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PIAF Picture in a Flash Tactile Graphic Maker

Note: Contact us if you only need paper at 1-877-724-4922.

Swell touch paper - 8.5" x 11" - 100 sheets:   Yes (Add $209.25)
Swell touch paper - 11" x 11.5" - 100 sheets:   YES (Add $263.25)
Swell touch paper - 11" x 17" - 100 sheets:   YES (Add $364.50)
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PIAF Picture in a Flash (PIAF) Tactile Graphic Maker

PIAF is high-quality Tactile Graphics

PIAF produces high quality tactile graphics using heat sensitive capsule paper. It is ideal for people who are blind and vision impaired. PIAFs controlled heat source causes any black lines, letters or shapes that are drawn, printed or copied onto the capsule paper to swell. The result is an instant tactile graphic. PIAF is being used in a variety of educational, employment and personal settings.


In early education PIAF can be used to introduce simple shapes and basic concepts; to introduce the concept of drawing and two-dimensional rendering of solid objects; to encourage students in taking the first tentative steps to expressing themselves graphically; and to teach the concepts of handwriting and signatures. Later, PIAF can be used to access graphical information in nearly all subject areas especially Mathematics and Sciences.

Orientation and Mobility

PIAF can produce high-quality local area maps for orientation and mobility training, or make campus or building maps for students or employees.


With PIAF, blind and vision impaired people can understand the information on a computer screen, grasp organizational structure of the business and access sales charts. One or two tactile diagrams can save thousands of words.


PIAF can be used to make a chess board accessible, accessing pictures to know the difference between a giraffe and a leopard, and exploring world maps to identify where countries are located.


  • Handles paper sizes up to A3 (11x7 inches).
  • Fast operation.
  • Audio Indication - a beep lets you know when to insert the next sheet.
  • Special circuit to extend heater life.
  • Energy efficient and quiet.
  • Easy handling - strong, easy-grip handle and fold down paper trays.
  • Comprehensive safety features.

Resources for PIAF Users and Producers of Tactile Graphics

A graphic of Table Mountain This page is the gateway to our collection of manuals, guides and resources for the producer of tactile graphics. Click on the link in each paragraph to go to the resource mentioned in that paragraph.

To read the PIAF User Guide in English or download the PDF file, click here.

There are several sites around the web where you will find useful tips, examples and downloads to help you make better tactile images.

Guides and design resources

Collections and examples

We have a small collection of images on this site, similar to the Table Mountain diagram alongside, for you to use as resources for making tactile graphics using the Piaf.

We also have a small subset of the Purdue graphics, offered here as a collection of example graphics. Each example has two parts - one for Low Vision diagrams, and one for Braille. Use these examples to help you design your own graphics, and to give you an idea of the quality of images available from View International, linked above.

We have also included a pdf download of Marco Schuffelen's manual on producing tactile graphics. Marco has distilled the experience of 20 years' work at the Netherlands Library for the Blind into an exceptional resource for people making Tactile Graphics.

All image files should open in your PC's default image viewer; PDF files open in Adobe Acrobat; doc files will open in Microsoft Word or OpenOffice Writer.  Please feel free to download these images to use them yourself.



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