Lately, we’ve had a lot of interest in laser cut cards- from birthday cards and wedding invitations to pop-ups of scenes and even people.
Working with paper, primarily card stock and heavier coated papers, is a lot of fun. Such papers come in a multitude of colors, but also textures and patterns. Faux leather, wood, and metal coatings provide many ways to express yourself with paper.
Because of the thickness of the paper, you can also etch designs and text onto the pages. See the white designs and text on the examples above.
Or, you can print something on the paper first and then create cutouts later using the laser cutter as we did with the Chicago skyline cutout.
Etsy and pinterest are full of examples of laser cut cards, especially wedding invitations. You’ll see how expensive they can be to purchase, but with a little time and effort at the makerlab you can make your own unique versions for a fraction of the cost. We’d be happy to help you get started.
Because the papers vary so much, laser cutting the paper is a bit trial and error, so bring a few pieces to experiment with.
In this workshop, we’ll learn some easy steps to use CorelDraw and a Laser Engraver to design and cut a wooden box and etch a picture or text of your choice to decorate the box. You’ll leave with a beautiful etched keepsake for yourself or for your Valentine.
Workshops includes a 1/32in. birch veneer panel, 12in by 24in. for exercises and the finished product. A finished engraving no larger than 8in by 10in is suggested. Feel free to bring your own wood piece to use, no larger than 12in by 24in.
Besides the usual holiday decals and stickers we cut with the vinyl cutter and the various cutouts and displays you can do with the laser cutter and the ghosts and goblins we 3D print, Phil found a way to etch Halloween designs into pumpkins using the rotary attachment! After etching, a coat of pottery glaze seals the deal.
A recent trip to the beach on a blazing hot, end-of-September weekend turned up several relatively flat, smooth sandstone rocks. The only thing missing was a fossil, so Phil fired up the laser and with a few tweaks to the settings produced our own fossil. He has etched into granite and marble before, but this turned out even better. The bluish tint of the etching really adds to the effect.
Nine middle school and high school students whose parents participate in OAI’s workforce training programs spent four afternoons recently building things in the MakerLab. They learned 2D design and the capabilities of the laser cutter to create a backup hanger.
Next, they spent the afternoon in a virtual world with game designer Malcolm Williams. He brought in his Virtual Reality setup and the students were able to draw in 3D- moving around what they had created as if it was hanging in the air. They also had fun exploring the insides of the Great Pyramids and then dodging zombies.
They learned about 3D printing and created 3D designs (below) using Sculptris. We 3D printed their creations so they could take them home.
Lastly, they build a table top robot which learned to scramble around a table but always turn around just before it looked as if it was going to fall off. They designed stickers for the robots to personalize them. Below is an angry rabbit/robot crab!