LightBurn Tutorial 19 – Image Masking

The LightBurn Software Series

The Lightburn Software is probably the best generic laser cutting software available (I use it for almost all of my laser work). This series has LightBurn tutorials, hints and tips as well as the occasional speed comparisons between it and RDWorks. In this session, we learn about the LightBurn feature, Image Masking. My thanks to the team at Lightburn for allowing me to embed their videos.

Lightburn image masking - control what you engrave
LightBurn Image Masking – Control what you engrave

Contents

How to use the Apply Mask to Image feature in LightBurn

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Lightburn tutorial: using the image masking feature
LightBurn Tutorial: Using the Image Masking Feature

Transcript for LightBurn Image Masking Tutorial

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0:00 in this video i’ll be going over the new

0:02 image masking functionality in the

0:04 latest version of light burn

0:06 so let’s say we’ve got this a picture of

0:07 an adorable puppy we’d like to

0:10 engrave it but leaving out the

0:12 background we just want the puppy

0:14 now previously the way that you would

0:16 have to handle this is to take the image

0:18 load it in some image editing software

0:20 crop it bring it back into light burn

0:23 then continue on with your workflow but

0:24 no more this is why we have image

0:26 masking

0:28 so the first thing i’m going to do is

0:29 select a tool layer if you’re not

0:30 familiar with those those are also new

0:32 to the

0:33 most recent versions of lightburn and

0:35 those work

0:36 just like a normal cut layer in terms of

0:38 the shapes and objects that you can draw

0:40 however they will never be output

0:43 they’re merely

0:43 for marking things off on your design or

0:46 doing things like this image mask

0:48 so i’m going to then go and select

0:50 rectangle

0:52 i’m going to draw a box around the puppy

0:55 and then select both of them i just use

0:57 ctrl a in this case because there’s only

0:59 two objects

1:00 right click and now as you can see

1:02 there’s an apply mask to image

1:04 you can also go to tools and have the

1:07 same option

1:08 so i’m going to apply that and as you

1:10 can see it brings it down to just that

1:12 rectangle size now the one thing that

1:14 you will note here

1:16 is that the selection box has not

1:17 changed it did not get any smaller

1:20 and that is because this is a mask

1:23 and not a crop and let me show you what

1:24 that means in this case i’m going to

1:27 click off to deselect everything and

1:29 then click just

1:30 on the mask rectangle that i created

1:34 and if i drag this around as you can see

1:36 it automatically updates it’s basically

1:38 providing a window into that image

1:40 and putting the image only where that

1:43 rectangle is i can even invert this

1:45 select just the image move the image

1:47 around

1:49 and it does the same thing so this is

1:51much more powerful because then you can

1:53 tweak it after the fact and it’s

1:54 completely non-destructive

1:57 for example i can actually go and draw

1:59 another shape

Tran script for LightBurn Tutorial – Image Masking (Cont…)

2:00 let’s say i want to make a frame i know

2:03 this is a terrible frame but i want to

2:04 make a frame and i want to have the

2:05 dog’s face at the top well

2:08 one thing that i’ll have to do first is

2:11 actually

2:11 remove the mask so we can go back here

2:13 i’m then going to

2:15 select that shape and the other one

2:19 and group it so note that if you want to

2:21 apply a mask

2:23 the shapes that you use have to all be

2:25 grouped if there’s multiple shapes and

2:27 they all have to be of the same cut

2:28 layer

2:30 now these are grouped i can select

2:32 everything again right click

2:34 apply mask to image and now as you can

2:36 see

2:37 again it’s providing that sort of fill

2:39 style window into the image and again

2:42 this

2:42 is completely movable

2:45 just as you would expect and if i go to

2:48 preview

2:51 as you can see it only engraves where i

2:53 have applied that mask

2:58 now if i instead wanted to actually cut

3:01 this out

3:02 instead of using a tool layer you could

3:04 then select

3:06 those shapes switch it to a normal cut

3:08 layer

3:09 and now that i’ve done this now this

3:11 will actually also cut along that line

3:13 if you wanted to cut it out

3:15 it just tool layers are sometimes

3:16 simpler if you don’t actually want to

3:19 cut where your mask is

3:21 so switch this back the other thing i

3:24 could do here and i’m going to remove

3:25 the mask again

3:27 is just to show you some of the

3:28 complexities that you can do with this

3:30 and delete this shape entirely

3:32 add some text

3:35 and then move that over the image

3:38 look at his nose right on the p there

3:41 select everything

3:42 right click apply mask and as you can

3:45 see it’s only going to engrave

3:47 where that text is it works just like

3:50 you would

3:50 on a fill but instead of a solid color

3:52 fill it’s going to be

3:53 basically an image fill now another

3:56 thing that you can do with this

3:58 is if you’ve done this and you want to

Tran script for LightBurn Tutorial – Image Masking (Cont…)

4:02 bake this in so to speak you know you’re

4:04 done you know that it’s perfectly

4:06 oriented and you want to kind of clean

4:07 things up you can actually right click

4:09 on the image and there’s also a

4:11 flattened image mask option

4:13 i can select that as you can see now the

4:15 selection box has shrunk

4:17 to just the size of the masking area and

4:20 that tool layer is gone from the cut

4:22 layers so this image

4:24 is just that we’ve literally removed all

4:26 of the other image data

4:28 other than what you wanted it to be so

4:31 that’s the image masking functionality

4:33 we hope you like it thanks

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Last updated August 26, 2021

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