December Excitement – 3D Printing, CBS, and the White House!

January 5, 2015 at 1:49 pm Leave a comment

I had some extra excitement this holiday season. My 3D Printed Library of Congress Ornament was one of the winners of the first ever White House 3D Printed Ornament Design Challenge.

My ornament was one of five from the contest selected to be displayed in the East Wing of the White House and it’ll be part of a Smithsonian collection as well. I was thrilled to see a photo of my ornament on whitehouse.gov. Whitehouse.gov! And then as thrilled to see it on the front page of the Smithsonian 3D site.

Ornament on White House Web Site
My Ornament on WhiteHouse.Gov!!!

Ornament on Smithsonian 3D Site
My Ornament on the Smithsonian 3D Site!!!

I thought that would be the extent of the excitement, but I had no idea. The next week (December 8th) a crew from CBSNews came by our house to do an interview. The boys stayed home from daycare and after the interview the camera man even let Sagan see the camera. I also answered some questions for the Library of Congress for their blog and print magazine.

CBSNews - Sagan Holds Camera
Sagan Meets TV Camera

Excitement over, now, right? Nope! Then I received an exciting email from the White House. The Office of Science and Technology Policy to be more exact. They invited me and one guest to come and tour the White House and see all the decorations. After we passed all our background checks, I got to take that striking husband of mine on an epic date! I love impressing that man (he’s the whole reason I made a Library of Congress Ornament in the first place) and what better way than taking him to the White House? 🙂 And better yet– they displayed the Library of Congress Ornament… oh, in the White House Library.

White House North Lawn
White House!!!

Vicky and White House Library
Getting Photographed with my Ornament in the White House Library

Vicky Pretending to Give a Press Conference
I Was So Busy Pretending to Give a Press Conference… I Almost Missed the First Dog in the Background!

Vicky and White House Library
My Special Guest in the White House Library

I made some modifications to the model so it would be printable in Shapeways Steel. The price point is high (over 70 USD!), so I thought it would be something only I would get, but almost immediately some anonymous stranger on the Internet ordered some. I do have to admit, the Nickel Polished Steel and Gold Plated Steel does look awfully nice. (The plastics look great too).

Library of Congress Ornament - Gold Plated Steel
Library of Congress Ornament Printed in Shapeways Gold Polished Steel

I ended up on Michelle Obama’s Instagram. My ornament made a cameo on The Today Show. Someone actually used my name as a hashtag. Get this– I went to an informational meeting for the Mini NOVA Maker Faire and the organizers there knew who *I* was! Crazy!

Library of Congress Ornament and Vicky on Michelle Obama's Instagram
Me on Michelle Obama’s Instagram

As the holidays neared, though, I hadn’t heard anything about that CBS segment, so I just assumed it got cut for other news. Then as we were sitting down to dinner on Christmas Eve, my brother got a call from my Dad’s old boss.

“I just saw your sister on TV.”

I had Facebook friends all over Virginia post that they had seen it and the CEO of the biggest customer I work for saw it in Morgantown, West Virginia. The CEO! He’s no Ryan Somma, but I like impressing him as well. 🙂

My family was able to catch a later showing of the segment on WUSA9, so I got to see my relatives see me on TV. I haven’t been able to find an online video, but I did find a writeup on the WUSA9 website.

Christmas Eve - Chris, Carolyn, and Clint Look at Library of Congress Ornament on TV
My Family Watching My Ornament on TV on Christmas Eve

So yeah. Exciting way to end 2014. Now we’ll see what 2015 brings! : )

Entry filed under: 3D Printing. Tags: , , .

A #vickysomma First Open Source – Adjustable Face Jack-O-Lantern (The Dial-O-Lantern)

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