Taylor, Andrew and Unver, Ertu (2005) An experimental study to test a 3D laser Scanner for body measurement and 3D virtual garment design in Fashion education. In: Wearable Futures – Hybrid Culture in the Design and Development of Soft Technology. University of Wales, pp. 1-14. ISBN 978-1-899274-34-5

Artists, scientists, anthropometrists and tailors have accurately measured the human body with traditional tools, such as tape measures, callipers and accumulated visceral experience for centuries. Due to the progressive acceleration in the quality of 3D graphics technology and computer processing power, many product industries that traditionally use 3D software as a 3D design and prototyping tool, are also successfully measuring, customizing and re-engineering the products they design and manufacture through the integrated use of 3D Laser scanning technology.

In the changing world of Fashion, 3D graphics technology has at last emerged from the shadows of academic research projects and hit the high streets. 3D body measurement surveys, using mobile 3D laser scanners, have mapped the true shape and body sizes of the UK and USA populations. Virtual fit and 3D visualisation technology has expanded out from the Internet, into the physical world, and is now available for shoppers to visualise made to measure garments.

The acceptance of three-dimensional body-scanning and 3D digital design tools into our everyday experiences can be seen as a significant move toward encouraging and developing new, innovative learning and teaching methods in Art & Design education. This paper describes an experimental study into the application of 3D laser scanner technology for use in learning and teaching of undergraduate and postgraduate fashion and textiles design; clothing manufacture, fashion marketing, merchandising and promotion. The study focuses on testing the 3D scanning equipment with a student sample group. The use of the sample group attempts to simulate a range of body shapes, categorised by the traditional standard size chart specification method, currently used to design new fashion collections for high street clothing retail and UK fashion education.

The methods applied for evaluation and testing of the 3D laser scanner for body measurement are described, and the results of the initial user experiences are discussed. The study seeks to establish the overall efficiency of 3D scanning technology and investigates the potential value for integration of the 3D Laser scanner with 3D clothing design and construction software. Conclusions provide recommendations on the potential effectiveness of connecting the results of the 3D body measurement study to the fashion curriculum

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