Introduction: Creating an Online Image in Real Life!
I will teach you how to cut out a simple image from the internet into acrylic!
Things you will need:
-Access to a Full Spectrum Laser cutter*
-8" by 12" extruded piece of .118" clear acrylic, which can be bought here: http://tinyurl.com/easy-acrylic (Inventables.com) $3.75
-Windows 7 "Snipping tool"** and for Windows XP, you can download a similar program here: http://tinyurl.com/XP-snipping-tool
-Coral Draw or any other picture editing software, such as Inkscape, Paint, or Photoshop. (All of these can be downloaded for a 30 day trial, Inkscape & Paint however, is free.)
*You can use any device similar to this, but for the sake of the tutorial, I'll be using a Full Spectrum Laser cutter, as it is what is provided at our school.
**You can use a different screen capture program, in Windows, if you hit 'Print Screen' on the keyboard then open up paint and then paste it, this will work just as well; however, cropping it is then more difficult.
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Step 1: Getting to Google Images!
First, you are going to want to open up your internet browser, or simply open a new tab by holding 'Ctrl' on your keyboard and then hitting 'T'. It will only work as the shortcut is intended, if 'Ctrl' is held down first.
Go to www.Google.com and left click on 'images' in the top left corner of the screen.
Step 2: Searching for Your Image!
Then you will need to type a simple description of the part you wish to make in the search box.
For this example I will be searching for 'Android'. After typing what you would like to search for hit the 'Enter' key on your keyboard, or you can left click on the White & Blue magnifying glass to the right of the search bar on Google.
Step 3: Selecting, and Saving Your Image!
For our purposes this 2-D picture is one of the most simplistic images we can pick.
To save your image simply left click on the image you found in Google Images and then click on "Full-Size image'* and finally, right click on the picture and then left click on "Save Image as". Go ahead and just save your image to your desktop, as this tutorial will be designed for that specific path.
*By doing this you will be getting a higher quality image, which will help later with editing the picture in the next step.
Step 4: Opening Your File Inkscape!
Now open up your image editing software such as Coral Draw or InkScape, I will be using InkScape. Now open up your image by going to 'File' at the top left corner of the editing software, and then clicking on open. Navigate to your desktop and simply click on your part, then click open.
Step 5: Editing for Structural Purposes!
If you noticed, if the android was to be cut out right now it would be cut out into separate pieces! This isn't good, as I'm assuming you want it to be an all-in-one design. What you need to do, is simply add little brackets like in the image above. Left click on the little dropper that is circled in black, then right click on the color of your item. Then left click on the box circled in red, and then click and drag on your image to create this box.
Now save your art, and then use your Laser cutting device to then cut this part! Keep in mind though, it is best that you leave it to the experts, when it comes to learning how to use this device. I personally don't think it should be taught through an online tutorial, but instead it should be taught 1 on 1 with someone that has already used it for at least a month.
Now just paint your Acrylic part with any colors you have, to make it look like the image that was once online!
Step 6: VoilÃ !
Isn't it beautiful? :)
Simply painted green, and Voilà!
Now, I did change the design slightly, but if you follow the previous design then it will work just as well.
Participated in the
Digital Fabrication Contest