This project was submitted for the Spring 2019 3D Printing and Design Competition. Participants were asked to respond to the following prompt: “We want to know how you created your project, what inspired you, what you learned along the way, and where it might lead you. In short we want you to tell us the story behind the project and reflect on the process.”


This project is called Butterfly and I created it using SolidWorks and 3D Builder. At the time, I wanted to make a graduation gift for a friend who was worried about their life after college. They were also going to have surgery and be unable to work for a few months so they were even more stressed and unsure of themselves. Since they were often associated with butterfly’s, I decided to create a butterfly to represent them. I had it printed white so they could paint it while they were bored recovering from the surgery. I also left a message on the exterior, hoping to inspire them when they need it which says. “Never forget that you are amazing and beautiful! Congrats Ma Belle Papillion!” It was difficult making the sides exactly the same, so I soon learned the mirror function, which allowed me to create a perfectly symmetrical butterfly. I was having difficulty creating the letters on the sides of the butterfly so I found an alternate program, 3D Builder, to create the message in a much simpler fashion. I learned how 3D printed objects can help create useful items for everyday use but also be utilized to help people emotionally and can have symbolic meaning. Created by Joseph Orosco.

David Tatem