It took awhile to love this thing. It's a plotter and a vinyl cutter. These small machines have recently become much cheaper. Even smaller versions with a cutting mat are very popular in the crafter's sphere. In this picture, I have the pen installed..After I started to work with larger graphics images and programs, I become very frustrated with my ability to control and draw from the small touchpad on my laptop. I don't use a mouse. As a Christmas gift, my son gave me a generic graphics tablet. These are now available for less than $50, far less than the $600+ they cost ten years ago. The format for these generic tablets is nearly plug and play with most vector graphics programs, freeware Linux-based or not. It does have a pen with a battery, a bit heavier in the hand than the best tablets. However, it is a real revelation for me to combine this newly affordable equipment with the excellent Linux-based free software. I can design, alter, create, and draw. One of the last projects that I started to work on at the end of last semester was a "tile" wall piece double portrait of my son and myself made in shades of blue. For this piece I created a simplified version of a photograph and drew it with the plotter onto a 24" wide piece of plotter paper. Then, I traced the image by hand through the drawing onto a large wet clay bas-relief ground. Then, using layers of toned cobalt slip and LOTS of wax resits, I rolled in my gradients with a foam roller brayer. Here is the result thus far. I still haven't decided if I need to glaze it or not.