This course is suitable for all abilities, and we welcome beginners with no previous experience of laser cutting and etching. Full design support and technical help will be given, and you will produce etched and cut pieces from a range of materials, with the potential to move on to a personal project. We have a stock of laser materials in the studio, including laser plywood, various colours of acrylic sheet, laser rubber (for making stamps), card, and eco paper. You can also cut and etch various found materials, such as sandstone, slate, driftwood, feathers and glass. If you have a specific material or colour range you would like to work with, please contact us beforehand to ensure we have it in stock ready for your course.
We use simple drawing tools on our laptops, and can also work with sketches and photographs by scanning them into the computer. We have run more technically-biased courses for school and college technicians and teaching staff, looking to explore the technology and use a variety of materials. We also have people who are looking to buy their own laser cutter and want to have a play around first, as well as those just looking for a creative break.
All tuition, materials, refreshments and lunches are provided. We can provide you with a laptop and mouse, but you can bring your own if you prefer. We can supply you with any files you make on the day, and you are welcome to bring a USB stick with you, or alternatively we can send them to you via fileshare. We will also send you a follow up e-mail with a list of any materials and suppliers discussed on the day.
If your preferred dates are not available and you can round up a friend please send us an email and we will do our best to accommodate you on a bespoke course. For an additional charge we can offer a one-to-one session, subject to availability of dates. To buy a gift voucher for a course click here.
The Early Bird catches the worm, and if you arrive before the course starts at 10am you are welcome to join us for tea / coffee and home made biscuits, still warm from the oven. There is no additional charge for our ticket holders.
Introduction to Laser Cutting
We look at the set up of the laser cutting machine, with a brief overview of how it works.
We look at the different ways to make files on the computer, including digital tracing, manual drawing and shape building tools.
It is always better to work with something that you like - choose a simple silhouette, piece of text, or drawing and prepare the file for cutting.
Lunch is homemade soup and homemade bread. Delicious and nutritious!
The afternoon is flexible - we can now continue making simple shapes and reinforce use of the cutter. Some people choose to look at different materials and how to alter the various settings for different effects.
We now know how to start with a simple design, prepare the file, and set up for cutting. You will continue to use the machine independently, with support if needed.
We begin with a relaxing hot drink and homemade biscuits, take in the view and chat about our plans for the day.
Laser Cutter Setup
Now we are more familiar with the laser cutting process, we can begin to look a little more closely at the set up of the machine - this will include cleaning, basic maintenance and the layout of the components.
Lunch is homemade soup and homemade bread. Delicious and nutritious!
You will now be bringing together all the parts of a personal project, or you may choose to look at some more materials to finish the day. We can also look at slightly more advanced techniques - for example, how to etch wood to different depths and finishes, how to mask work etc.
We now finish our last few cuts and pull everything together. We make sure all your work is wrapped up to keep it safe for the journey home. You will have a good knowledge of the entire laser cutting process and will have been using the machine independently. You will leave with some beautiful cut and etched pieces.
Images From The Course
Hi, I'm Kris and I run the laser cutting courses here at Shore Cottage Studio. As well as running the courses, I often work on private commissions, which can include anything from trophies and awards, framed paper artworks, badges and necklaces, board game tokens, rubber stamps - we even etched a flock of birds into our studio floor.
I produce my own artwork here in the studio using laser cut feathers and driftwood - I like to work with feathers from native birds wherever possible, such as pigeons, jays, pheasants and gulls, but will sometimes obtain more exotic varieties if I want to introduce some vibrant colour. The driftwood is found on Thurstaston Beach, and can be anything from bright turquoise to dulled brown - the paint is often flaky, with rust marks from nails and screws, and provides a contrast for the feathers.
Whenever I'm working on a new design of my own, I will always start with a very rough sketch, and then work right through to a detailed finished piece, so even if all you have is half an idea of something you want to make, that's enough - I can work with you to produce something amazing that you'll be proud of.
Compared to other laser cutting courses, I only work with very small groups, so nothing is rushed - you'll have plenty of time to learn the process at your own pace, and produce lots of samples to take away with you. I've owned and operated several different types of laser cutter, and while all machines are slightly different, the basic principles are the same, so at the end of the course you'll be much more at ease using laser cutters.
"Kris has shown me the potential with imagination and passion - it was nice to have had this introduction to lasers from a true craftsman."
"Kris was a brilliant teacher who really tailored the course to our needs."
At the Checkout page, after adding your details, you can choose to pay either the full amount or a non-refundable deposit (20% of your basket total). If you choose this option, you will receive a reminder email for the remaining amount about a week before your course date. If you wish to pay the remainder before the reminder email reaches you, please contact us at studio@ShoreCottageStudio.com and we will send you a payment link.
You can make payments to us either by paying with your debit or credit cards, a direct bank transfer, or you can even post us a cheque. You can use a gift voucher or vouchers as full or part payment for any course, just add your coupon code(s) where prompted in your basket or at the checkout.
Who Is This Course For?
- I have never used a laser cutter before, and would like to learn more about them in a relaxed environment
- I am thinking of starting my own business producing laser cut items to sell, but need to know how it all works first
- I work for a school / college and need training on how to prepare files and how to laser cut from a variety of materials
- I have no experience using graphic design programs, but I am determined to make some lovely things
- I know how to use graphic design programs, but I am not sure how to get these files ready for the laser cutter
Who Is This Course Not For?
- I already have a cutter and know how to cut, etch and score into different materials
- I know how to laser cut plywood, acrylic, paper, rubber, veneer, mdf
- I have no knowledge of how to use computer programs whatsoever
- I have no idea what I would even make
"We found the laser cutting course very rewarding and excellent value... we really loved every minute of our course with Kris."
"I had a fabulous 2 days... Kris was very informative and I found the course inspirational."
"I loved every minute of it! I would recommend this course to anyone wishing to learn new skills or to just have a bit of fun!"