Ice Sculpture Inc. was founded by Jim Duggan who was part of the team that came in fourth place in the multi-block realistic category in the Ice Art World Championships in Fairbanks, Alaska. The company began using computer numerical control (CNC) ice carving equipment from its early days in business with the goal of producing more accurate and realistic ice sculpture designs in less time. "ArtCAM software was recommended by the company that makes my CNC ice carving machine," Duggan said.

I started using it from my early days in business. Over the years I have looked at many other programs and repeatedly made the decision to use ArtCAM. ArtCAM makes it easy to create complex designs and generates code that our carving machine uses to produce very crisp and exact ice sculptures. We can produce the highest quality ice sculptures in half the time that would be required to produce them by hand."
Star light star bright

Atlanta Ice Marvels "Star Light Star Bright" sculpture fourth-place winner in the multi-block realistic category in the 2011 Ice Art World Championships in Fairbanks, Alaska

The time savings are even greater when we are able to re-use an existing design as the basis for a new creation."

Ice Sculpture Inc. produces ice vodka luges, ice bars, wedding ice sculptures, ice corporate logos, ice sorbet dishes, ice shot glasses, etc. for corporate events, weddings, retirements, birthday parties, anniversaries, Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, Quinceaneras and other special occasions. Along with Joel McRae, Victor Dagatan and Matt Harden, Duggan formed Atlanta Ice Marvels (AIM) for the purpose of competing in the Ice Art World Championships in FairbanksAlaska. In 2011, the team came in fourth place in the multi-block realistic category in their first competition as a team. The team was led by Captain Joel McRae and the sculpture is the Blue Fairy turning Pinocchio into a boy. Its title is "Star Light, Star Bright." In 2012, the multi-block team will be led by Captain Victor Dagatan and include Joel McRae, Jeff Meyers and Jim Duggan. The Single Block team will consist of Captain Victor Dagatan and Jim Duggan. The World Ice Art Championships is the world’s largest annual ice art competition, attracting more than 100 ice artists and approximately 45,000 visitors from all over the world.

Sculpture of Tony Stewart’s NASCAR racer

A typical commercial project for Ice Sculpture Inc. is producing a 1/3 scale carving of a NASCAR racer for the Atlanta Motor Speedway VIP Club during the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup race. In 2011 Ice Sculpture Inc. made a model of Tony Stewart’s car that won the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. The car and display stand consisted of 9 blocks of ice, each with dimensions of 40 by 20 by 10 inches and weighing 300 pounds. The car included logos for Chevrolet, Goodyear Tire, Old Spice, Office Depot and Ice Sculpture Inc. The front end of the car consisted of three blocks, the rear end was another three blocks, the tires were made from another block and the display stand consisted of two blocks. The car would have taken several days to produce using the traditional method of drawing a template to define the profile of the sculpture, gluing each template on a block of ice, removing the excess ice with a chain saw and cutting out the logos with chisels and hand power tools. The traditional method is not only time-consuming but also prone to inaccuracies.

Machining the Lockheed Martin logo

Duggan began the process of designing the ice sculpture by locating a photo of a side view of the vehicle. He imported the raster image into ArtCAM and used the software to convert them to the vector format which is required for producing CNC programs. He scaled the template to the 1/3 size of the ice sculpture. Duggan also obtained raster images of each of the logos that appear on the car and also converted them to vector format. Duggan examined each of the vector images using the ArtCAM Vector Doctor feature to check for gaps between entities or overlapping entities that are difficult to spot with the naked eye but can cause problems during the creation of the CNC program. The Vector Doctor not only identified problems with vector art but in many cases automatically corrected them. He used the ArtCAM Vector Text feature to produce the text for the logos and positioned it on the template. Next, Duggan created a standard size ice block and copied it six times.

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