MC Escher Vector Fish

After a life of loving the works of MC Escher I felt compelled to honor his work, taking it to the next level by vectorizing it. After coming across an amazing gift wrap book that exclusively featured sheets that are the works of MC Escher, I became obsessed with this piece of his work by staring at it hanging on my wall.

Using Inkscape I traced the lines of a fish and cut a few out with a laser cutter to see how they fit together. The result was about 10 fish that fit together, but not really tightly. The fish lived on my desk at work, allowing others to play with them. Seeing how much fun people could have while playing with a small puzzle that did not require a lot of puzzle solving inspired me. But then life took over and I got busy for 18-months and did not have time or access to a laser cutter to finish the project. So here and there I would occasionally tweak the design, trying to reduce tolerances and improving layers.

Having a paid project that required the laser cutter, I took the opportunity to run a batch of about 150 of the new design. Of course the first 10 were horrible, where a single fin being too long ruined any chance of them fitting together. The design process in Inkscape entails working on a single fish and then copy and pasting it while rotating it 60-degrees. Isolating work to a single edge is hard, but once it is understood to be the only way to get consistent results it is not that bad.

Overall I am really happy with how they all turned out. It is a fun little exercise putting them all together with a friend or even alone. As for what could be better, I think adding a slight raster edge to provide a slight bevel would be the best improvement. Future plans for this design are to keep churning them out when time permits and see how many can be collected; whether they get converted to a coffee table or wall hanging remains a mystery.

File on Github:

File on Thingiverse:

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