This instructable is a follow-up to my previous one, which was all about making pixel art out of wood, small enough so you can decorate your desk with it. The goal of this instructable still is the same, but the method is quite different. In the previous instructable I was only able to make some roughly-shaped pixels as small as 6x6 mm. An okay start, but I I really wanted to make my pixels much more precise, and especially a lot smaller. You see, my original plan was to make a small-scale version of some pixel art from Sam & Max: Hit the Road, which happens to be my all-time favourite adventure game :) Trouble is.. the pixel art I wanted to make was over 120 pixels wide. If each pixel had a width of 6 mm, that gets you something over 72 cm wide, which makes for one humongous desk decoration.

So, in this instructable I will show you another technique that lets you make wooden pixel art, but this time with pixels as small as a single square millimeter! What's really cool is that we'll be building our own tool to cut grid patterns on wood, which makes it a whole lot easier to draw pixel art. Also, that grid-cutting tool is made out of Lego. How the brick is that supposed to work? Well, read on.. :)

Table of contents:
  1. Tools and materials
  2. Build the grid-cutting tool
  3. Use the tool to cut a grid pattern
  4. Draw the pixel art
  5. Saw along the outline
  6. Make a stand
  7. Add varnish
  8. Appendix A: Pixel art diorama
  9. Appendix B: Isometric grids
  10. Appendix C: Alternate designs of the grid-cutting tool
  11. Appendix D: Pixel art gallery

Step 1: Tools and Materials

  • Utility knife
  • Colour pencils, sharpener and eraser
  • Various saws with a thin blade; I used a fretsaw, a backsaw and a jigsaw. (If you have a scroll saw though, I imagine that would be even better.)
  • Wood rasps and files
  • Two spring clamps
  • Writing pad (or anything else less tall than 9.6 mm that can serve as a guide..)
  • Plunge router, to cut a dado/slot for the stand. (You can also use a drill, chisels and a mallet instead.)
  • MDF wood panel (You can really use any kind of wood that you can draw onto with colour pencils; MDF works great for this purpose though.)
  • Some basic Lego bricks to build the grid-cutting tool, which is detailed in the next step
  • Stack of small Post-its
  • Varnish; I used a matte clear lacquer spray.
Nice! That's a pretty clever way to make the pixels, I initially thought it was done with a computer somehow. <br>I especially like the Commander Video in three dee!
Thanks for the kind words :) By the way, you could actually do it pretty easy with a computer too; just search Youtube for &quot;wood transfer&quot;. You basically print whatever image you like, but mirrored. Then transfer that onto a piece of wood with an iron or gel medium; done. You always get a bit of a vintage effect with this technique though, since the image blends a bit with the wood colour.
Yeah but that wouldn't have the charm. Pixel art made with a computer isn't as cool.
That detail 0.0 I would call this a collage in the theme of games rather than pixel art
Thanks :) Well, I originally only planned to make one of these, but every time I was working on one you get little new ideas that you want try out, and then you'd have to make another one.. and another one .. and another .. and eventually you end up with a collage :)
The detail is incredible!
Thanks :) Maybe I can even get the pixels down to 0.5mm&sup2;; then I would actually have more pixels-per-inch than my calculator. Not exactly sure why that's cool, but it is :)

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