Scaled Fish Design

I’ve been thinking of doing designs that have more rough textures and edges. I want to see how far I can push the sandstone printer that I have been doing my designs with. I came up with the idea of doing a fish and then making the fish scales in different shaped parts. The scales would be layered on the body at different angles.

fishscales

The first version used skewed rectangles for the scale shapes. I used the Blender shrinkwrap modifier to help with the placement of each scale. The design looked good but I wanted to see if I could make the scales more interesting.

I played around with the various Blender tools including face duplication and came up with something more dramatic.

fishbigscales

Since the scale placement was done automatically by Blender, I didn’t have enough control over how the front and back edge of the fish are shaped. Some of the scales were overlapping in weird ways. I tried to do some manual editing but couldn’t quite get it right. Another thing a tried was to generate one half of the fish shape and then mirror the body, but that also did not look quite right.

I decided to make another version by manually placing each of the scales. But I wanted to keep the dramatic look that the bigger fish scales have.

fishbigscales2

The design came out very good, but the cost of printing it would be too high. All those thick fish scales add up to a lot of volume which means a lot of material would be needed for the final printed model. So I’ve put this design on hold for now.

I went back to the first design and added more detail like eyes and some fins on the bottom to make the model stand on a flat surface.

fish

This version will be going to the printers.

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