Do you use a Mac or PC? I bet you have a printer, scanner or camera too─but do you also use the ‘ol Scalpel and cutting mat? Despite all the modern advancements in technology, a Swann-Morton Scalpel* has always been in my toolbox, and here’s why…
✔ Even when I design CD Sleeves and leaflets, for example, I print the designs out and need to trim them down using trim marks. Using a scalpel instead of scissors gives an accurate cut with perfect straight lines. I use a metal ruler and cutting mat, too.
✔ When I need pencils sharpening, using a sharp instrument like this enables me to create custom-shaped tips. These tips are useful for different colouring techniques when drawing visuals, for example.
✔ If I ever need to print off a few pages of flyers (normally for my families’ business or limited self promotion), using a scalpel gives the design prints a professional finish.
✔ ….heck, using a scalpel separates the designer from every scissor-wielding granny on the planet (if you’re reading this Gran, no offence!).
Advice on Swann-Morton Scalpels and Surgical Blades:
1. Firstly, make sure you order the style and type of blades that suit the job. Circled above (1) is where you can find the blade number.
2. There are different size scalpels around. The size of the blade handle can be found at the end. See above circles: (2) shows knife number 4, and circle (3) shows size 3. There are different brands, but the Swann-Morton Scalpel is the best and most well-know available.
3. Blades for general use are non-sterile. Remember this is you ever cut yourself (I’m no medical expert, so I won’t offer any other info on this).
4. When using a scalpel, make sure you use a metal ruler for cutting straight lines. Using a plastic one is not recommended, as the knife blade can cut into it. A cutting mat is also advisable (see top image). You can also use cut-resistant gloves for projects that require a lot of cutting!
*There are affiliate links in this post.
So, should every designer own one of these? I reckon so─I mean, even web designers often draw visuals, hehe…
Do You use a scalpel and metal ruler? Do you find them useful? Leave your comments below…