Bernat Cuni first got the idea for Crayon Creatures when his 5-year-old daughter asked him to print her drawing. She and her 4-year-old brother created all of the drawings in this gallery.

3-D printing manufacturer Shapeways prints the sandstone figures.

"If you have a technology that allows you to make each piece different, there’s no point anymore to design a set design," Cuni says about his approach to 3-D printing design.

Cuni says he stays true to drawings when he translates them to 3-D--when his son drew a three-legged elephant, he printed a three-legged elephant.

Cuni says he stays true to drawings when he translates them to 3-D--when his son drew a three-legged elephant, he printed a three-legged elephant.

Cuni says he stays true to drawings when he translates them to 3-D--when his son drew a three-legged elephant, he printed a three-legged elephant.

Cuni says he stays true to drawings when he translates them to 3-D--when his son drew a three-legged elephant, he printed a three-legged elephant.

The Cute Economy: 3-D Print Your Child's Crayon Drawings With Crayon Creatures

Bookshelf art is the new fridge art with the help of a new online shop.

Accustomed to thinking of the family's 3-D printer as an "ATM of things," Benat Cuni's 5-year-old daughter asked him to print a crayon drawing she made of a dolphin. A couple of months later, he had launched a new store based on her request.

The store, Crayon Creatures, will turn any drawing into a sandstone 3-D sculpture. It's an extension of Cuni's 3-D printing studio Cunicode, which has also produced jewelry designs, a lampshade that when illuminated looks like the moon, and 30 designs for coffee cups created within 30 days. Children’s drawings, unique by their nature, fit right in.

3-D printing manufacturers such as Shapeways, the shop Cuni uses, make creating individual objects like the child-inspired figurines possible. Cunicode uses projects like Crayon Creatures to experiment with this relatively new capability.

“If you have a technology that allows you to make each piece different, there’s no point anymore to design a set design, to design something that is not going to change over time,” he says.

Crayon Creatures stays true to the drawings it translates into 3-D. Cuni printed a drawing of three-legged elephant, for instance, without adding a fourth leg. His 4-year-old son wasn’t impressed by the result. “He was a bit like, you didn’t fix it,” he says. “You made an elephant with three legs. It’s okay if I do it because I’m a kid.”

Adults tend to be more excited about the imperfect figurines, which each cost 99 euros. Considering that breakable sandstone works better for art than for toys, that might be all right.

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2 Comments

  • NadraAngerman

    Cool! But how will moms hang their kid's artwork on the fridge in the future? 

    Young artists might be inspired by this collection of work in the Contemporary Art Gallery at 2013 RAPID Additive Manufacturing Solutions Event. It's hosted by the Society of Manufacturing Engineers and sure to inspire all!  http://www.meetingproceedings....

  • RAPID Conf & Expo

    Society of Manufacturing Engineers invites artists to submit work created with this trendsetting new process (3D imaging and 3D printing). A selection of works will be on display in the Contemporary Art Gallery at the 2013 RAPID Additive Manufacturing Solutions Event. Learn more at http://www.sme.org/rapid or look for hashtag #RAPID2013 on Twitter.