3D printing has helped people, businesses and innovations in ample ways with its versatility. Some use 3D printing to nurture their inner entrepreneur, businesses use it for prototyping and hobbyists indulge in 3D printing to hone their creativity.
Now it is time for a new era for visually impaired people. 3D printing can empower education and development of visually impaired students with 3D printed braille and tools. But why stop at that when much more can be offered, for example, tactile art? “Feeling” is the sight of a blind, who experience much of the world through touch. 3D printing allows producing artwork with good reference points and thereby helping a visually impaired person to visualize the painting.
It was not a long time back when Rachel Petty, a teacher of Engineering Art course at The Jerry Knight STEM Academy requested a consultation with us to know more about 3D printing and how this technology can impact the lives of the visually impaired group at Mansfield Independent School District. She brought up her concerns regarding the material, printing time, software to create the 3D file, post-processing and her expectations from this project. We were more than glad to answer her queries and guide her in the right direction.
Our hearts filled with joy when she got back to us after a while explaining the awesome and challenging experience she has had and the difference 3D printing made in the lives of visually impaired pupils and how students loved the paintings.
She also mentioned how her students actively participated in the whole process, she said “For the completed project, our students chose a painting that would work well as a 3D print, researched the artist and meaning behind the painting, and completed both a short essay as well as an audio recording of their work. Works included Van Gogh, Warhol, Dali, Hokusai, Mondrian, and several others.” She concluded by saying “I am so appreciative of the time you took to help me get this project off the ground” and shared a Promotional Video that school District’s communications department covered. The video can be watched Here.