Gold Drone

All drones look the same. There are basically two types: Military (minimal and matte) or DIY (exposed wires and 3D printed parts). I wanted to explore the shape and design of a drone while maintaining it’s basic functionality. I wanted to push the ornamentation without diverging from standard “maker” materials or processes... Basically, I wanted to 3D print a flying Fabergé egg.

The Gold Drone was designed in Rhino and 3D printed on a FormLabs 2 UV Resin Printer. It uses a brushless motor system that I pulled from a common micro-drone called a “BabyHawk.” The top “cage” hinges from the back on a brass pin and clasps in the front using the bottom two legs of a bee. The flight controller and transmitter are hidden inside the center lotus. The flower patterns and curves are inspired by metal ornament common in Art Nouveau. The resin components were airbrushed individually before being assembled. I created the original version of the Gold Drone in a 4 week period as part of an Independent Study Program at RISD. I was supervised by Digital + Media's resident technologist, Stephen Cooke. The drone is fully functional and can fly, however, it cannot land without suffering damage.