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The Ecuadorian Film Festival Turns to 3D Printing for Their Awards

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EFFNY Award

This is the seventh year of the Ecuadorian Film Festival, which was started in Washington, D.C. to promote Ecuadorian film, culture and food, and its inaugural year in New York. The mission of the festival is to encourage tourism and filmmaking in a country known for its sweeping vistas and breathtaking beauty; from the high mountain peaks of the Andes, to the verdant rainforest of the Amazon and the shores of that spectacular gem called the Galapagos Islands.

When Christian Ponce, the director of Ecuadorian Film Festival (EFFNY), brought the festival to New York to celebrate the achievements of Ecuadorian filmmakers, he needed a special venue, so he chose Tribeca Cinemas, home of the famous Tribeca Film Festival. He also wanted to do something unique for the festival’s awards, so he enlisted the help of artists Robert Cicetti and Gabriela Trueba to interpret their 2D logo into a 3D model. Cicetti and Trueba were also tasked with 3D printing the design, and partly due to the budget requirements of the project chose to print in FDM. They used natural ABS, because they really love the raw nature of the material. As Trueba notes, “Both Robert and I are obsessed with the natural ABS aesthetic and we thought it would give it an ivory look. We feel that ABS is the most simple and subtle material. We didn’t want to try to make it look like a plastic injection molded piece, but we wanted something raw and bold.” Cicetti added, “Natural ABS is the perfect material for highlighting the 3D printing process and the 3D printed look.”

EFFNY director Christian Ponce with the award.

EFFNY director Christian Ponce with the award.

The motto of EFFNY is “All You Need is Ecuador” and their logo is a patterned music box. Trueba and Cicetti interpreted the 2D design into a 3D cube with a removable and functional hand crank, with the motto engraved into the award’s base. The cube is rotated relative to the base into ¾ profile, just like in the original artwork. The prints came out surprisingly well, after some failed attempts. As anyone involved with 3D printing is well aware, prints love to fail at the most inopportune moments, especially at the eleventh hour when you’re sweating under a tight deadline. However the duo persevered and the final products are very impressive.

“The print took over 20 hours. Actually, the last print took 40 hours at 0.1mm and 10% infill. It was printed with our self designed and built Deltabot,” says Trueba, “We are really happy with the results, given all the internal supports we had to break with a small tool. We are excited to see more 3D prints used as the final product of the design process.”

The Ecuadorian Film Festival ran from June 17th until today, featuring many fine features and documentaries. Two awards will be presented at the end of the festival; Best Film Audience Award and Best Film Jury Prize. If Cicetti and Trueba’s work is any indication of what is possible with ABS, I think we’ll be seeing many more organizations turn to it for printing unique awards.

EFFNY Award

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