Wild n' Funky Bright Acrylic Puzzles

These look fantastic. It’s a really clever idea. I love working with alcohol inks.

If you ever want to return to wood, go with Baltic Birch ply (not the same as birch ply). You shouldn’t have voids and glue plugs and as long as you get it flat on the bed, it should cut fairly consistently.


Yay! Sparking creativity is the gift that reciprocates :heart_eyes: :heart_eyes: :heart_eyes:

Thanks David! For a 6x6" puzzle, they normally take about 45 minutes + to complete. Not to shabby for such a small puzzle! The real surprise is the tiny dragons, at 3x3". People have been taking 20 minutes or so to finish those! Granted, there is no puzzle image to work off of, and I don’t tell my puzzle testers what they are working on unless they need a hint ;p

A clear sealer could do the trick of re-shinning any of the foggy areas! I have two or three differnt sealers I can try out. As for epoxy, that will have to be someone else, as I don’t want to go down that rabbit hole;p Thanks for the suggestions!

Thanks Christy! I am definitely still staying with wood as well, the Baltic birch is definitely a better quality than the Home Depot underlayment that I was using :woman_facepalming: ;p


Wow, really nice! :slight_smile: loved them!
Very colourful


Very pretty!


Really neat idea and also love that you are testing the puzzles you make. Keep up the outstanding work and testing.


Testing with real people (instead of cats😅) is really fun, since as an artist most people in the art world don’t want the art to be touched, but in this case, that is exactly what it is for!

It is a little like sharing the creative experience with the person who is piecing it together :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


Those are totally awesome!! I bet my students would love to create those! Thank you for your generosity - I’ll have to check out your laser files. I know the kids will be very inspired.


I’ll be sharing one of the shimmer puzzle files Oct. 2nd, 2019, but if you are interested, I can send you a laser cutting curriculum puzzle project I’ve designed as part of a laser design course :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


Hi Jamely,

All I can say is WOW!! I can wait for October 2nd but am intrigued by “curriculum puzzle”. I did share your work with my students and of course they were dazzled. We will probably have to use plywood, because providing acrylic to the whole fifth grade (55 students) is too costly. They decided we could buy shiny paint in place of alcohol based inks, which should work fine.

I’ll be happy to share the results, and thanks again - teachers and librarians make, as my younger students say, the best sharers.


I am in no way educated on color g acrylic but might it be possible to add coloring to a acrylic glue? And if that dose not dry flat or shiny then some quick high grit sanding to restore shine.
Hmm now that I say it out loud it seems like a lot of work. Would still try it if I had the extra resources.


I messaged the link to the puzzle project unit to you, I’d love any feedback you have to offer, and of course social tagging would be fantastic ;p If any other teachers want to get access, please message me for the link!

It is definitely something that I could try, and it is on the backup list ;p You are completely right that doing that much prepping might make the profit margin too thin for the time that it takes;p Thanks for the ideas though!

Totally. You are amazing! I may have to modify it a bit, size wise, but let’s see…and yes, I will pass this on to fellow librarians. We are always strict about credit and copyright so with us, no worries!! I know a few techie librarians who will freak out over this - it’s really a great, well planned, well thought out unit. Kudos!

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Thank you for the fantastic compliments, Lisa! I tried to think of every file variation I might need if I was teaching it. If there is one I forgot, don’t hesitate to ping me for it!

For those interested in shaped jigsaw puzzles, I have shared my newest puzzle design, my Fall Leaf Halloween Puzzle.

Try it out if you get a chance! :blush::partying_face:


Wow those are amazing!! The colors are gorgeous. Wouldn’t they fade or scratch off?

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Thank you! Like any puzzle (or art print) you wouldn’t want to leave it in the sun for prolonged periods of time. Although I should definitely put some scraps outside in the Georgia weather to see how well they fare (in comparison to cardboard :rofl: ).

As for scratching, the color binds well with the surface and has a tiny bit of resin in it. If you take a sharp object to it and try to scratch it though, it will mark, like any puzzle piece.

Cool, yes I’m from Louisiana so I know how the weather is in the south. They are beautiful. Only wish I was half as talented And creative as you.:smiley:


Is there anyway we could chat? I am trying to achieve something similar & I get my machine Friday & I have no idea what I am doing. Thank you

Hi @sobeamber! Welcome to the Glowforge :sparkling_heart:

I recently answered another member’s message, so I’ll copy and paste that content here, hopefully it will start you out!

  • I use my Samsung Tab4 tablet to draw puzzles and puzzles shapes with the tablet pen (chosen specifically for drawing puzzle shapes!)
  • I use the Concepts app ($10 ish to export as SVG) I wrote up all my research in a post and why it is the best for Android: Android Vector Apps Write up for Android Tablet
  • When done with the initial path making, I export the SVG to my GDrive, then open it on my desktop computer either Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape. Then I tweak all the lines to make them smoother, curve better, make sure that all the ends of the paths butt up against another path vs. being too far away to complete the puzzle piece cut out, etc. I also look for too skinny pieces, sharp bits, too small/too large/too long, etc.
  • For whimsies, sometimes I add them into the puzzle at the drawing stage, and sometimes I leave blank spaces so that I can make them more precisely on the desktop.

Hope this helps, and I’d love to see what you come up with!

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