View Full Version : Acrylic Nightlight

Jeff Belany
01-04-2014, 3:45 PM
I do a few nightlights and they come out pretty well. But so far I have only done line art and now I have a customer that wants a photo. Any suggestions on setting on resolution that works well on a small acrylic piece? Does a lower res work better? I usually run at 400 dpi on my 45W Helix.

Any help greatly appreciated.

Jeff in northern Wisconsin (where it's supposed to be -23 Sunday night)

Dan Hintz
01-04-2014, 8:39 PM
That should be reasonable... acrylic is a relatively decent resolution substrate, as long as you don't overpower it. Set a good 1-bit dither and you're off to the races.

Joe Pelonio
01-04-2014, 9:54 PM
Be sure to start with a photo that has a good contrast between the subject and background, and
adjust for optimum contrast. It's helpful to try it first on cardstock before running it on the acrylic.

Jeff Belany
01-06-2014, 12:37 PM
Thanks for the input. Customer is supposed to be in today. But, it was -23 this morning.

Jeff in northern Wisconsin

Mike Lassiter
01-06-2014, 1:04 PM
I have done "a few". I would advise charging a $25 (min) fee for editing photo. You will likely find you need to remove a background or something that really doesn't need to be in the picture. I had one picture of a white lab dog standing in the snow that "we" wanted to make photo night light from. Well, dog is white, snow is white. I have Photograv and One Touch Photo from ULS also. Ran picture in One Touch and you lost the dogs legs - it looked like he had all 4 legs cut off. Was unable to dog in snow because of that. Had another picture of boy riding horse around barrel in competition. Had dirt for ground, with dust stirred around horses feet them barrier fencing, trees and such. Too much background stuff that will cause final product to be lacking. Did cut out using Corel Photo Paint and removed everything but boy,barrel and horse and night light turned out great. In night light you could even see rust spots on barrel. I did several photo night lights and after spending much time on 1st one done for a family member for only cost of light, I revised and starting charging for editing. I never got a picture that didn't need background removed or something. You can overpower image for night light when you get all the extra stuff on it that a picture likely has. People were very pleased with horse racing light - in fact bought 2 more of them.

Rich Kruyer
01-06-2014, 2:11 PM

Can you post more about the base of the night light?


Mike Lassiter
01-06-2014, 2:18 PM
What do you mean?

Rich Kruyer
01-06-2014, 4:02 PM
Is the nightlight something you purchase and just add the acrylic? Or do you create the whole night light?

Mike Lassiter
01-06-2014, 4:18 PM
night light purchased at Wal-Mart. LED light with photocell in it for around $5. Took frosted panel out( 3 small phillips head screws old housings together, scanned shape and vectorized it I could cut 1/4" acrylic out for photo engraving. Need Micro screwdriver to fit screws. occasionally one will be stripped and you cannot get screw out - FYI. Remember to mirror as you will engrave on back. One Touch Photo will do it automatically I think when you select acrylic as material. Carefully completely loosen top 2 screws, back bottom one out partially. Take plastic panel in one hand and housing in the other. Twist panel to force housings apart but do not separate them but enough to get panel out. You can raster engrave names and clipart on frosted panels that come on lights. You cannot do a photo on them due to ripply texture on them

Rich Kruyer
01-06-2014, 6:39 PM
Thanks Mike.

Dee Gallo
01-06-2014, 6:48 PM
I just use greyscale and Stucki. The key is to make your photo clean and clear, with good contrast but not too much.

The Lucy picture was from an 8x10 promo photo, so professionally done = good contrast and detail. I did that one with PhotoGrav. Here you can see what the light looks like and what the unlit engraving looks like for an example of how much contrast you need. The other photo was just a snapshot and not very high resolution. These were both burned at 600 dpi.