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A Priest, a Cosplay Artist, and a High School Student Walk into Maker Faire

Visitors to Maker Faire Bay Area, a massive gathering of makers, crafters, tinkerers, and artisans from all walks of life, may notice a tool popping up again and again. A sleek white box with a glass lid and a beam of light glittering inside: a Glowforge 3D laser printer.

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Kallisti Kilmer Shows Off Her Props At Maker Faire Bay Area 2017. (Photo: Business Wire)

Kallisti Kilmer Shows Off Her Props At Maker Faire Bay Area 2017. (Photo: Business Wire)

Throughout the fair, among robots, kinetic roller coasters, and virtual reality headsets, they’ll find Father Marion Makarewicz, a priest with a congregation in rural Missouri. On a set of stationery pencils, he’s engraved the words ‘Just one tool’. “That’s what I love about my Glowforge,” he explains. “I’ve printed earrings for parishioners, a bespoke carrying case for a padre from Mexico, these funky eyeglasses frames for myself, new pieces for my favorite board game… I’m not much of a designer, but this one tool gives me creative superpowers.”

Outside, cosplay artist Kallisti Kilmer from Seattle brandishes a fearsome mega-gun straight from the pages of her daughter’s favorite comic book. Smiling, she explains that she left her retail job to pursue her dream: becoming a full time prop mistress. These days, she uses her Glowforge to craft fantastical, made-to-order costumes and props. “I always thought a tool like this would cost tens of thousands of dollars...but then again, there wasn’t a tool like this before. The software is so simple, I can practically materialize iconic comic book weapons and props with a few clicks.”

Among the masses of makers, Glowforge lasers light up a variety of inspired projects. A couple from WA, DC offers visitors the chance to “print your own monster.” A father-and-daughter duo from the Pacific Northwest have erected an imposing Japanese castle that took a school project just a little farther than her teacher intended. A designer from South Carolina showcases detailed fan art engravings and custom-made props.

In Zone 2 is a sight more familiar to regular Maker Faire attendees: the Glowforge company booth. A row of Glowforge printers will spend the weekend humming away making custom prints for anyone patient enough to wait in the line of makers, young and old, which snakes through the booth. "We drove up from LA to see Glowforge in person for the first time. I’ve watched the video a hundred times but seeing it in real life is so worth it. I could watch this all day,” declared one such enthusiastic line-dweller.

Glowforge, which broke crowdfunding records for pre-orders of its highly-anticipated printer, is also kicking off Maker Faire Bay Area weekend with news of its first production run. Customers had, to date, been using pre-release units that would go back to the factory. Glowforge first production run printers are being manufactured just a dozen miles away at the Milpitas factory of Fortune Global 500 company Flextronics Incorporated.

“This is why we started this company.” said Glowforge CEO Dan Shapiro. “We’ve spent years building a tool that can transform people’s dreams into beautiful things they can touch and hold. It’s happening here this weekend. This is what we are about, and why we come to work every day. I can’t believe what our customers can make.”

Glowforge printers are available for pre-order on Glowforge.com.

About Glowforge

Glowforge is the Seattle-based creator of the Glowforge 3D laser printer. The wireless desktop laser makes it simple for designers, artists, and makers to take products directly from digital design to reality. Unlike 3D printers that build objects out of plastic, Glowforge uses subtractive technology to print products out of durable and beautiful materials like wood, leather, acrylic, paper and fabric. A sleek and efficient design makes this industrial-grade technology beautiful and affordable, and a friendly cloud-based app makes it easy to create amazing things with Glowforge. For more information, please visit https://glowforge.com.

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