The 3dtotal anatomy figure range has proved to be an invaluable resource for artists worldwide. Meet the production team behind the exceptional quality, and find out how they're made...
Ownage Ltd began production 15 years ago as a pet project to create custom, high-quality action figures from artists' game characters. Back then, 3D printing was how we think of self-driving cars today; an exciting technology that everyone has heard a lot about, but no one really has access to. As Ownage delved deeper and deeper into the medium, the potential became apparent. "We realized that a lot of artists, game studios, and movie companies needed these services. Ownage grew on the back of this through word of mouth."
Currently, they have a full-time staff of about fifty. They do 3D prints, produce resin kits, and craft hand-painted artwork for various artists and studios across the internet.
Our new head is breaking the mold
3dtotal's primary contact, known simply as 'Des', has been a joy to work with over the years. But his job is multifaceted. "Sometimes I'm coding. Sometimes I'm art directing or painting. Sometimes I'm cleaning the gunk between the buttons of people's keyboards with Q-tips and Windex. You'd be surprised at the stuff that grows in there. People should really wash their hands more often."
Variety of projects
Technically, Ownage is an art services company for artists. Des enjoys the variety of projects that they get to work on. "It's an interesting market to serve because artists tend to be perfectionists or have OCD. Like being a chef for other chefs. It really pushes one's mindset, being able to jump from one project or one style to another. I'm still humbled by all the cool stuff people think up. I like figuring out how to make things work. My sister would say that's part of my Myers-Briggs personality profile, but I think it's in the default nature of every person... to be curious."
From conception to birth
An artist creates their concept; they've done the hard part, right? Now they want to see and feel the real thing in their hands. Every 3D artist dreams of holding their work, of the tangible, seeing it come to life. Ownage make it possible, working with the artist to ensure the feasibility of their 3D print. "We have to look at each project and figure out what the end product is going to be. Is it a one-off art-piece? Can it be shipped without breaking? Is it going to be molded and cast in resin, plaster, porcelain, metal? Is it going to be a mass produced PVC toy that needs to be engineered for a lot of intricate smaller parts?"
"When the artwork is all put together... you scream, "It's ALIVE!!!" and laugh maniacally until you pass out"
Once the file is in, the team will take a look and engineer the original artwork to get it ready for the long journey of becoming "Real Life Stuff" ™. "We mostly tell people to get their artwork how they want it to look, and we'll work with them to take care of the rest. Because when it comes to the nitty gritty of engineering and production planning, people tend to fiddle with parameters like sizing, wall thickness, cuts, pegs and keying in sub-optimal ways that might be good for getting cheap prints from Shapeways, or for printing a model at home, but aren't ideal when manufacturing professionally due to the differences of industrial equipment, and workflows of large production teams."
Now the file is ready, printing can begin. "Our finishing team will cleanup and assemble the print parts into the original artwork. We use a type of hybrid printing here that uses many types of different machines, technologies, materials, and traditional sculpting. So the final pieces require a bit of Dr Frankenstein work to get them all merged in a seamless way. Then when the artwork is all put together... you scream, "It's ALIVE!!!" and laugh maniacally until you pass out."
What about us? How much of a pain are we to work with? "3dtotal puts a lot of detail into their anatomy figures. The challenge mainly is making sure all those muscle fibers and tendons that are sculpted in the original 3D model make it into the final product... both from a 3D printing standpoint, and from a mass production standpoint."
"The prints themselves usually take 2 weeks to finish. Production timelines depend on the size of the run. Pre-paints can take awhile because I tend to get really hands-on with painted artwork, trying to find the best possible look for each piece and then finding ways to replicate that efficiently on many, many copies."
Ownage Ltd produces exceptional, high quality models, and as anyone who has bought one of our figures would say, I'm sure you would agree.
"A great anatomy figure! Excellent proportions and size, high quality material, good details, nice color. Not very long in delivery. My friends was impressed, I recommended them to buy."- Customer review
Check out our range of figures here.