Has anyone tried etching a photograph?

Has anyone tried etching a photograph on wood? Tips, examples, and advice would be appreciated.

Do a search for PHOTO and ENGRAVE and you’ll find a wealth of info! :blush:



Dots, not vary power. Sometimes better to aim lower as you can overlay the print again. Trial and error are your biggest friends.


Yes, there is a wealth of information about this here including a fair amount I’ve contributed. Be aware that right now we are pretty limited in size and complexity. There is a lot on getting around that here as well.

I got a couple of small test prints to work, but when I try the full size photo, it comes up with an error message. What am I doing wrong here?

Probably too big. If it won’t even load then you need to make it smaller. But if it loads but errors on the Print, try reducing the LPI to 225 or 270. The GF defaults to 450 which is a lot of data for it to handle (they’re working on it).


Largest I’ve been able to pull with a photo is between 8X10 and 10X12, and that took quite a few tries. Below 225 might error less on larger. The question of quality below a certain resolution might be the flip side. This should also improve as the software improves even more.

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Hi Jason, what settings and material are the white dog? that is really clear and I am having a hard time. I have been making contrast photos in grayscale in photoshop and saving to svg in inkscape then using HD Photo engrave and playing with settings and can’t get anywhere close to this. Any adivice welcome.

I’ll see if I can’t find those settings for that one.

Can’t find for certain. Turns out my notes weren’t good enough. I need to upgrade my note taking process.

me too. no worries

That was on proofgrade, so I may have used one of the proofgrade settings once I messed with the image some (but it would have been proofgrade settings from a year ago, if so). I know I changed it to black and white and sharpened it before print.

These are copies of original charcoal/pencil drawings my parents have. I took clear pics with my phone, then adjusted levels to give a nice contrast for engraving.

My final image that I uploaded had a similar DPI as the target LPI of 225 - not exact, the cloud will fix that, but it wasn’t drastically larger than required at 3000 pixels for a 12" span.

Using 12x12 white-finish chipboard, dots, full zoom, minimal pew, I got a pretty good result.