3D printing has gone on tour with Katy Perry’s Prismatic World Tour as Stratasys reveals its technology is behind some very vibrantly coloured 3D mohawks produced by leading Hollywood special effects company, Legacy Effects.
Inspired by the plume of an ancient Roman's imperial-centurion helmet, the mohawk's main structure is tailored to fit each of Katy’s backing dancers using Stratasys 3D printing and features striking colourful programmed lighting in the peak.
"When Katy Perry's art assistant gave us the brief with such a short turnaround time, we knew instantly that creating something so complex and visually striking, with the need for durability, could only be achieved with 3D printing," explains Jason Lopes, Lead Systems Engineer at Legacy Effects. "Traditionally, it's virtually impossible and very costly to produce such complex personalised pieces by hand, taking into consideration the time to work out the programming of the lighting elements. With Stratasys 3D printing technology, we were able to develop fully-illuminated pieces with a lightning fast turnaround of under a week. For developing one-off props for the music industry, this is revolutionary."
Legacy Effects opted to 3D print the outer crest in robust ABS-M30 FDM thermoplastic, ideal for holding the whole unit together and the inset of the mohawks was produced in Stratasys' rigid VeroGray material.
Lopes added: "We wanted to amplify the bright colours of the mohawks to complement the dance routine and lighting throughout the performance and we knew that PolyJet's ability to house a sheet of acrylic inside would ensure that the contrast in colours was emphasizsd regardless of the spectators' position in the arena.”
Gilad Gans, President of North American Operations, Stratasys, concluded: "We are seeing more and more of our customers using 3D printing beyond just a prototyping tool, but as a way to directly manufacture some of the most complex parts as final products. In the case of Katy Perry's head pieces, the ability to 3D print personalised one-off parts, customised to each dancer, is a perfect example of how the future of manufacturing is moving towards mass customisation."