Although I began folding paper when I was 11, I peaked at about 13 (back then, in my own mind) by mastering Jack Skillman’s “Jackstone”:scale

I had bought Robert Harbin’s Origami book series, the model featured in book 2 at the back which meant it wqas hard. It seems the Jackstone was at the time a measure of the complexity of the art and, strangely, the geometry made sense to me – so much so that, for whatever reason I committed it to memory and still fold it today. (read Dave Lister’s BOS account of it)detail

It is a masterpiece of pre-folding – that you unfold, turn inside out and collapse along existing lines – the magic still delights and fascinates me to this day.

Starting with some Chiyogami and Japanese foil (not used this before – really hard to fold cleanly) in 15cm squares, the finished fully 3D 6 pointed star measures about 7cm tip to tip – a little folded miracle.

Using a hot glue gun, I fastened short lengths of knotted ribbon to a point (the “untidy one where all the paper edges coalesce) and we end up with a lovely tree ornament that we have been using on our tiny xmas tree for years.view

Time to scale up and see if anyone else wants them – another paper product to sell, we shall see how that works out.


Faced with a brief hiatus before marking became crippling, I set about to re-master the free form folding technique of the Sato Rose:bunch

I have found many guides for Naomiki Sato’s rose that do precise pre-folding, invariably I get lost or end up with a bloom that is so geometrically perfect that it is not very realistic, so went searching for a technique that allowed for natural bloom variation.

Two years ago (or thereabouts) I had mastered the knack of turning a free-form Sato rose, but then lost it – not sure why. I mangled dozens of sheets of paper trying to get it back to no success. “Free form” is a term I use to describe a process that has nearly NO landmarks – you fold it to about here, then back a little and so on. With such a complicated fold, mistakes early ruin the later fold as they compound out of control.

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515: Viking Longship

Ever since first watching the telly series “Vikings” (currently 3 seasons, worth looking for) I was a fan of the gritty realism and glimpse into the lifestyle (albeit cinematicised) of what I imagine was a hard working and noble race:515LongShipViews2

The character “Floki” was an odd inventor genius and ship builder, I think he would have approved of this design – a teensy weensy longboat complete with oars, sail and dragon bow sprit.515LongShip

The design is challenging, for as much as it requires a really odd 10×1 sheet of paper as for the instructions in cryptic Italian – quite a challenge in themselves as the diagrams were heavily stylised and gave hints as to where to fold rather than solid landmarks.

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Joisel in Memoriam

On the 10th of October, 2010, the origami world lost a living treasure and master of the art of Origami – Monsieur Eric Joisel.MrDanny

To “breathe life into paper” is something I am inspired to do as a DIRECT reaction and influence of his work. To think more about the art and less about the technique is challenging, but a worthy struggle.

Eric Joisel – your legacy lives on. May all paper folders learn a little from your art, be inspired by your spirit and fold from the heart.

513: Koh’s Bubble-Eyed Goldfish

Not quite sure how I missed this little beauty in the flurry of folding fishies, but Sensei Koh messaged me on fakebook and asked why I had not folded it. Truth is I was dazed and confused (and just a little fished out) and must have just missed it:513BubbleEye

That is a pity, this little charmer is one of my favourites in the collection. Lovely aquiline body shape. flowing find and well formed head.

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