Recently in Materials Category

laser fractured glass

what's the finest thinnest line you can mark onto a glass using a 45 watt CO2 laser?  I didn't know either.

common practice with glass is to mark it with raster art to "etch" it.  that gives a pretty clean line.  but in a lot of materials, a vector line done with very cool settings can give an even cleaner line.  but vector work can be hotter so you gotta start much cooler and be concerned about cracking the glass.

so I tried.  my first several attempts didn't mark the glass at all or else were just enough to burn off the finger print oil.  good - at least I had room to work.

the vector lines came out looking terrible, like I'd tried to lay down a bead of glue with an unsteady hand.  I'd never seen glass look like that so I salivated to enlist my closeup lens.

below is a closeup of glass affected by vector and raster artwork.  left to right: etched "m", two very close vector lines, two more very close vector lines, good looking raster line, followed by three different vector lines.


above and below, you can see the vector lines with more irregular markings.  they look like strings of jewels, or maybe glass that's fractured sideways into a drip shape.  the raster seems a lot more regular and dense.



above, closeup of the "m" raster.


above, closeup of the vectors.


for scale, the whole bottle.

and after all that, the raster line retained its regal position of making the best line in glass.

in case you've ever wanted to know, the Epilog will interpret any vector outline thinner than 0.5 pt as vector.  0.5 point is the smallest thickness that can be treated as raster.  and I know some of you are going to ask what's the difference between a hairline specified vector and, say, one specified at .3?  probably nothing.

lasered toilet paper jokes traded

I worked with a lively group of high school students at Independence High School in San Jose a while back.  They heard I'd etched my face onto a toilet paper roll innard and chimed in to deliver me this jolly green giant of a cardboard tube etched with "Laura's Super Duty Toilet Tissue".
tpSuperDuty.jpgpretty good etching, guys! the grooves would be fun with silly putty if I have any spare time around this object.
tpThanksMachine.jpgin thanks, I laser cut this message and had it delivered back to them.
tpThanksMessage.jpgThanks for your charmin' gift!
for the curious - of all the materials I've lased, this one used the least amount of heat - at the fastest speed with hardly any power.  the exhaust was something to be reckoned with as you can see with the dense use of washers.  due to the good and strong exhaust, the little cutout pieces would blow around before they were done getting cut, sometimes keeping another part of that same letter from being cut. shown above is my second run.  I almost had to tape down the end roll to keep it from tp-ing the inside of the machine while the job was running but this one turned out to be just heavy enough to stay put.

laser cut paper ginkgo leaf

ginkgoLeaf.jpgwith her permission, I post a picture of a laser artist's work, one of her ginkgo leaves to be favors at her wedding.  she fed the laser hand drawn vectors that outlined the leaf and specified each vein.

she preferred that I not post her name lest she be inundated with requests for these and have to change careers to provide the world with billions of these gorgeous items.

my photo does not do it justice.  pixel-based displays and lines going every which way do not mix.  cut out of finely decorated cream and light yellow-green papers, each leaf fits into about a 3-inch diameter circle and feels like an ethereal fan in your fingers.

pranks with toilet paper roll innards

have you ever been so hit with instant comprehension of an over the top idea that you open your eyes so full that they hurt?  and your eyeball falls out?  ok, me neither BUT my eyelid muscles stung like I might've ripped something when a fellow laser creator this evening hit on just what to do with a bunch of toilet paper innards.

tpRoll.jpgetch sudoku puzzles on them and then reconstitute them with a couple sittings' worth of toilet paper (unused, you ninny) rolled back on them.  then sabotage your friends' bathrooms.

thank you, Robert Snedegar, for this hilarious idea!  we continued to riff on this....

why isn't Scott Tissue trying to sell tp like Pepsi sells drinks?  "Win prizes!  Read the innard of your tp roll to see what you've won!  Win a lifetime supply!"

someone should ask someone else to marry them this way, the perpetrator pacing the halls, borrowing the neighbor's bathroom to ensure that their intended recipient will be the next user of the bathroom to get the message.  we won't talk about what happens if the recipient is overjoyed with the proposal and forgets ... what ... state they're in before pursing the object of their affections.

and limericks - why isn't anyone putting dirty limericks on tp rolls to entertain the cleaned up masses?

I wonder what mine says ...

calling on all my creative maniac friends

what statement could we make with 5000 etched or cut toilet paper innards?  I'm dying to create something but it would have to make a strong statement - beautiful or entertaining or something having to do with recycling.  and these rolls are just not speaking to me.
I know ... maybe that's a good thing.  but i'm inspired by things like Tara Donovan's work where she takes a common everyday item - lots of them - and displays them in a very stunning way.
all you readers I'm seeing from over at missionmission - if you could, what statement would You make with a million toilet paper innards?

see past post for more tp laser info.

holy grail achieved for laser artist

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face on rollFINALLY, I achieved something I've been thinking, salivating, dreaming of doing for over a year now - laser etch SomeThing on the innard of a toilet paper roll.

can you see it? that's not Jesus or his mom. that is me. there, I said it, put it on the web, it must be true.

no, really. I saw it etch out with my own eyes. and the picture is enhanced a bit so it shows up better online although this material doesn't darken much.

so why did it take me so long? I just had to build a little jig to hold it. needed to make it heavier so it would turn properly. but the photo is wider than it should be because the jig has a narrower diameter than the roll. will improve it so the turning radius matches the toilet paper roll - or make my artwork narrower next time.

I can sleep now.

too much of a good thing spoils the broth

I just noticed that the last several posts I've made are all phallic-focused. Yeah, they are fun little creatures, they appear out of nowhere in thought and sometimes otherwise. But really, there is more to life. Even mine.

I was preparing materials for a light holiday-focused fun laser class a few days ago, playing with spray paint and acrylic. I was showing a friend the series, "I started with this plain snowman here but you know me, I can't leave well enough alone." He replied, "So you moved the carrot nose down to his crotch?" "Heyyy, that never occurred to me." And it was true.

I put my face on it, of course!

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