1015: Among Us

The game of the moment appears to be “Among Us” – a playful collab game of murder in the dark, in space, featuring an imposter among the group.

t Us characters

I cannot pretend to have played it, yet. I gather you need friends, like-minded, that have good hand-eye coordination. I think I would be a liability given I used to think that “friendly fire” was the aim, and I always found it easier to murder those players just sitting there with me – apparently murdering team mates is generally not appreciated.

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Tribute to Eric Joisel – Week 4: “Harlequin”

I cannot for one moment pretend that all my folds work out – indeed I have sent LOTS of paper to landfill as twisted wrecks of models i have later mastered.

Ric Monty's CP of Joisel's Harlequin

A single week (with work, life etc) for me was not a challenge I could complete – the Harlequin model is a glorious extension of a “gnome-like” structure, the pre-creasing took me 2 days alone.

My unshaped first-fold of Joisel's Harlequin.

I managed the collapse, fairly cleanly, managed to isolate all the key features (face, hat, bow, cape, arms with ruffles, skirt and puffy-pants legs with diamond stockings. I ran out of time shaping, sadly.

Wet folding requires application of water and/or MC, molding, clamping and waiting for it to dry before moving on – the process is tedious, long winded if you have to go to work, sleep etc as well as shape. A piece like this would typically take at least a week to shape alone, so I am not sure it was a good model choice for a week challenge – that said, a couple of folders managed it – I have no idea how.

I will re-fold this, when I am less time-restricted. I am sad I did not complete the challenge actually – it upset me to think I did not have a week 4 entry. the process of acceptance has kicked in however and I am stoic enough to look back at what I did achieve over the past 4 weeks. I am inordinately proud of my efforts, regardless of what the judges thought.

I reflect on Joisel’s legacy a lot – he passed 10 years ago today, I remember the shock that consumed the origami community at his passing, but celebrate his artistic contribution – he re-defined shaping, “breathing life into paper” like no one else.

If you are interested in the challenge, other entrants and the whole shebang, go here: https://tributoajoisel.wordpress.com/ for the tribute competition home, galleries etc.

1014: Tribute To Eric Joisel – ‘Nude Man #4’

It is a well known fact that Eric Joisel was a sculptor before taking up paper as his medium of choice. Never is it more evident than the figurative human series of nudes he made, of which this is my approximation of #4:

Joisel's Nude man #4

He uses an ingenious grid system, dividing each corner up into 18 radial lines, where they intersect geometry emerges on a square and that geometry provides the landmarks for the base.

Joisel's Nude man #4 views

I had tried 2 different schemes for corner division, failed both times until I realised that, relative to the centre line, the interval is a geometric series that increases the further away you get. In the end I used a CP template to “rough out” the divisions and then with my trusty straight edge, ironed out the anomalies.

Corners of the sheet give you arms and legs, the head is near the top middle and a torturous neck reduction brings the chin down to allow the face to look out. The layers are reminiscent of musculature and indeed, Joisel teased and primped, each model different, few photographed clearly enough to really see what was what.

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1013: Tribute to Eric Joisel, Week 2: “Mermaid#1”

My blog suggests that there are mostl successes with my folds, this is far from the case. I had decided some 5 years back, that I was going to master “Mermaid” by Eric Joisel, and indeed I have tried on a few occasions and failed.

4 tries at Mermaid#1 by Joisel
When at first you do not succeed, try, try and try again.

It turned out that “Mermaid#1”, the less attractive of his collection was the subject of Week 2’s intermediate challenge (intermediate they say!!!?!?! Bahahahahahah.). In my confusion, back when I thought it was “choose ONE of thes models and fold it in 4 weeks” I had actually chosen mermaid, because. I recently learned it was fold 1 new model each week, AND copy the work of the master as close as possible. While I am not entirely sure this is respectful, and while I totally fucked this up with week 1 (I did an INTERPRETATION, not a copy, and scored few points for my best gnome ever which was quite disheartening), I am perservering because I like the challenge – it is good for my head.

mermaid#1 fourth try creasing it

This is the 4th model in this batch of folding. It is not perfect, and I will probably not be keeping it, but it is as close to a copy of the original as I can manage. Realistic human figures are hard, curves, breasts and soft tummys with delicate bellybuttons are even harder.

Joisel's "Mermaid#1", or as close as I can come to copying it
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Tribute to Eric Joisel – Week #1

So this started as a cautionary tale – I saw the a competition, in Spanish, where they were celebrating the art legacy of one of my favourite designers of all time: Eric Joisel. My initial “skimming” of the competition was “pick a level, choose a model from that level’s choices, fold that model” – easy, right?

I chose “Intermediate”, no real idea why, but I did, and was accepted. Just before the comp started, I get an email welcoming me to the competition and detailing Week 1’s challenge … wait!?!? What!?!?!

Joisel Gnome#4 Views

Turns out I signed up to fold ALL of the intermediate models, one a week for the next 4 weeks. I have no idea if I can actually fold some of the models in this category, but am (after the “reorientation”) prepared to give it a crack.

