Edgar Allen Poe 3D Printed Statue

The artwork promoting this downloadable 3D printer file from ArtStation.

Here is my take on a beautiful 3D print sculpture of Edgar Allan Poe by Mauro Misiewicz. I happened across this model on a site called ArtStation which provides a number of 3D print files you can download for a fee, in this case, $25.00.

The scene it depicts suggests that Poe's has perhaps just ascended from “The Pit and the Pendulum”, with a Raven on his shoulder and a docile Black Cat waiting on the platform to greet him. The dungeon stairway is crumbling a bit to reveal the skeletal corpse of a woman within, presumably the hapless victim from the short story “The Black Cat” along with a number of skulls strewn about the base.

The downloaded print file was in ten parts which turned out to be a plus for a couple reasons: 1.) I wasn't forced to accept the original size because I could change it's ratio in the printer slicing software and 2.) using different printer types, I could make some extremely detailed parts should the need arise.

The actual size of the completed scene was about 7” (180 mm) tall but, me being me, decided I wanted a larger version so I increased it to maximum size that both my printers could handle which turned out to be 900%. Yes, 900%.

A medium shot of Poe with the ubiquitous raven perched on his shoulder. The finished 'kit' ended up being a tad over 21" tall!

I made the largest parts (the base, Poe's cape and legs) on my filament printer which has a maximum printable area of a cubic foot whereas my resin printer can only handle 5” x 3” x 6 1/4” tall but the quality is superb. I used this printer for the really detailed work which was Poe's head, torso, arms, a cat, raven and lantern (which was sculpted by Mehmet Açıkgöz).

The resin parts printed fairly quickly (~ 4 hours max for the larger parts) but the filament parts took forever. The base took 50 hours alone with Poe's cape taking 48 hours and the legs just over a day. So, not counting sleep and failed prints, getting everything together took well over a week. I just made some basic measurements that put the completed kit at just over 21” tall when it is finished.

Once all the parts were ready, it was time for assembly. Because I was mixing two different mediums (filament & resin), the textures were significantly different. Filament prints tend to have obvious striation regardless of the printer's quality settings and they are even more apparent when a filament setting is paired with a resin part. This was the case with Poe's cape and torso. Once I attached the two parts together and hid the seam with modeling paste, I painted the cape portion with liquid resin that I cured with a portable UV light source. With four coats of cured resin, I was satisfied with the appearance of the finished part's lack of striation.

  • Close up of the lantern showing the incredible detail you can get with a resin printer. Click for a larger image.

  • The black cat looks stylized to me but not so bad if printed smaller. This version is 900% it's original size. Click for a larger image.

  • The hapless wife who was slain and entombed by her husband from the story "The Black Cat". This part was printed using my filament printer which shows the striation I mentioned in the text. Click for a larger image.

The raven was a different matter altogether. Being cast in resin, the quality was excellent but resulted in a very fragile object, particularly its legs. After some thought, I came up with the idea to cut off the foot and lower leg portion. I carefully drilled a hole through the foot and into the upper leg on the body and Poe's right shoulder where the raven was to perch. I found some insulated wire which I cut to length and bent to match the discarded part of the leg. I stripped off the insulation from the parts that would be used to secure the raven leg to body and the foot to Poe's shoulder. I painted the raven semi-gloss black with some dry brushing iridescent blue, green & yellow craft paint.

As stated, I printed a different version of the lantern on my resin printer. The original that came with the kit was a solid chunk of lantern attached to the left hand as one piece. I did a little digging and found a duplicate lantern sculpted by Mehmet Açıkgöz which was hollow like an actual lantern. I made a candle out of copper tubing, carved some scrap plastic for the flame and used clear plastic for the glass panes. I cut off the hand from the rejected lantern and CA glued it to the new lantern.

The cat didn't require much “tuning” aside from me grinding off the patch on the cat's left eye. In the story, the narrator cuts out his cat's left eye in a rage but nothing is said about him bandaging it up later. This would seem unlikely even if the cat would let itself be handled after such terrible treatment by its master.

My attempt at painting a dour Edgar Allan Poe. Not too bad if I do say so myself.

The addition of a rat to the scene was pretty easy if you have a 3D printer on hand. I don't know how I would get by without one.

The rat was my own addition to the scene since it cried out for one. I mean, what's a dungeon scene without a rat in it? I found a 3D printable file for one on Thingaverse and ran it off on my resin printer which took about two hours. After painting it a nice rat brown, I placed it on one of the skulls on the base and it looked quite at home there.

Painting the rest of the scene was a fairly straightforward affair after dealing with the striations issues I mentioned earlier. Poe was pretty simple in that I was just painting a gentleman of the period although I went for a haggard look of a man with a troubled mind.

The base was a bit more complicated because of the several objects on it. I primed the whole base with medium gray paint from a rattle can and then applied dark brown for the stones with blotches of dark gray and washes in black to accent the cracks and mortar lines. Using Mod Podge, I randomly applied it here and there and then dusted it with green and tan ground foam to suggest mold. The exposed female skeleton and skulls were painted with a base coat of off white followed by a light wash of yellow to suggest that they had been there awhile.

This build was interesting to me for several reasons, the primary one being to see if I could mix different 3D printing techniques and media without it being too obvious. The stone work is a bit clunky but not too objectionable but Poe came out very well. I have another of these sculpts from Misiewicz of H.P. Lovecraft but I have about six other models in line so it will have to wait. 3/20/22

 

A brief ~2 minute video showing this very nice statue in a more interesting way than still photos could possibly reveal.