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Bas Relief STL file making.

With Bas-Relief you essentially have "levels" instead of "colors". What bas-relief isn't is a reconstruction of an object in 3D from one or two photos of the object, that requires a totally different sort of program.

(It is interesting to compare bas-relief with lithophanes. Although the process of creating the object is exactly the same, lithophanes are more like the old color photo slide idea, where light shining through the object is changed by the material of the object. In the case of slides the material is celluloid, in the case of modern lithophanes it is usually ABS plastic.)

In order to make a bas-relief using PhotoToMesh you need a simple clear original image. First I'll show you the problem of not following this advice:


not a good image

Notice these things:

  1. The background to the head disturbs the smoothness of the background in the bas-relief.
  2. The fact that one half of the face is in shadow means that all that part of the face is at the same level giving the face a wobbly look!
So even an apparently simple photo like the one shown above can have poor results as a bas-relief (though as a lithophane it is perfect!). The results are even worse if shadows from objects fall across the face.

What sort of images make good bas-reliefs then? Well, apart from simple evenly lit photos with blank backgrounds (not always easy to find!) here is a classic example:

A good bas-relief image

The two color tile (from Westminster Abbey Chapter House) makes an ideal subject for a bas-relief 3D printing.

And if you have some simple illustrations with flat or only slightly shaded colors, then the number of levels in the bas-relief will correspond to the number of different colors in the image. Here's an example:

A good bas-relief image

You can find images like this using Google image search by putting "illustration" at the end of your search text. For example:

classic car illustration

There are many free clipart collections where all you need to do is sign up to get access to the images.

PhotoToMesh lets you put bas-reliefs on other 3D shapes too, for example, cylinders:

A good bas-relief image.

These screenshots give you more examples about which sort of photos work best with PhotoToMesh.

PhotoToMesh costs $49.99 ($34.99 for V4) and there is a free demo which you can download to try on your own images and machines:






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