Laser Type

A few days ago I saw this and got really excited:

Way earlier in the year I backed Ithaca Generator‘s IndieGogo project and have been following along with close interest ever since. My friend and former co-worker Leon was advocating for this makerspace years ago, but this my first visit.

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I wasn’t sure what I wanted to laser cut when I got there (and I arrived late) but I had an old Christopher Mackenzie vector illustration that I thought would have been perfect. As luck would have it, that file was nowhere to be found. Then I wondered what one of my typefaces (selfish, I know) would cut well. I realized that Jonah’s Uncombined would be perfect for a simple type sample, at a few sizes. I did have to modify the “o” and give a little extra spacing to some characters.

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Then I handed my Illustrator file over to one of the kind volunteers working open house. The vector file had to be hollow with a tiny stroke (I think .001 in) which is the path that the laser would follow. I was already having a lot of fun at this point, but when the laser started to cut the blue paper we loaded in, my mind was blown. See for yourself.

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So that was less than one our of my Friday night but a highly memorable hour. It helped that I brought my computer and know/love Illustrator, but really, creating something for the laser machine was quick, simple, and fun. There were other wood cut creations that were really inspiring, and a 3D printer making something wonderful (with the most magical robotic sounds and tones). Basically at this point I’m just trying to figure out what level of membership I want, since I probably won’t be getting my own maker stuff soon (and why bother, since the community is alive and thriving)!