This is papercut 086 of my epic papercutting project (using the “922 Decorative Vector Ornaments” book). I’m adapting the designs for papercutting, and then practising by cutting out 100 designs in 100 days. Eventually I may may incorporate them in future papercuts that are made by laser and also by hand.
Woo, the cuts on this one are quite crisp…
…even when you look at them up close. And I still had a blunt blade and was basically just hacking away at the paper. I’m quite pleased with this :)
This is papercut 085 (only 15 more to go!) of my papercutting project (using the “922 Decorative Vector Ornaments” book. I am adapting the designs for papercutting, and then practising by cutting out 100 designs in 100 days. Eventually I may may incorporate them in future papercuts that are made by laser and also by hand.)
Because of the many repetitive elements in this design I think it might be one of the designs that would look better if cut by laser.
However, I’m not too disappointed by the hand-cut version. The ‘sun ray’ bits are quite crisp, actually.
As well as the central sun/flower design, I can also see things in this design that remind me of fish. (Or sharks. Or maybe birds.) When I move onto my next epic papercutting project (of creating all of my own designs from scratch) then I might remember this one, and try to hide some fish or animals in an abstract-looking design.
I really like this design, and it didn’t seem to take very long to cut. That reminds me – I must start timing how long the cuts actually take, because I really have no idea how long each design takes to cut. I enjoy the process so much and find it so ‘therapeutic’ that sometimes I can be cutting a really big project and it feels like the time is just flying by. And then other times, of course, I could be fighting with a fiddly design, in fading daylight, and using a blunt blade that I can’t be bothered to change – and in those cases the cuts seem to take forever.
I’m also getting better at tidying up the cuts before I take close-up photos of them!
My current favourite resources and inspiration for laser cutting designs. Dover Books royalty-free illustrations.
Dover Books: Royalty-free laser cutting resources
Laser cutters are so versatile that sometimes it’s really easy to get sidetracked, and think “I wonder if I could…” and then start on a whole new series of experiments. That’s how I ended up the other day wondering if I could create a birthday card with fairies on it. I’m not brilliant at drawing though, so I needed to try to find some royalty-free images that I could use as a basis for the designs, where I wouldn’t be infringing copyright and/or stealing someone else’s idea. At times like this, I usually turn to the brilliant Dover Books. They might just as well have “Royalty-Free Laser Cutting Resources” written all over them.
These books are absolutely great to use with art and design projects, including (of course) laser-cut and laser-etched projects. The books are specifically created for artists and craftspeople, to allow them to use the designs in their own projects. Once you have bought the book you may use the designs without having to pay royalties, and – more importantly – without breaking copyright laws.
As it says in the front of most of their books, “You may use them for graphics and crafts applications, free and without special permission, provided that you include no more than ten in the same publication or project…However, republication or reproduction of any illustration by any other graphic service, whether it be in a book, electronic, or in any other design resource is strictly prohibited.”
In other words, you can make artworks which include these images, but you can’t (e.g.) copy the images and sell them as stock images yourself.
The books used to just be in physical format, but in recent years they have included CD-ROMs with the artwork on them digitised as vector images and ready for you to incorporate in your own projects. (And now an increasing number of the books are available in eBook format.)