Tech Tuesday: 3D Printing Meets New York Fashion Week

By // February 11, 2014 // Posted in Tech Tuesday

Last month I wrote about Adobe Photoshop CC’s new 3D printing and several potential uses of the technology for wedding photographers. But since it’s Fashion Week in New York and there’s a 3D PrintShow this week, I’d like to revisit the topic, especially after seeing an ornate headpiece at the Alice + Olivia fashion show last night.


A model wears a handcrafted paper headpiece at the Alice + Olivia fashion show. It’s just one example of the type of accessory that could easily be created using 3D printing.

Granted, it looked like the headpiece was created by an incredibly talented paper artist, but even more ornate pieces can be created using a 3D printer (it was so crowded that I couldn’t find the designer to ask her how the headpiece was made). Either way, creating clothing, accessories and props for shoots is certainly within the realm of possibilities for fashion, portrait, senior and wedding photographers.

Looking at some of the intricate props, headdresses and gowns that photographer Kirsty Mitchell makes by hand for her amazing images, I imagine that 3D printing presents a time-saving opportunity, and for those of us who aren’t as talented in design and handcrafting as Mitchell, it’s a great way to add custom pieces to your kit.

On the more technical side–although I’m not sure the technology is really there yet–it should be possible to make basic parts or accessories for cameras. You can probably make a new film holder for your vintage large-format camera. There is huge potential for 3D printing, and as the process (and prices) improve, I’m sure there are going to be applications for the technology that we haven’t yet thought of.

So, if you’re in town this week and are curious about this up-and-coming technology, check out the 3D PrintShow. It runs from February 12-15 at the Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 W. 18th St., in New York City. There’s even a special session with 3D print artists and fashion designers.

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Theano Nikitas

Theano Nikitas

Theano Nikitas, a full-time freelance writer and photographer, has been writing about photography for 18 years. Although she loves digital, Theano still has a darkroom and a fridge filled with film thanks to her long-time passion for alternative processes and toy cameras.

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