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1012: Cluster

If one word sums up 2020, it has to be “cluster”. Sadly, in the Covi-19 era, we find at the centre of most clusters is a cluster-f*ck:

Xander Perrott's "Trillian"

In desperate need of a fold, I turned to Xander Perrott’s e-book “Folded Forms” that I bought a while ago and settled on “Trillian” – a glorious 30 unit modular cluster that looks a little like a flower ball.

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1011: Foschi’s “Gecko”

I had a 12cm square of thin crisp Kraft and decided to try the Riccardo Foschi CP for his gecko. This required a 32 square grid, making resultant pleats 4mm or less each:

Riccardo Foschi's Gecko

I figured this was a good test of my accuracy, and found it quite relaxing but fiddly with my nerve-damaged hands. I am working on my CP deciphering skills, and this seemed quite straight forward.

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1010: Foschi’s “Black Widow”

Determined to work on one of my known folding weaknesses (solving crease patterns), I decided to have a go at Riccardo Foschi’s “Black Widow”:

Folded from 4×1 rectangle, box pleating teases out lovely long legs, cephalothorax and abdomen. With a little magic I managed to extend some pincer-like jaws also to use up some of the paper that was otherwise lurking in the transition between the body and the legs, which was quite pleasing.

Riccardo Foschi's Black Widow

Half the job is the collapse – working out what should be mountain, what should be valley, and the order of the collapse. The rest of the work (some say the hardest bit) is in the shaping as, often, the base you collapse to only roughly corresponds to the morphology of the final form, you then need to primp, tease, thin and pose to gain model finesse.

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1009: Mayhew (or Black Death)

Apparently one of the symptoms of the plague was to smell a sweet smell like flowers:

Xander Perrott's "Mayhew"

That escalated rather quickly, but that is life in a pandemic age I guess. This “black flower ball” is “Mayhew”, a kusudama designed by Xander Perrott, a lovely thing indeed.

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1008: Lend A Hand

After what feels like ages, I am returning to recreational folding (it is great therapy):

Sergio Gurachi's Skeleton hand

This started as a mystery CP by Sergio Guarachi, that I sort of solved, then researched and realised I collapsed it more or less correctly. I am still a NOOB when it comes to solving CPs, so was a little chuffed that my collapse liberated a workable number of points, and with some creative smooshing (an actual origami technique) got a fair approximation of a human skeletal hand.

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1007: The Difference Between a Duck…

I am reminded of a joke, oft told by my Father In law: “What’s the difference between a duck? … Nothing … One leg is both the same”:

A duck

In looking to start some recreational folding I remembered a model from Wei Lin Chen I found ages ago but had not gotten around to until now.

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1006: Fake News

In an age of great confusion and concern over health, safety and social distancing, it is interesting (nay, alarming) to see the spike of “fake news” relating to the current Pandemic:

Xander Perrott's "Zenith"

We learn via social media that Covid-19 was man-made, released as a viral payload from some weaponsied experiment (gone wrong, or not), is transmitted via 5G, and is defeated by injecting disinfectant and drinking bleach. We hear and watch idiot orange leader lie, contradict himself, blame storm, underfund, over-claim, then go and play golf while his country suffers.

We learn that some ffolk, tired of being “isolated” for a week or two in one of the most virus-ravaged countries chose to riot (hence magnify the problem) for their right to congregate, despite social distancing suggestions in place to save their lives – and we see them turn up, enraged, with guns, like they can shoot the fucking invisible enemy.

We hear from celebrities, entombed in their mansions, doing it tough because they are down to only domestic champagne, we hear of crop circles, conspiracies, complete shit uttered by people with access to the greater public, in the end (like this post) it is all NOISE, no SIGNAL.

It appears scientists and health workers DO know how to mitigate spread, that social distancing IS effective at arresting spread, that outbreaks are inevitable but manageble if there is a healthcare system in place applying rational and reasonable steps, and that the world will return to some version of normalcy slowly and cautiously.

Xander Perrott's "Zenith" scale

This is “Zenith”, a 30 piece kusudama, designed by Xander Perrott (from his eBook “Folded Forms”), folded from duo red/natural Kraft. It is reminiscent of the shape we are seeing of virus (cells?), it was folded during a telly binge, it helped to calm me down when I think of work Monday: I am a teacher, for the past few weeks I have had had nearly normal classes (I teach mostly year 11 and 12, they were back in F2F after an extended period in ISO). This coming week, all students return to a tiny inner-city campus. 1700 boys, 120 staff, no room to swing a cat, social distancing impossible. Happy days.

1005: Mask#16

Lately I have been folding a lot of faces – some free-form, some crease pattern (CP) based:

Mask #16 - Flynn Jackson

This is Mask #16, designed by Flynn Jackson, folded from cardstock, painted bronze.

