As a young person who is supported by her parents, it has been easy for me to take for granted the privilege of having easy-access to healthcare. However, as I have grown older, I have become more in-tune to the fact that accessible healthcare is not a reality for many people. In fact, it is estimated that more than 400 million people around the world (about 18.5% of the world’s population) do not have access to basic healthcare (http://www.oneillinstituteblog.org). I believe that healthcare is a human right, so the issue of how unavailable it is to a large percentage of the world’s population is important to me. Thus, my goal for this project was to create a stethoscope, an object that is representative of healthcare, in hopes of bringing this issue to light within our community.
In order to create the stethoscope I used one bar of soap to sculpt the earpiece and the head, as well as plastic tubing to connect these two pieces. I then molded my hand as well as my ear in order to stage the stethoscope, with the molding of my ear being the point at which I felt the farthest out of my comfort-zone during this project.
I feel that I was successful in creating a detailed vision for this project through my reference photos and sketches, however bringing this vision to life ended up being a bit more difficult than I had imagined — teaching me that it is important to see the project all the way through before starting-in on a specific idea.
The composition of this instrument for the final photo proved to be the biggest challenge for me given that the soap was fragile and there was a fair amount of tension in the tubing. However, I was able to work through this challenge with the help of others.