transforming 3D printer animation japan stop motion

TRANSFORMING – 3D Printed Nail Animation

“Imagine how it would be if your nails were revitalized. Colors change as your hands move. Ideas come into shapes.” This is the opening text found on the website for TRANSFORMING, a 2 minute stop motion animation (above) using 3D printed nails. Created by Taiyokikaku Co., Ltd. under planner/director Mizuki Kawano and producer Yuna Takayama, the video used designs created by Japanese nail artist, Hatsuki Furutani.

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Graphic artists from Taiyokikaku produced the animation data which was then printed into three-dimensional artificial nails using a 3D printer. ”We attached and replaced the nails to an actual human hand, and filmed this [animation] frame by frame. This stop motion animation was created without using any computer graphics”, describes TRANSFORMING on their website. Taiyokikaku apparently produced and used a total of 521 nails in the making of the video.

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The video closes with an inspiring quote, ”Life is truly beautiful because it never stops Transforming”, a symbolic line from Tsurezuregusa (Essays in Idleness) a popular work of Japanese classic literature.

Author Information


Eli Nygren is a graphic designer/project manager from Maui, Hawai'i. He is fluent in Japanese and English and is currently based in Tokyo. In addition to design, he loves music, camping, surfing, cooking and reading.

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