Camera gear is expensive. There are many 3D printer camera projects that can save you money including a gearless follow focus, a camera gantry for still photography and 110mm film scanner. What we see in the photo above is a flash diffuser for the Canon Speedlight 580EX II created by Eric Chu for a MAKE: photographer.
After chatting with the photographer about what makes a good flash diffuser shape Eric designed one in Autodesk Inventor using measurements from the Canon flash unit. He sent them to a Ultimaker 3D printer for production in a clear PLA corn-based plastic that will be durable enough to stand the rigours of the photo lab.
Two versions of the 3D printed flash diffuser were created, a normal rectangular shaped diffuser and a triangular version for improved light diffusion. Even after a month of daily use the diffusers are still working well and last a lot longer than the “paper” versions that were used previously.