UBC Undergraduate Research

Integrating Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing with Northwest Coast Design Pershin, Andrew


This paper will explore how Computer Aided Design and Manufacturing (CAD/CAM) can be ethically merged with Northwest Coast Sculpture Manufacturing. Additional emphasis will be focused on resolving issues encountered while Integrating CAD/CAM technology with Native Design. The basics of digitizing designs through various scanning techniques, such as the point probe and point cloud method will be discussed along with obstacles encountered during the scanning of existing sculptures. Several approaches to computer modeling will be outlines focusing on MasterCAM’s Surface, Solid, and Art modeling features, as well as Zbrush’s organic tool-based digital sculpting program. The issues of integrating these technologies with Indigenous Northwest Coast design will be sewn through this discussion. The paper will further elaborate on the market potential of sculpted cultural wood products, along with resulting intellectual property issues, focusing on current legislative protection and areas of interest for artists pursuing computer aided manufacturing of their designs. Finally, a case study will be presented discussing ways in which Native communities, such as the Nisga’a Village of Laxgalts’asp, might benefit from CAD/CAM manufacturing. Furthermore it explores the computer aided manufacturing of a specific Northwest Coast design in wood. From this inquiry, directions forward are highlighted, focusing on how the Native Community might approach the issue of integrating this growing technology with existing design capabilities in a modern cultural context.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International