3D printing design studios and 3D print shops are now popping up all over the world. Little wonder. On the back of a few years of global media coverage, the growing attention of design professionals, and the genuine realisation that 3D printing technologies are at a stage where end products, not just prototypes, can be produced at proportionately appropriate costs, the stage is set for the ongoing growth of the 3D printing industry. In South Africa, one such business is Rabbit, based in Cape town and offering a range of services from 3D scanning to 3D printing, design to consultancy.
Rabbit is, if you’ll excuse the obvious pun, hopping to show you the ways in which they can help your business — from conceptualisation of the design through to production; including rendering your ideas in glorious 3D. Essentially taking your premise for a new product line, or even just your customised birthday present for that special someone, and making it real. The team is comprised of keen minds that understand just how broad the range of applications for 3D printing is — as you can see from their gallery, it’s not just the emerging trend for 3D selfies that everyone and their aunty are jumping on board with. Rabbit also has experience with fashion – from ties to necklaces; product peripherals; artwork; textile design; cute models of movie merchandise (beware copyright infringement 3D print fans…) and more, all in their portfolio.
The said team includes dynamic directorate duo Harry and Marc Ravelomanantsoa, who cite experience with product realisation and technology, business and sales; technical designer Nathan Miller, the company’s CAD, conceptualisation and problem solving specialist; and last but not least Ruby Coullie, who traces her roots to fashion design and illustration and cites experience with research, design and sales. Alongside the very serious side of making musings manifest into the material they also have an uncanny talent for levitation. Maybe.
The quantum defying quartet offer the application of their 3D scanning, modelling and printing talents to the art and design, architecture, film and entertainment, fashion and jewellery, toys and general consumer sectors. Pretty much what we would anticipate to find a business in the brave new world of 3D printing getting up to.
I haven’t asked the team why they are called Rabbit. I will say however that it is refreshing to not come across yet another business name incorporating the term 3D directly, or seeking to be cunning and amalgamate the term into its name using the now surely exhausted ploy of playing with vowels as numbers and just missing them out from the business name entirely. What Flickr did to the suffix –er, Apple did to the prefix i-, and many businesses in our subject sector (initiated this side of 2012) have done with ____3D indicate that by now, simple use of regular language is the emerging new cool. Dictionary abuse has resulted in support groups being established for librarians, etymologists and spell checker computer application program writers across the world. I can almost hear their uniform sigh of relief that the trend started by mobile texting before the era of predictive text may finally be coming to and end. Rabbit (R3BBT?) is even fresher than internet cat memes, the bizarre habit of naming a photograph of yourself a ‘selfie’ (rather than ‘vanitie’) and saying ‘meh…’
Their website offers the mix of clean black on white graphic design intermixed with vibrant colour textured panels with subtle layered animations that is the trend of the moment, the content feels professional, personable and offers no obvious idea about what anything costs. From a business perspective the reader may find this is a good model to follow. From a customer perspective this is a handy site and an accessible company who seem knowledgeable enough to take the hard work out of your hands, although beware that the amount of money being taken out of your hands is not made innately clear – this is in part the nature of the breadth of potential costs in the most customisable of industries, so don’t let that put you off. Just ask lots of questions and get rival quotes to make sure you get a good deal.
I for one think Rabbit has a good commercial balance on almost every perceivable level. And a phenomenal ability to levitate. Ahhh, no, I should say leap!