Working with GOSH Arts programme the V&A ran 3D printing workshops with children treated in isolation for bone marrow transplants.
Remixing V&A sculptures in hospital beds
The workshops were delivered on an individual basis at patients’ bedsides. Sculptris, a free 3D modelling tool, was used to introduce patients to 3D software. Sculptris presents users with a piece of manipulatable virtual clay, which Alex Flowers’, the V&A’s Digital Programmes Team Leader, says offers a self-explanatory way to dive into 3D modelling.
3D builder, included for free in the Windows 10’s Creators Update, was used to import the patients’ Sculptris models and V&A sculptures from Scan the World, allowing patients to merge the models together into their own new creations.
Models were printed with a Makerbot 3D printer using Makerbot’s Print software.
The software ran on Windows tablets. The set-up was chosen as much for ease of use, as it was necessitated by the hospital’s infection controlled environment. The surfaces of a tablet are far easier to clean than the many crevices in a laptop keyboard. The team used replaceable screen protectors and antibacterial gel to wipe down the tablets between uses.
Philip Pullman inspired creations
One patient, who had been reading Philip Pullman’s His Dark Material Trilogy, was inspired to create this model, based on the “daemons” in the trilogy. It features a vulture with frog friends, or daemons keeping watch.
Schools in Victoria, Australia, are using 3D printing to help young students have a more “hands-on” understanding of biology, using 3D printed sculls and bones. UCL have teamed with Microsoft to create 3D printed game to help children with cystic fibrosis.
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Featured image shows a patient sculpting a burger using Sculptris. Photo via the V&A.