I am beginning to get a “feel” for facial features – repetition and practice of free-folding helps me realise nuances between face structured, position of key anchors (brow ridge, nose, mouth) and how to set the eyes.

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1004: Baby Yoda

I, like many of you eagerly awaited the Disney “Star Wars Story” The Mandalorian.

Andrés Lozano's Baby Yoda

WARNING – SACRILEGE: It started as an off-planet spaghetti western (faithful right down to the soundtrack), but quickly (for me at least) degenerated into the “baby yoda show”, garnished with some impenetrable Mando law and totally impractical helmet decisions.

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Another Brick In The Wall

I vaguely remember folding lego in my original 365 journey back in 2011 and I am sure I remember following a set of diagrams. Looking back, the resource moved and has degenerated into low res Crease patterns:

Lego development

Un-flummoxed, I set about re-acquainting myself with the fold – an intense little 12×14 grid, special collapses for pegs and pits.


Having folded one, by gridding a square cut from an A3 sheet, initially 16×16 (because that division is easy) then slicing off 2 and 4 units from adjacent sides to get to 12×14. the resultant block was fiddly, but I got back into “the zone” and the collapses were tidy.


I then realised that I could waste less paper by dividing the short side of an A3 in 3rds, then 6ths, then 12ths, when squaring along the long side I had to remove only a small sliver off the end (quite efficient use of the sheet) – the resultant grid made a much more satisfying sized block.

building blocks

I set about making a few different colours, because.

another brick in the wall

All in all, they are just another brick in the wall. Mother, did it have to be so high?

1003: Flat-folding Sine Wave-based Corrugation

Exploring the notion of curve-following corrugations, I drew a section of a sine wave, placed a series of graduated squares diagonally along it, constructed diagonal bisectors and extended them to the bounding boxes. then tiled, mirrored and flipped copies to construct a sine-wave that extended over an A4 page:

flat-folding sine wave-based corrugation - crease pattern

Although tiny, I used a stylus to score the necessary creases then spent a couple of hours delicately collapsing it.

flat-folding sine wave-based corrugation - finished form

The first few creases did not cooperate but as more of the structure emerged, it reinforced the remaining collapses and it sort of started to look after itself. Explore further the Maths behind this technique in this published paper.

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1002: Flat-folding Curve-following Parabolic Corrugation

I had been exploring corrugations that followed curved lines, as you do, and sort of worked out that you needed a quadrilateral face with equidistant gutters either side, but my rough approximations were foldable but not pretty:

Flat-folding Curve-following Parabolic Corrugation

Then I saw a published paper, about the same thing, that suggested square/rhombi arranged diagonally to follow the line, organised diagonal-based accordion pleats, and a scale factor bigger of the same shape for the gutter creases and bingo, problem solved.

Flat-foldability is a thing, there is lots of maths in it, but it is so satisfying to have manually derived something that was subsequently proven (*flex*).

Flat-folding Curve-following Parabolic Corrugation CP
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1001: “Have the Lambs Stopped Screaming, Clarice?”

I have been a fan of the Hannibal Lecter thing since that was possible. Books, movies, series, love it all, but few things are more chilling than the original “Silence of the Lambs” movie. One of the central images of that movie, and a delicious cover art of the original book features the Deaths-head Hawkwing Moth (Acherontia atropos):

This model, designed and shared by Sebastian Limet, requires thin bi-colour paper. I had some duo paper that was strangely thick, but managed to work the design and surface the details that make this mode so striking.

Deaths-head Hawkwing Moth

Folded from a 40cm square of black/white duo unryu, I have enjoyed following a fold sequence that started at the Waterbomb base and goes sideways from there.

Concentrating on the important details here – wings, skull, abdomen and antennae, this relatively simple model is all style, genius design typical of the brilliance of Sebl designs.

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1000: How Green Was My Cactus

Episode 245, Mabel, confused about her husband’s sudden emergence from a coma as a woman, signs over her mortgage to Favio, the pool boy, and became a nun, briefly.

How green was my cactus - finished

I remember a radio serial comedy drama, it used to make me giggle and it was called “how Green was my Cactus?”, the inspiration for many of the hashtags as I chronicled this fold, over what has seemed like an age. Somehow this is relevant in the context that this is “never folded this before #1000” for me – an astonishing milestone that I do not take lightly. I knew I had to attempt something epic … be careful what you wish for.

I first saw pictures of Daniel Brown’s fold of Robert Lang’s “Cactus, Opus 680“, and then I saw some fold suggestions from Daniel and flirted with the idea of taking a crack at this fold.

How green was my cactus - views
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999: COVID-19

The story of the moment is COVID-19, and the unprecedented effects the global pandemic is having on “business as normal” across the world.

Xander Perrott's "Space Virus"

In out little corner of the planet, things continue to be weird. As a teacher, I am still at work, with 1700 boys in a fairly confined space. The current government position is that it is “business as usual” for schools, as we gear up to deliver online learning as part of our “continuity of learning” plan. I want to say I feel good about things, but we all deal with uncertainty our own way.

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