More technical and creativity control in-house for stand designs, models, prototypes and tooling jigs
Embracing 3D printing technology means even the most technically and creatively challenging aspects of a job can be controlled in-house without compromising on the solution. 3D printers contribute to many aspects of Flow Creation’s work; examples include 3D printed display pieces, models, tooling jigs, assembly parts and prototypes
“As a business, our projects can really vary so a tailored and bespoke approach is essential to how we work. Embracing 3D printing technology means even the most technically and creatively challenging aspects of a job can be controlled in-house without compromising on the solution. 3D printers contribute to many aspects of our work; examples include 3D printed display pieces, models, tooling jigs, assembly parts and prototypes.”
Sam Robins, Managing Director & Founder of Flow Creation
Flow Creation – Introduction
Flow is a design studio/maker-space with a wealth of experience across exhibition and experiential design. They bring innovative & creative solutions to various temporary/permanent spaces across multiple sectors. Our ethos is based around a hands-on approach, embracing new technology and pushing boundaries. Flow’s work encompasses a broad range of disciplines including Interior Design, Paper-craft, Woodwork and 3D Printing. Working as a small team we take briefs, we create original concepts and we love to collaborate with agencies, brands and fellow creatives. We also have a great network of freelancers we work with to deliver projects seamlessly. Our beginnings in the exhibitions industry have given us great insight. We listen to our clients and get right to the heart of what they want their audience to experience. We use our passion for the aesthetic, practical knowledge and creativity to come up with fresh and unique installations, exhibition stands and bespoke pieces that make events and spaces come alive. Working right through every detail from the initial concept to making and installing, we’ve got it covered.
We designed an exhibition stand with moving artwork to celebrate 170 years of paper making by James Cropper. The hexagonal pattern represented 6 generations of the James Cropper family and acted as a strong design theme. We wanted the final design to pull visitors in from the show floor so we set about adding movement and scale to the stand in the form of a kinetic installation made up of strips hexagons based on the pattern used around the stand; each strip was controlled by a servo motor and needed to be fixed in place with bespoke components. In addition to this, the client wanted to display 250 hexagonal luxury paper samples for potential clients to take away. This needed to work with the design and the moving sculpture as it was to occupy the same space. As the paper samples were not a standard shape & size; we needed to create a custom holder that would showcase the product and also be strong and functional.
For the moving installation we designed and manufactured custom part 3D printed parts to link the motor to the moving strips of hexagons. For the paper samples, we came up with an interlocking design made up of 125 individual hexagonal-shaped holders which could be configured to suit the space. These were designed and 3D printed in-house using the Ultimaker.
Being able to design & manufacture bespoke elements in-house meant we were able to create a strong, functional piece that also really showcased the products. The moving wall art really drew people into the space and the custom-made sample holders encouraged interaction. They also looked amazing as one layered piece made up from the 3D printed interlocking shapes.
Cost and Savings
3D printing allowed us to make savings of at least 90% on this part of the job, compared with the time and subsequence costs of having them handmade from acrylic or injection moulding. We also had the luxury of being able to leave the machine to do the work once the design was final.