I saw the images below online, and thought I’d try to gain experience engraving a design with my Shapeoko 3 and then painting it. Since the images were round, I thought that coasters would be the perfect project to attempt.
After converting these images into vectors (using Inkscape’s Trace Bitmap function), I engraved and then cut out two 4-inch coasters out of red oak [the vector images are 3.75 inches wide]:
For the Geckos, my little helper and I painted the recessed areas with acrylic paint. We made sure to get it thoroughly covered, which meant that we also got paint on the top surface.
Once that dried, we used some 220 grit sandpaper to sand the surface. This sanded away all the dried paint off of the top surface, revealing the natural wood underneath. After a quick hit with a can of air to remove all sawdust, I sealed it with a few coats of lacquer spray. I just have to attach cork to the bottom and it is all finished.
For the Roses, I tried using wood stain. After that dried (a few days), I painted the recessed areas with black acrylic paint. Again, I was liberal with the paint and got paint on the stained surface as well. This time, however, when I sanded off the dried paint, it started taking the stain with it. It looks horrible to me, as I had a goal in mind that I didn’t achieve. Someone else told me that I made it look like distressed wood, and they kind of liked it. I haven’t sealed it with lacquer yet, but I might just finish it out. I am chalking this one up to a learning experience (stain plus paint doesn’t work for this approach). I am trying to stain another piece before I cut it out on my SO3 to see what a stain/natural wood color combination looks like. Anyway, sorry that I don’t have any interim pictures, but here is the ‘distressed’ Rose coaster: