RhinoCAM Makes Bold Impressions at Louisiana Tech School of Design


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Joey Slaughter is Associate Professor of Art at Louisiana Tech University School of Design in Ruston, LA. Joey has successfully integrated Rhinoceros CAD and RhinoCAM into his Advanced Sculpture curriculum. Students learn how to use various Computerized Numerical.

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Control technology tools in a way that combines both hand work and technology into a new medium for the design and fabrication of Impressionist Art and Sculptures. The RhinoCAM toolpaths, stock materials and cutting tools are now merging with the more traditional tools of the artist such as clay, paint and brushes.

Vertigo – Show here on the right is a work by student Ben Wreyford. Ben used Rhino to design simple rectangles and Rhino cam profile toolpaths to cut those shapes in metal. The shapes were then bent on rollers and by hand. The assembled pieces are welded together. This piece is an example of the power of the simple line to convey a thought. Vertigo uses an assemblage of heavy 3D lines to suggest a swirling motion in an apparent burst of energy. 

Read the full case study here.

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The RhinoCAM Difference

Since 2015 Joey’s students have been learning how to draft 2D drawings in Rhino and how to generate toolpaths in RhinoCAM to drive their MultiCAM CNC Plasma as well as thor CNC router and laser“The RhinoCAM interface and workflow allow students to learn very quickly,” says Joey. Students start out by learning how to draw basic shapes and then how to generate the toolpaths required to cut those shapes on the CNC router. The materials being cut include wood, cardboard, vinyl and light metals.
  What was your RhinoCAM learning experience like? “There was a short learning curve to understand and learn how to apply the right toolpath for a given task. Overall however I found RhinoCAM to be quite easy to learn. Understanding materials and thicknesses was very easy to convey to my students.” Joey Slaughter, Associate Professor Louisiana Tech University School of Design, Ruston, LA

Student Projects

Here are a few very cool student projects that are excellent examples of how CNC technology has merged with the artist’s more traditional mediums of wood, metal, clay, and paint. We want to thank all of the Louisiana Tech School of Design students who contributed their works to this case study!

Instructor Project

The project below was created by Joey Slaughter, Associate Professor of Art at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, LA. Joey used Rhino and RhinoCAM to create the panel from ¾” MDF flat stock. The interior borders were cut using the 2 Axis Engraving operation with a 45 degree Vee mill cutter. The perimeter was cut using the 2 Axis Profiling operation and a ½” flat end mill. In the left image we see the Rhino part file with 2D curves representing the borders. In the middle image, the canvas is engraved on the school’s Techno CNC Router. On the right we see the completed work. In this example, each bordered region is painted. In many cases they are separately machined inlays.
From the Artist – My work is purposefully busy in reference to the busy-ness in our lives and our thoughts. I’ve long been interested in what a thought process looks like in the brain, imagining firings of color and structure. I see my works as explosions of thoughts, snippets of conversations, weavings of words and lyrics – a visualization of communication. 
Very cool projects, Joey!
Thank you for allowing us to showcase your work!

The Impressive Career of Associate Professor Joey Slaughter!

Joey Slaughter earned his BFA from Memphis College of Art and his MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art. Upon graduating from


Cranbrook, Slaughter was awarded the MJoan Mitchell Foundation MFA Grant. He has also received the Louisiana Division of the Arts Career Enhancement Grant in 2012. Slaughter has exhibited widely throughout the US in both solo and group exhibitions. His work has been published in Fresh Paint and in New American Paintings magazine three times. In 2017, Slaughter was awarded the Louisiana Prize from South Arts and received the Sam and Adele Golden Foundation residency. Joey currently lives in Ruston, LA, and is Associate Professor of Art at Louisiana Tech University.

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More About Louisiana Tech School of Design

Louisiana Tech University was founded in 1894 and is located in Ruston, Louisiana with a population of 12,000 students. The school is a

four-year selective admissions research university awarding bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. It’s mission as a selective-admissions comprehensive public university, Louisiana Tech is committed to quality in teaching, research, creative activity, public service, and workforce/economic development. Louisiana Tech maintains as its highest priority the education and development of its students in a challenging, yet safe and supportive, diverse community of learners.

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Don LaCourse

Don LaCourse

Don LaCourse is an Application Engineer with MecSoft Corporation. Don brings over 20 years of experience in CAD/CAM operations in both automotive and mold design applications. Don also has extensive experience in documenting CAD/CAM products and is actively involved with writing the on-line help as well as creating training tutorials for MecSoft's products.

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