Vinyl Stickers – Scott

For this week’s project, I wanted to make the surprised pikachu sticker that became fairly popular in the past year. This was the image that I initially started with:

With multiple colors, I thought it would be a great project, with a fairly neat final outcome too. The first thing I noticed was that if I put the facial features on top of the yellow, I would have to be very careful with the alignment – but I also thought it wouldn’t matter too much exactly how precise it was.

When I ran the pixel trace, I noticed that many of the colors picked up features that I didn’t expect them to – I think there were very slight outlines that the program picked up. I had to cut those out of the path manually:

After having it finally separated into its individual components, this is what it looked like:

The top layers would be easy to line up, while the bottom two could be done manually with tweezers since the shapes had a fair amount of error tolerance. One thing you might have noticed that I did not realize would be an issue at the time, is that the center brown component has a very thin outline. This proved difficult to manage, as well as the extremely tiny nose. However, with some deliberation and intense tweezing, I managed to get a very nice final result:

The mouth, eyes, ears, nose, all lined up perfectly. The only issue was that the very thin brown line had broken. 

I mentioned this last time also, but I learned (again) that things come out a lot smaller than I think, and that 4 inches is smaller than I imagine. If I had a better intuition for the size and thinness it would be, I don’t think I would have left the thin brown line there. However, the clear transfer tape helped tremendously in the finalization of this project and I don’t think I would’ve been able to line up the pieces without it. Next time, I think I will try my best to avoid thin lines in general. Whether I do a thin outline or the whole piece, I realize nearly the same amount of material is being used up or thrown away anyway, so there’s no point in trying to conserve perimeters.

I put the sticker on my laptop, but on the outside portion. This proved to be a poor idea when the small pieces started to quickly fall off the yellow backdrop, (especially the brown strip, which completely fell off by the end of that day.) I think I’l definitely aim for bigger in general next time.

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