Way back in 2010 I bought a copy of zbrush but forgot all about it when I fell out of love of effects and ran away to be an accountant. All that changed when a friend of mine showcased some of the results you can get by casting 3d prints.
Fortunately, the makers of zbrush have one of the best customer service policies ever, and I was able to get the latest version as ongoing support for my original purchase. Mercifully I had not entirely forgotten how to work the software and after a few evenings of tinkering around I had come up with a pretty pleasing design. After many years of trying to be a jack-of-all-trades and model, texture, rig, animate, render, and composite my projects, it was pretty liberating to only concern myself with form and ignore everything else.
3dsmith right here in Vancouver were able to realize my design to within 0.3mm as a print in resin.
The machines and process are pretty amazing (and worth a post in their own right some day) but the photo below clearly shows how they start out with a base and build up an armature to support the final result. The layers are printed so finely that you really can't see any banding in the surface of the object as its slowly built from the bottom-up.
Uscochi Manufactory came in to save the day with a combination of patience and very old but proven techniques. The "lost wax method" has been updated for the 21st century by allowing the print to serve in the place of wax which is then burned out after being cased in plaster to create a mold. Once the casting process was complete, I got to step in and learn how to saw, file, sand and buff the piece until it was shiny and complete as you see below.
Huge thanks to everyone involved in the process and I really look forward to having the time to do some more work in this vein. After a few years away I really enjoyed reconnecting with my creative skills and collaborating with friends to make some new and totally unique artwork that would survive a hard drive failure.