of foam, wood, and other materials on a nearly daily basis.
- Programmed and installed LED lighting, arduino, and other electrical components.
- Digitally designed, manufactured, and fabricated numerous costume, prop, or collectible items for both businesses and individual clients.
- Drafted and negotiated contract terms for services to be performed and managed creative projects with other artists and professionals.
- Created props and costumes for production and film through William Paterson University's Student Film Association.
- Prepared and reviewed client documents including business contracts, leases, service agreements, real estate transactions, estate planning documents, depositions, and property settlement agreements.
- Routinely and successfully represented clients in Civil, Family, and Municipal court appearances throughout the northern New Jersey area.
- Not even slightly what I'm interested in doing anymore, but listed here mostly so that you know I know how to run a business and I'm not afraid of responsibility.
... Also that I've got a closet full of suits I'm looking for an excuse to wear.
- 3D Studio Max
- Pixologic ZBrush
- Autodesk Netfabb
- Vectric VCarve
- ArtSoft Mach3
- Peopoly Asura
- Formlabs PreForm
- Autodesk Meshmixer
- Autodesk EAGLE
- Adobe Photoshop
- Adobe Illustrator
- Adobe After Effects
- Adobe Audition
- Adobe Premiere
- Adobe Media Encorder
- Arduino IDE
- OBS Studio / Streamlabs OBS
- Artec Studio
- 3DF Zephyr
- Makergear M2
- Creality CR-10S / S4
- Raise3D N2 Plus
- Ultimaker 3 Extended
- Lulzbot Taz 6
- Lulzbot Mini 2
- Makerbot Replicator 2
- Peopoly Moai / M200
- Formlabs Form 2
- 3DPlatform Workseries 100
- Avid CNC Pro4896 Router
- Shopbot 3-Axis and 5-Axis CNC Platforms
- K40 Laser Cutter / Engraver
- Universal Laser Systems PLS6.75
- Artec EVA 3D Scanner
- I've got a handle on basic mold-making skills and have regularly operated vacuum degassers, pressure pots, and similar equipment.
- I've had extensive experience with vacuum-formers and vacuum forming techniques, including designing effective bucks for these processes.
- I understand HTML, PHP, CSS, and other web-centric development to smash together this site in a mostly-functional way.
- I've worked with an assortment of photogrammetry software and have some experience using scanning and capture hardware on people and props.
- I have been toying with Photoshop and After Effects for years and have a pretty good foundation when it comes to image and video editing, manipulation, or compositing.
- Most importantly: I learn very quickly on my feet.
- Presidential Law Scholarship recipient all three years.
- Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, with a minor in History.