D4E1 Camera Aid




Introduction: D4E1 Camera Aid

In this project, we developed a camera aid specially for Philippe. Philippe is a nice guy in his fifties with a mental disability and he has one big passion: photography.

Philippe bought this camera with money he earned while working on a farm. His attendants love the way he works with his camera. He brings his camera everywhere: on trips, in the house at his work. That is why they decided to make a photobook every month to show his family and friends everything he did.

Unfortunately not all these pictures have the best quality. Because the camera has no handle at the left side Philippe holds him at the lens. With the result, that lots of pictures are pictures of the fingers of Philippe in the image.

Another problem is that sometimes he accidentally changes the settings of his camera or deletes all his pictures.

He has big fingers and this gives him problems to reach the small on/off button. also he has got problems to see the different between the on/off button and the record button.

To help Philippe with these problems we have developed the camera aid specially for his camera.

The camera aid consists of 2 parts: the first is a steal frame with an extra handle and part that covers the buttons at the back of the camera. The second part are 2 3D-printed parts to make a bigger difference between the on/off button and the record button.


Client: Philippe

Attendant: Ria

Design team: Max Schoepen, Yannick Stoelen

Occupational therapist: Tine Dierick

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Step 1: Materials and Tools

For the camera aid, we will develop 2 parts which will help Philippe taking pictures.


  • Steal plate
  • Wooden chair leg
  • Small rubber bands
  • Camera screw
  • 3D printed parts
  • Paint
  • Rivet


  • Rivet pliers
  • Drill
  • Sandpaper
  • Glue
  • Grinding wheel
  • Saw
  • Bending table
  • File

Step 2: The Handle

For the handle we start by choosing the best form of a handle. We used the leg of a chair, which you can find in a local hobby center.

After we found the perfect form, we adapt this until he lies perfectly in the hand. We also shortened the end of the leg, to make it closer to the camera. We used sandpaper and a saw to become the form.

Step 3: The Handle: Drilling

If you have reached the perfect form we drilled 2 holes in the bottom of the wooden handle. The holes are diameter 5 mm and are 10 mm deep. These holes will be used for the rivets to attach the handle at the metal frame.

Step 4: The Handle: Painting

As last step we painted the handle with the same black as the camera.

Step 5: Steel Frame: Form

We started by measuring the camera and handle. So we determine the form of the frame.

Our frame has an L-form. The short end of the L will be used to cover the buttons at the back of the camera. This will prevent Philippe to change the settings or delete the pictures by accident.

First we start by cutting the L-form out of the steel plate with a grinding wheel. At the corner of the L we drilled a hole to make sure you don't cut the steal too far.

As second step we use the file to make the form smoother.

The next step is to drill 3 holes in the frame. 2 small holes of 5 mm at the end of the big leg of the L frame, here we will attach the handle. And 1 hole in the middle to attach the frame to the camera with the camera screw.

We will make it again smoother with the file.

Step 6: Steel Frame: Bending

Now we use the bending table to bend the frame in the perfect form. At the bending curves.

As last step we used the sanding band to remove the sharp edges and round the corners of the frame .

Step 7: Attach the Handle to the Frame

In this step we will use the rivet pliers to attach the handle to the frame. You put the rivets true the drilled holes of the frame and handle, than you use the pliers to lock these rivets.

The handle is ready.

Step 8: 3D Printed Buttons

To make a bigger difference between the two buttons we have used 3D printed buttons.

In the attachment you can find the stl files we used to make those prints.

For the on/off button we used a small button. But this button is made it higher and in a bright color. In this way Philippe feels and sees this button much better.

For the recording button we have 3 options:

Option 1: using just a ring. This will also prevent Philippe to zoom if it is not the purpose. The ring has a bright color so he can find the button more easily

Option 2: placing a bigger button on the button (same principal as the on/off button)

Option 3: combining the 2 previous options.

We chose to use the option 1. This is a small adaption but clear enough for Philippe.

Step 9: Attach the Buttons on the Camera

Now we use glue to attach the buttons on the camera.

The small button on the on/off button.

The ring around the record button.

Step 10: Attach the Handle at the Camera

Take the handle and the camera screw.

The camera screw is to long so we will use a little rondel to make the distance smaller.

Step 2 is putting the first rubber band on the camera screw after this we will put the frame on the screw and as last the second rubber band.

The rubber band will keep the frame in place after it is screwed on the camera.

The final step is to screw the frame on the camera.

Step 11: Results

After these changes Philippe is now able to take beautiful pictures and without any problems.

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    3 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Not just a great idea, inspiring story, bless Phillipe and blees you!


    3 years ago

    what is the intention of the 3d buttons?


    Reply 3 years ago

    These buttons help him to see the difference between the on/off button and the record button.

    Also the on/off button was embedded in the surface. The 3D button makes it easier for him to reach this button.

    The printed ring prevents him to zoom by accident.