Oh Boy!!! If you missed the opportunity to purchase a Mr. Beam two years ago then you are in luck. Mr. Beam II is now available on Kick Starter. This home use laser cutter uses a low wattage laser that allows you to cut wood, fabric, and paper, along with being able to engrave just about anything you can think of. For those working in animation this tool is invaluable for your studio or project. Lets just theorize that you need to cut 1000 shapes of a character running. If you do this by hand it will most likely take you 10 to 30 minutes to cut out on character form. With a laser cutter this will take you literally less than 60 seconds. So you can either take 600 minutes using a laser or 30,000 minutes and developing a hand injury using an exact knife. I personally would prefer the laser.
If you needed to make small scale sets, this laser cutter is for you. How often have you needed to make a building but lacked the tools or materials or even the type of space required to cut wood. With Mr. Beam II you could use cardboard to build your set and have it precisely cut to exactly what you want it to look like. Now of course cardboard is a terrible building material since it will sag over time and drive you crazy when you’re trying to animate. But we’ve seen it done professionally and if done right you’d never notice that it was a cardboard set and not a $1000 word set build by a professional.
Still not convinced? Did you ever wonder how LAIKA Studios got such amazing detail to the clothing on their production of Box Trolls? We’ll they used a laser to etch into the fabrics which gave them the added tactile look and feel of miniature scaled clothing. With a low powered laser they did this in no time and were able to reach a level of production that very few studios have been able to achieve.
Checkout their Kick Starter or watch the promotional video below to see if this is the type of laser cutter for you.