When I was younger, I always enjoyed heading to the ballpark with my father, in order to watch my Philadelphia Phillies play ball. Once in a while they would hold special giveaways where they would provide bobblehead dolls of their top players to the first 10,000 fans in attendance. I remember how incredibly enthralled I was by the exquisite details on the players faces. The bobblehead dolls looked pretty darned close to the real players. I always wondered how these were created, and wish that I too could have had my very own bobblehead of myself.
Little did I know that one day a company would ask me to email them 3 photographs of myself, and within a couple days, I would have a bobblehead in my likeness. This happened last week, when I contacted a company called LOOXIS about some mini 3D printed bobbleheads that they had been discussing with others on one of my favorite discussion forums. Etienne Renaud, CEO of LOOXIS responded to my request, and subsequently asked me to email him three photographs of myself, using my smartphone.
Renaud, asked me to send him a straight-on photo, one taken at a 45 degree angle, and a profile (side) photo. Within a few days of sending him the photos, he had created a bobblehead that looked almost exactly like myself. It was almost scary, how much this 8-inch tall doll looked like me. You can see the photos of the actual bobblehead here.
They had gotten my facial details down to the minute blemishes such as a mole I have on my upper lip. I was quite blown away. The body of my bobblehead was not 3D printed, as it was created using a mold, and it was not a replica of my actual body (I think my abs are a little more defined in real life).
Today, LOOXIS has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to launch a full scale operation exclusively producing these custom, 3D printed bobblehead dolls. The campaign is looking to raise a total of $14,780, and has backer levels starting at just $5.00. In order to have a bobblehead like the one the company created for me, in your likeness, you must pledge $60. Only 30 of these will be available at this discounted price, before the price jumps up to $90. You have the option of choosing between many different bodies, including Fred Football, Naughty Nick, Playful Pamela, Mermaid Mary, Guitar Gary, Beach Boy, Baby, Bride & Groom, and many more.
If you wish to forego the templated bodies, and want an actual custom made body, LOOXIS will do that for you as well. They are offering 5 of these entirely custom 3D printed bobbleheads for $190. Once the 5 of these are sold out, the price will jump up to $300.
“Our goal was to create a high quality product with an impressive likeness that is still affordable, and we have achieved that goal,” says LOOXIS. “We could have chosen to directly make a 3D print in color, but we felt that the current quality of 3D color printers did not meet our requirements for smooth, realistic skin tones and the high level of details for lively eyes that we wanted to achieve.”
The Kickstarter campaign will run from today through September 26. If all goes as planned, the company will begin mass production of the bodies in November, followed by the 3D printing of the heads, and then shipment of the bobbleheads to backers in January of 2015.