Here's how 3D printing is improving the lives of blind people

Martina CavalieriArt, Design, TechLeave a Comment

Stampa 3d

3D printing has brought a great revolution in our daily lives. Starting from simple shapes to complex structures this technology allows us to design many forms, giving vent to the creativity of all. Many studies / companies use this technology to improve the lives of millions of people with visual impairment: from tridimensional photos to 3D model of great masterpiece, from 3D maps to tactile books for children.

Here are some examples:

Le illustrazioni (e i libri) tridimensionali

We know the story of The Little Prince and we loved the illustrations in the book. But did you know that these illustrations have been faithfully reproduced in 3D?

To improve blind childrens’ reading experience, the designer Eva Sbaraini  has faithfully reproduced some of the book’s characters into 3D printable models. Below, you can find an example: the 3D model of the Little Prince.

3D model of The Little Prince

Another interesting example is the Tactile Picture Books Project (we talked about it here), where the team of the University of Colorado-Boulder has created 3D tactile books for children.

Please touch these masterpieces

Many museums are working to enable blind and visually impaired people to be able to touch the reproduced paintings of the most famous artists. There are some examples such as the Museo del Prado in Madrid, which organized an exhibition with some pieces of 3D re-produced art  (you can read full article here). Below you can find the 3D reproduction of a masterpiece exhibited at the museum.

Foto di libri tridimensionali per bambini non vedenti

In addition to that, there are Italian companies (like T-VedO) who are working to allow people with visual disabilities to enjoy the beauty of these artworks.

Another beautiful example is the 3D model of Mona Lisa made from Unseen Art group (we talked about here)

When photos become 3d models

Do you remember “Touchable Memories”, the project  born with the intention of transforming photos into 3D models? This is a very interesting project, that sees 3D printing as the protagonist to help people with visual disabilities to keep their memories alive.

3D photo
Tactile maps

Maps and building plans have become more affordable thanks to 3D printing. Some examples? Linespace, the 3D-Printed Display that can help blind people to explore maps and images and the recent project of Jason Kim, a young mechanical engineering student who, along with his professor, managed to design sophisticated Braille maps to allow blind people to orient themselves in the environment (here you can find the article).

These are just some examples, but 3D printing is making a lot of progress and it’s wonderful that so many organizations use this technology to develop projects to improve people’s lives :)

(via 3D Printing Industry)

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Martina Cavalieri
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Martina Cavalieri

I’m a 26 years old Italian graphic designer with a passion for typography and company branding. I have an MA in Industrial and Graphic Design and I’m currently Graphic Designer at Horus.

In my spare time I write for my art blog called Martineken and I keep pursuing my interest by doing graphic concepts and mock-ups.
Martina Cavalieri
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Questo articolo è disponibile anche in: Italian