Shown here is a relief carving in a 4" x 4" bone color Corian tile that is 1/4" thick. The subject is the Zodiac twins, Gemini. The tile was cut with a 1/16" rotary cutter. One pass would have been sufficient, but I ran a second pass 90 degrees to the first. The second pass did very little except clip a few ridges here and there.
This is the same material I use for Lithophanes. This is not a Lithophane but it can be back lighted for an interesting effect.
I spent some time with Adobe Lightroom to highlight the grain produced by the router tracks. These are not normally seen with the naked eye. The photo enlargement helps bring this detail out.
This is the hearld of the Saint Louis and San Franciso Railroad, AKA the FRISCO line. If you have any doubt it is called the coonskin, read this documentation. It is also the name and emblem of the city in Texas where I live.
What I did here was take the business card a fireman from the City of Frisco, Texas gave us after we had our lightning strike (and fire) back in 2009. I put the card in my scanner and turned it into a digital image. From there I put the image into Vectric's Aspire software where I converted the graphic into vector graphics.
One picture was created by the software showing exactly what the logo will look like when it is cut on a CNC router machine. The real parts have not been made but the picture looks very real. The other pictures shows two examples of the final parts and includes the business card from which they were designed.
Of course now the coonskin can be carved in any size my machine can handle.
The following information is quoted from the Vectric website, where I obtained the necessary software to create this type of picture. The software is a critical element but only one of many to create the finished item.
People are constantly looking for that 'Special gift' for a loved one, family and friends and a Lithophane or 3D picture is the perfect answer. The 3D lithophane is completely different to the usual printed photograph and is something that very few people will have seen. People are trully amazed by a lithophane that comes to life when lit from behind, and will last for generations giving untold pleasure to everyone who see's it.
What is a Lithophane?
Lithophanes are 3D photographs that when viewed in normal lighting look a little dull and lifeless. But when back lit transform into stunning 3D pictures with depth and detail that cannot be seen in a flat 2D photograph.
Lithophanes originate from a process developed back in the mid 1800's for mass producing 3D pictures in porcelain. A 3D design was hand engraved into a thin sheet of bees wax that was placed over a lighted candle to show the effect of light passing through the wax. This master design was then used to make a mold for casting designs in porcelain. Varying levels of light to pass through the porcelain depending upon the thickness
The Greek origin of lithophane work means "light in stone" or to "appear in stone".
Examples of what lithophanes were used for include Decorative Lamp Shades and Window Panels that came to life when lit from behind and German Beer Jugs that had a translucent bases that turned into 3D pictures once the beer had been drunk. Very few of the original antique lithophanes have survived because the 3D images look crude and worthless unless held in front of a light.
For more information about lithophanes visit the The Blair Museum of Lithophanes.
Here in Dimensional Art Org you see but one example of many Lithophanes I have created. This one is small measuring about 4.5 x 6 inches. I can go much larger with my HB2 machine. The material is Corian (brand) countertop material, originally 0.25 inches thick. I put together this simple prototype lightbox as one way to display this interesting type of art.
Now that I have proven the electricals, I plan to work on larger more elaborate presentations and framing. Follow this LINK to see how a Lithophane is made.
In case anyone was wondering, the partial leaf visible in the masthead and also in the very tiny icon that you see when bookmarking this site (called a favicon) was made by me. There is a complete description on how it was made HERE.
I don't have a practical use for it but it was an interesting project.
The title has a double meaning. All radio stations have a "callsign". These are call signs for the owners of amateur radio callsigns. They are plaques to hang on the wall. Most amateur operators are rather proud of their calls and like to show them off at their operating positions or at work and elsewhere.
I design these first in software, simulate the carving then export to my shop computer system. These are made from a 5" x 10" x 3/4" red oak plank and carved by my HB2 CNC router machine. Then each one is sanded, detailed and hand finished by me. These three are hand rubbed Tung oil finish.
This is the type of work of which I am interested in doing more. Anyone having a carving project like this they would like to have done, don't hesitate in contacting me for more information.