Last night I spent a bunch of time practicing how to convert raster (bitmap, like png, gif, jpg etc) images to vector line drawings (basically svg for the glowforge). Here’s some of the results:
There’s a few steps to converting the images, and couple of gotchas that I encountered along the way.
Here’s some of the things I learned with this process:
- When engraving large areas (in the Sounders logo) it’s best to use the light engrave setting on proofgrade. I’m not sure the technical terms, but the heavier engrave leaves tiny hair-like fibers that are very prone to being scraped off, causing blemishes in the resulting piece. In the logo, I scraped these off with a knife, making it look very irregular.
- The SSFC logo was also an svg to start with, I thought it’d be easier to work with but it ended up taking a lot longer to prepare the image. (mainly because of overlapping shapes)
- Images with heavy black lines convert and look best (example: bulbasaur).
- Images with tiny black lines (squirtle) don’t work very well without some preprocessing. These can be enhanced with a pixel editing tool such as photoshop or affinity designer. I’m using illustrator and I haven’t figured out how to do this yet.
- With illustrator, the traced image has a large background object that needs to be removed. This could probably be avoided with the ‘ignore white’ setting.