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How Scan the World inspired me to create Poppy Day themed prints


a year ago

People, objects, buildings, myths. All these things are what build up a nation's history and culture. Scan the World is on a mission to create a digital library of cultural heritage through 3D scanning with the goal of distributing it worldwide for 3D printing! Every object on Scan the World has its own story with some dating as far back as 30,000 BC, we can learn so much about our collective past from what an object can universally communicate.

As a community we are encouraged to share our culture, our history and our stories through 3D by scanning sculptures that you connect with or by remixing existing scans in your interpretation — in your story. Scan the World inspired me to do this with the upcoming Poppy Day… 

A cemetery is a place for the dead to rest but for us — the living, it's a place of remembrance and a place of cultural/personal history filled with stories. A few weeks ago I paid a visit to the East Side of Highgate Cemetery in London, the third of the first 7 burial grounds to exist in London. As I walked down Highgate's path I passed by the graves of people who left their footprints on the sands of time: Bruce Reynolds - criminal mastermind behind the 1963 Great Train Robbery, Karl Marx - founder of Marxism, Patrick Caulfield - English artist, George Eliot aka Mary Ann Cross - one of the leading female writers of the Victorian era, War Heroes and so many more. There I was greeted by incredible memorials and their symbolism: stone angels, crosses, half draped urns and clasped hands to name a few. https://www.kensalgreen.co.uk/monuments/ 

There was one particular cross that struck something in me, it had flowers on it and the words "Thy Will Be Done". With the scan the world initiative in mind and poppy/remembrance day coming up I decided to scan it on my phone and remix it for poppy day, changing the words to “Lest We Forget” and the flowers to poppies. The more I looked around me, the more ideas I got, one of them including an angel holding a bowl which in my mind became an angel holding a pot of poppies. Angels represent perpetual mourners and the poppy represents remembrance and hope for peace so together would have told a beautiful story. However, those ideas did not come to fruition in time for this year's poppy day, instead I remixed a bunch of simpler objects and you can find them here: https://www.myminifactory.com/users/Paris3D


The model I’m most attached too and proud of is the “Never Forget” helmet, cross and boots because of my story and my connection to it. This piece pays tribute to the ancestors I never knew but whose stories lived on, such as the Great Grandfather and his son who were taken prisoners of war, the Great Grandfathers who had to leave their wives and baby daughters behind to take base at the Palestine in Israel and Iceland. I was born and raised in London, as were the generations before me, those men made huge sacrifices to fight and protect our heritage, my ancestors, to save the future generations, to save me and give us the life we know now. No one could guarantee their return and the men who came back were not the same men who left, some men lost their body parts, some lost their minds and some lost their lives. I look at my model and try to imagine the man under the helmet, where those boots had been and what they went through. 

Scan the World is also about remembering and educating. Everything about today only exists because of everything that came before it so why not every once in a while look back to see how far we've come and reconnect with our ancestral, cultural past. It’s what make today, today. And today I remember them and give my thanks.