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 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.

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 Tutorial – Image Masking

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

0:02image masking functionality in the

0:04latest version of light burn

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

0:07an adorable puppy we’d like to

0:10engrave it but leaving out the

0:12background we just want the puppy

0:14now previously the way that you would

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

0:18load it in some image editing software

0:20crop it bring it back into light burn

0:23then continue on with your workflow but

0:24no more this is why we have image

0:26masking

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

0:29select a tool layer if you’re not

0:30familiar with those those are also new

0:32to the

0:33most recent versions of lightburn and

0:35those work

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

0:38the shapes and objects that you can draw

0:40however they will never be output

0:43they’re merely

0:43for marking things off on your design or

0:46doing things like this image mask

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

0:50rectangle

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

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

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

0:59two objects

1:00right click and now as you can see

1:02there’s an apply mask to image

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

1:07same option

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

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

1:12rectangle size now the one thing that

1:14you will note here

1:16is that the selection box has not

1:17changed it did not get any smaller

1:20and that is because this is a mask

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

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

1:27click off to deselect everything and

1:29then click just

1:30on the mask rectangle that i created

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

1:36it automatically updates it’s basically

1:38providing a window into that image

1:40and putting the image only where that

1:43rectangle is i can even invert this

1:45select just the image move the image

1:47around

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

1:51much more powerful because then you can

1:53tweak it after the fact and it’s

1:54completely non-destructive

1:57for example i can actually go and draw

1:59another shape

Transcript for LightBurn Tutorial – Image Masking (Cont…)

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

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

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

2:05dog’s face at the top well

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

2:11actually

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

2:13i’m then going to

2:15select that shape and the other one

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

2:21apply a mask

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

2:25grouped if there’s multiple shapes and

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

2:28layer

2:30now these are grouped i can select

2:32everything again right click

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

2:36see

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

2:39style window into the image and again

2:42this

2:42is completely movable

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

2:48preview

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

2:53have applied that mask

2:58now if i instead wanted to actually cut

3:01this out

3:02instead of using a tool layer you could

3:04then select

3:06those shapes switch it to a normal cut

3:08layer

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

3:11will actually also cut along that line

3:13if you wanted to cut it out

3:15it just tool layers are sometimes

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

3:19cut where your mask is

3:21so switch this back the other thing i

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

3:25the mask again

3:27is just to show you some of the

3:28complexities that you can do with this

3:30and delete this shape entirely

3:32add some text

3:35and then move that over the image

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

3:41select everything

3:42right click apply mask and as you can

3:45see it’s only going to engrave

3:47where that text is it works just like

3:50you would

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

3:52fill it’s going to be

3:53basically an image fill now another

3:56thing that you can do with this

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

Transcript for LightBurn Tutorial – Image Masking (Cont…)

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

4:04done you know that it’s perfectly

4:06oriented and you want to kind of clean

4:07things up you can actually right click

4:09on the image and there’s also a

4:11flattened image mask option

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

4:15selection box has shrunk

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

4:20that tool layer is gone from the cut

4:22layers so this image

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

4:26of the other image data

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

4:31that’s the image masking functionality

4:33we hope you like it thanks

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Last updated August 26, 2021

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