This past weekend Darin Jones and Andy Hromatka, Technical Sales Specialists with IKONICS Imaging, co-hosted a hands-on sandcarving seminar with the team at Media Blast & Abrasive, Inc. in Brea, California. This bi-annual seminar has been going on for over 10 years and is perfect for companies in the Personalization Industry who are looking to expand their business, refine special techniques, and network with other sandcarvers. Here are five key points that attendees took away from the seminar.
1. How to Create Optimum Artwork for Sandcarving
Day one of the seminar started out with artwork training. Darin talked everyone through the basics of creating quality artwork for optimum sandcarving results, then followed up with live demos of how to create artwork for different sandcarving techniques. High quality, accurate artwork is essential in creating successful high detailed and deep carved images. Topics included:
- Artwork Programs: We recently introduced new software to the sandcarving industry called S3: Simple Sandcarve Software. If you feel overwhelmed by all the options and settings in other artwork design programs such as Adobe Illustrator and CorelDraw, you may want to take a look at S3 for a program that requires less steps to meet your basic artwork needs for sandcarving.
- Front Blast vs. Back Blast: You set up your artwork different depending on where you are sandcarving. If you are sandcarving on the front of your substrate, you print your artwork right reading (so you can read it on your screen). If you are sandcarving on the back of your substrate (but will view it through the front), you need to mirror your artwork before printing.
- Vector Artwork: Vector artwork with crisp lines that is set to 100% black will give you the best results when sandcarving.
- Artwork for Compound Curves: When setting up artwork for a compound curve, such as a wine glass or martini glass, you need to match the curve of your artwork to the curve of the glass so the final result looks straight.
2. Sandcarving Substrates & Materials
Sandcarving is a process which allows you to etch or carve into a wide variety of materials. It may not always be obvious which materials will work for sandcarving, but the general rule of thumb is that if you can scratch it, you can blast it.
The ideal substrates for sandcarving are porous (brick, rock, raw wood, frosted glass, sandstone), brittle (granite, glass, crystal, ceramic, marble, porcelain) or smooth (metal, leather, cell phone cases, etc.).
3. How to Find Your Niche Market in Sandcarving
There are a wide variety of industries that sandcarving serves and finding your niche market is they key to your sandcarving success. Within each industry there is opportunity for you to carve out your own niche. For example, in the Memorial Industry you could focus on pet memorials, or maybe you want to create high-end, color-filled wine bottles for the Wine Bottle Industry. Turn your passion into dollars by finding your niche in one of these industries:
- Awards Industry
- Personalized Gifts Industry
- Wedding Industry
- Promotional Items Industry
- Signage Industry
- Architectural Industry
- Monument Industry
- Memorial Industry
- Wine Bottle Industry
- INSERT YOUR NICHE MARKET HERE!
4. Stencil Films: Washout Film vs. Dry Process Film vs. Laser Masks
Washout Film: Our line of washout films - including UltraPeel, R-Series, and MMX/MMHD - are self-adhesive with a stretchable membrane. They are repositionable and have high detail capabilities. Washout and drying time is required.
Dry Process Film: IKONICS Imaging makes the world's ONLY dry process film, RapidMask. This film is self-adhesive, can hold high-detail halftones, has strong blast resistance and requires NO washout or drying time.
Laser Masks: If you already have a laser you can easily add sandcarving to your business for a high ROI. Use you laser with one of our durable laser mask films, Blazer Orange or LaserTape, to give your laser etch depth along with cleaner, smoother edges. You can also add color-filling and stage-carving.
5. And Most Important... Sandcarving is FUN!
Day two of the seminar included a full day of hands-on sandcarving at Media Blast & Abrasive, Inc. with Darin and Andy. Media Blast manufactures all our CrystalBlast sandcarving machines. Everyone who attended the seminar had a chance to experience these top-of-the-line blast cabinets while personalizing mugs, glasses, powder-coated tumblers and glass panels. Attendees were also encouraged to bring in their own items from home to personalize. We had a BLAST with everyone who attended this seminar. Seeing the magic of fine grit abrasive turning a glass into a work of art never gets old!
Attend a Sandcarving Seminar
If you are interested in attending a sandcarving seminar, class or tradeshow with IKONICS Imaging, check out our upcoming class schedule or tradeshow schedule to see if we are coming to a town near you. You can also sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date on all our products, events and special offers.
Our next seminar with Media Blast in Brea, CA will be April 24-25, 2020. Please contact us today if you have any additional questions about our upcoming events.