I’m always fascinated by ways you can take 2D designs and make them 3 dimensional. One really easy way to do this is using http://www.123dapp.com/make (which can take any 3D model and turn it into stacked slices or intersecting planes with a few clicks).
I’ve also seen a technique of taking a thin design of some kind and expanding the shapes slowly across stacks of material to get a really cool effect, like so:
(the artist who made these did a $50,000 Kickstarter! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1154796888/wood-lasers-art)
I tried a simple one with cardboard-- took about 20 minutes in Illustrator and then 5-10 minutes on a laser (I used cardboard-- wood would be a bit slower). Here’s mine: