I did not think it was possible to make it any more difficult for me to wait patiently for the arrival of my 3Doodler 2, but that was before I saw Grace Du Prez’s series of vases that were created using the printing pen. In fact, I had to get up just now to check my front door again. Sadly, it was just the garbage truck that I heard.
Grace Du Prez is a London based mixed media designer and maker who has worked on projects ranging from a hat made of mini-cheddars to a wider variety of hair and face accessories than you could probably imagine. Possibly even more impressive than the mini cheddars hat is one created entirely using the 3Doodler that was commissioned by Maplin Electronics to be worn at the Royal Ascot Ladies day in 2014. Known as The Peacock Hat, the production took about 60 hours and had to be completed within a week. This was her first time using the tool and she immediately took to it.
After graduation from Loughborough University in 2008 with a BA in Multimedia Textiles, she continued her studies at the Royal College of Art where she earned an MA in Mixed Media Textiles in 2010. She has worked with a wide variety of materials and is extremely adventurous in both type and technique. She is at home with accessories and has used them in her body of work as means to communicate ideas about the intertwining of ethics and aesthetics.
A writer from the 3Doodler blog recently caught up with Du Prez to talk more with her about her latest project. Naturally, they were interested in knowing more about what drew her to use the 3Doodler in the first place. Du Prez explained that she had been willing to start the several hundred-hour interaction because of the combination of hands on and modern technology wrapped up in the pen printing process.
“I’m always drawn to trying new materials and I love creating tactile surfaces, so when I was approached to do my first 3Doodler project I was really excited – it sounded like something I would really enjoy. My previous work has involved lots of surface design techniques including digital embroidery and fabric manipulation… It was really interesting to start working with plastic is a medium and exploring all the different effects you can create. I like that the 3doodler combines modern technology and yet is still very hands-on.”
Du Prez is accustomed to paying attention to the details. There is a tidiness to her work that speaks to her exacting techniques and her background in embroidery. In looking at her pieces I’m reminded of the quote attributed to Charles Eames, “the details are not the details. They make the design.” In addition to a highly trained eye and steady hand, she notes that it is important to pay attention to bodily comfort when that body is supposed to be producing something refined and flawless.
The 3doodler made vase she has just unveiled is a waterproof creation with the sparkle and texture of cracked glass. In her interview she described her process and plans:
“I just finished a vase that is totally waterproof. It’s made of multiple circular layers all joined together. It uses the same principle as a bracelet I previously made. I applied a clear silicon to the inside surface to make it watertight. It’s functional and the clear plastic looks really beautiful through the water. I’m currently working on lampshade design in two different colors… The designs will use lots of different tone colors creating a graduated effect.”
Like many artists she is bubbling with energy and filled to the brim with ideas.
“I’m always getting new ideas for projects and there are still lots of techniques I’d like to try!”
This is a designer to keep your eye on, if the past is any indication of the future she will create many more amazing things to look at. Let us know your thoughts on these incredible vases in the 3Doodled Vase forum thread on 3DPB.com.