Photo prep & etch on slate advice seeking

I have just made the jump to Lightburn and looking to etch slate, I have done a few basic pics but now struggling to get a good output

which was using laserGRBL, I got the lion after a few goes which I was really pleased with but other images I just want the subject not a white burnt background, machine is a 3018 (non branded) running a woodpecker board, 7w laser, Last top image getting better Current settings


































Any help would be great, thanks in advance

Invert your image, cut away the stuff you don’t want - nothing magic about your machine or the image, just need to understand that what you burn turns white on slate, what you burn turns black on organics.

To increase contrast, I rub the slate with a drop of machine oil (sewing machine oil/3-in-1 oil). Just a small drop will coat the entire 100x100mm slate and will harden off in an hour or so.

I’m not a fan of polyester sprays, as they tend to flake off with time and don’t handle heat as well as just plain old (and cheap!) oil.

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