Motorised Mouth Painting Easel
Adaptive Innovation’s motorised mouth painting easel allows someone with a disability such as quadriplegia to paint independently, by removing a number of the physical limitations of mouth painting and also removing the need for extensive carer assistance that is often required. Our easel allows a person with only minimal head movements to be able to paint, as well as draw, work with greeting cards, or work a touch-screen tablet.
For people with quadriplegia or those with limited hand and foot mobility mouth painting can be a creative outlet. However, mouth painting has severe limitations. It involves difficulty changing brushes or colours and only limited reach towards the easel, resulting in a painting area of only around a postcard in size for an individual with especially limited movement and reach. Carer assistance is also required when the person’s mobility is limited to the extent where changing brushes and colours is not possible independently, and to manually move the canvas to allow for a bigger painting area.
The Motorised Mouth Painting Easel transforms the experience of mouth painting by removing all of these obstacles. Once set up, the easel allows the user, with the tap of a chin switch, to control the 3-dimensional movement of the tablet - up/down, left/right, forward/backwards. The motorised tool arm can bring paint, paint brushes, pencils, touch pens or other implements to the user’s mouth and can then be retracted with the same chin switch when not in use.
This is made possible by an electronic control system with a scanning Graphical User Interface (GUI) which allows the user to select the various modes and sub modes with the single chin switch. This allows control of the tool arm for selection of brushes and paint colours, plus directional movements horizontally, vertically, and towards or away from the canvas. This improved movement control lets the user paint on a full A3 canvas with multi directional control, without a carer, which is a vast improvement over standard mouth painting.
Monica McGhie (pictured and in video), a member of the Mouth and Foot Painting Association and someone who earns a living from mouth painting, has described the Motorised Mouth Painting Easel as making an enormous difference for her. "The Motorised Mouth Painting Easel makes painting so much easier because I can move everything to one position that I can reach easier, so it's great".