The First 3D Photograph Company in Saskatchewan
We all have family photos – but have you ever thought about everyone in your family having a miniature personal sculpture?
When Reflection 3D’s founders Tantan Xie, Rui Wang, Hao Qian, and Art Gilles went to Finland for a University of Regina MBA program, they never expected to find a technology that would inspire them to build a business.
“We saw people doing 3D printing in Finland and thought ‘We should start something - we should do something,’” shares Xie. “We travelled to China and the U.S. to look for different solutions and we learned a lot about the 3D world.”
The group found the right equipment and programs and started Reflection 3D technology in Regina, Saskatchewan. They create detailed miniature sculptures from life-sized objects like people, couples and pets. The replica includes the exact colouring, exact size to scale and even the facial expression of the subject.
Their system includes a 360° full-body scanner with 89 cameras and 23 projectors that take a photo at the same time. It takes one second to have the photo taken and then about 15 minutes for a full scan to be emailed to the subject. Xie explains that a company in the U.S. prints the figurines: “This causes us not to have to maintain the $100,000 3D printer.”
“80% of our customer base is about family. That is a thing we value a lot. People often want to give their sculptures to their wife or they say, ‘I want my kids to stay small; they are growing so fast’”, Xie continues. “We have a customer from Moose Jaw who is creating a 3D family album. He is collecting scans of all family members for his entire family.”
As Reflections 3D starts moving into the small business market and creating personal sculpture business card holders, 3D prints of buildings using drones, and interesting gift items they recognize that “this is our stepping stone for moving into professional 3D printing world. We are getting ready for when the market is ready to accept 3D printing as normal.”
“We are a group of innovative people who work hard. We are the first to try a lot of these techniques. We try, we fail, we start over again. In the future, no one will be better than us.”
Founders: Tantan Xie, Rui Wang, Hao Qian, Art Gilles
Incorporation Date: Feb 2016