Monster class project spawns 3D-printed masks highlighting fears and phobias
Monsters such as Frankenstein, Freddy Krueger, and creepy clowns, plus imaginary monsters and the ones that haunt your dreams, spawned ideas for Sarah Fasco’s class project.
Thoughts of all these frights entered Fasco’s mind when she found out the theme of her Character Modeling with ZBrush class project was monsters.
“The instructions were pretty open-ended,” said Fasco. “We just had to stick to the theme of monsters and use the software, ZBrush, as part of our project. I was pretty excited! ZBrush is a software I hadn’t used before, so the theme 'monsters' gave me the ability to play around with it and not be worried about accuracy since monsters can look however you want them to look.”
Fasco quickly got to work. She recently had been hired at the University Libraries as a student employee in Newman Library’s 3D Design Studio, now Prototyping Studio, and took advantage of the library’s free resources. She had interest in 3D scanning, and she thought faces seemed like a fun and curious thing to scan. Combining that with 3D printing and the monster theme, she decided to make 3D-printed masks based on people’s fears and phobias.
“It was a really helpful and fun experience,” said Fasco. “Learning there was a 3D-scanning service was very important to the success of my project.”
A creative technologies major, Fasco said the mediums are what drew her in.
“I really enjoy 3D modeling as well as physical art, so this project was a combination of both in a really cool way. The technical aspect was really fun, and then I got to paint the mask after it printed and have a physical form to display, which is really cool and fun as well,” Fasco said.
She said the process of making the masks was actually quite simple. “The Prototyping Studio made it easy and has the tools and expertise to help you through every step of the process, and everything in the studio was new, exciting, and unfamiliar.”
It was challenging to make sure the artifacts modeled on top of people’s faces would print properly. “My first mask had creepy nails coming out of a person’s face, and that definitely wasn’t the best design choice,” Fasco said. “I was able to fix it with super glue, but it taught me that I needed to think more about how my digital designs would translate into a physical world.”
Wearable 3D-printed items are popular and trending. Combining the wearable aspect with using faces made Fasco’s project all the more intriguing. “My project is really cool because the masks are wearable and fit perfectly on a face,” said Fasco, who graduated in May. “Wearable 3D-printed items and using faces is unusual, and I love that it shows people that it’s possible to do really unique, versatile things with 3D printing, even if my project gives people the heebie-jeebies.”