David Project

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Pre napkin-sketch, pre-proposal.

Working Notes

These are working notes and partial nonsense. Please read, think, and edit, this is a wiki.

Idea: Scan in every art museum and archaelogical artifact. Everywhere, starting with the most accessibile, interesting, and mediagentic artifacts. E.g. The statue of David.

Should be straightforward, and then we have a nonprofit commons keep the files in trust (and GPL), on a website, for the next 1000 years or so. And have a dynamic community of users, like youtube.

I'd rather not trust Microsoft or Yahoo to be the gatekeepers to our 3D culture.

Non-GPL example

Scan of David with non-free data. Boingboing was all over this.

Raw Notes

Plaster casts are also a fundamental part of teaching artists in the traditional atelier model.

First you copy lithographs, say from the Charles Bargue book/drawing course (not cheap, but cheaper than an art class)

Then you copy from plaster casts, e.g.: http://www.ebisart.com/pg27.html http://www.conceptart.org/forums/showthread.php?t=3267 http://gurneyjourney.blogspot.com/2008/09/plaster-casts.html

Then you draw from the model: (omitted)

Then you paint/sculpt: (omitted, although lucchesi and lanteri are good on sculpture)

(Although it is fun to mix up the steps. But the teacher knows if she or he teaches this way, the student learns to where to put the lines before dealing with the plaster cast or model.)

This is a fun place to start: http://www.conceptart.org/forums/forumdisplay.php?s=f1fc40207933d4d8eda1fc6ad6d631bf&f=7

unless you have an atelier nearby: http://www.artrenewal.org/asp/database/atelier_list.asp Atelier are much cheaper than university art departments, but the students that come out make better art, I think.

Action Items

Build up background,


The casts were destroyed by barbarians. (Technically, hippies led by modernists. The modernists wanted to impose their own stamp on the course curriculum and created a moral crisis in order to do so. The hippies were angry about an un unjust war and thought 'the Man' was oppressing them by forcing them to draw.

Possibly unrelated from my original source text: (Maybe 10 years from now all the art schools that want will have as many casts as they can 3D print. I think I know what I'm doing on my next trips to art museums.) See also David_Project


Identify Problem

Describe available non-RepRap, non-GPL solutions which are not on the wiki, explain why they are unsuitable.

Analyze domain, identify community resources if they exist and experts.

Make Simple Model Using RepRap

  • This is a key step. If you walk into a prosthetic designer's workshop or a roboticist designer's workshop, you better have a physical simple non-working example, printed out with a RepRap. This will engage the designer's somatic sense, their professional instincts will kick in, and he or she will tell you why this won't work.
  • Lay out large sheets of paper.
  • Ask them to make a drawing explaining their criticism.
  • Scan sheets of paper.
  • Make new model.
  • Repeat. Go back to
  • This is a little sneaky, but will work. We will call it the Columbo method of getting started on a project.

Try to identify domain expert with proven ability to get things dones, solicit advice.

Optional: Create Working Group of advisors.

(Difficulty: No Talking-Shops)

Describe Solution

Identify Domain Expert with proven ability to get things done: "Bob'

Secure Funding to donate RepRap: RepRap Research Foundation funds, PayPal, DARPA or Non-Profits etc.

Bob uses RepRap to design solution, demonstrates, puts on RepRap wiki under GPL.

Use RepRaps to make solution, deploy 1000 examples.


After deploying working examples, alert media, preferably using RepRap Blog] and BoingBoing (Cory et.al. are nice people, and people read their blog. Plus, since it's a blog, they need content, so it's all good.)