1039: Jang Yong Ik’s “Smilodon”

Whilst being eliminated from the Origami Tournament, I am still interested in the models being folded by surviving contestants. This week’s challenge was Jang Yong Ik’s :Smilodon” – a “sabre tooth tiger” like critter from time gone past:

Jang Yong Ik's "Smilodon"

The fold sequence is intense – this model ate up a 70cm square of black/natural duo Kraft paper like few other models. The body is thick and heavy, some sections had dozens of layers.

Jang Yong Ik's "Smilodon" view

I took my time, considered as I went, determined to succeed on my first fold. In retrospect, using thinner paper would have an advantage in that the layer management would be easier, but the legs would be flimsy and require wire supports – tough for a designer to distribute paper structurally.

Jang Yong Ik's "Smilodon" scale

In the end, we have a crouching toothy fossil, it was an interesting exercise and entrants did some good shaping to personalise their folds. I enjoyed exploring the sequence.

1038: Eastern Dragon

Francesco Massimo shared his design for a cutie little “Eastern Dragon” on social media, and I knew I had to try it:

Massimo's Eastern Dragon

Folded from a 35cm square of Daiso green Washi, this little critter comes in at about 17cm nose to tail tip – a very efficient design.

Massimo's Eastern Dragon Views

Fairly simple folding, lots of half fish bases and some accordion sinks to hide away most off the paper while still leaving flaps for legs, horns and head – clever designing.

Massimo's Dragon - scale

This was a welcome distraction from marking and I will probably re-fold him using duo paper as there are clever colour changes exposing the belly and other details.

1025: Polly Wants a Cracker! Now!!!!!

The post title reminds me of the punchline of a favourite joke: “What does a 10 tonne parrot say?”:

Gastronis Skeleton

This is a “Diatryma gigantea” (aka “Gastronis”) skeleton, designed by Mase Eiichiro based on fossil records. In real life this beastie would have been scary indeed.

Gastronis Skeleton views 1

Nicknamed “murder bird”, it seems paelontologists are divided as to whether it was a herbivore, carnivore or omnivore – it was HUUUGE – like 7ft tall, and the musculature marks around the beak suggest it had a titanic bite. Curiously it has no other “predator” characteristics – like a hook at the end of the beak or shredding talons on it’s feet, making it a confusing snarly. The first skeletal reconstruction of fossil remains happened in the early 1920s, and the result looked more like a 9ft emu (seems they had parts of a number of different animals in the one model).

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1024: Grogu, Mando in training

For those up to date with “The Mandolorean”, the last episode reveal was “baby yoda’s” name – turns out it was “Grogu”:

Sebl's Grogu

Although loosely a space western, Mando is largely cutie Grogu and as many Star Wars references as is possible to fit into a loose plot (my opinion).

Sebl's Mando Helmet

Sebastien Limet designed a 2-part Grogu and published video tutorial on his Fakebook account – head and body are separate (I cheated and glued mine together – ssshhh!). The next day he did the same for a Mandalorian helmet – I made mine a little goth. More eye candy follows…

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1022: Ryu Jin 1.64

This started as pure procrastination – I had marking and reporting to do but ….

ryujun 1.64

Folded from a “live guide” photodiagram series produced by Daniel Brown, as part of a channel in a discord from another planet, irresistible as it is yet another variation of eastern dragon I knew I HAD to fold,

ryujun 1.64 development

This little fellow is nearly naked – apart from some glue to hold in a wire spine and wires for arms and legs, he is otherwise folded only (hence some of the wayward seams and flaps). I quite like this unfinished appearance and think he will stay as is.

ryujun 1.64 views

Folded from 90cm natural Kraft, it starts with a therapeutic 64 grid on the diagonal and goes to hell in a handbasket from then on. The basic folding is quite straight forward (as a Ryu master), this variation is a bit of a mashup between a 1.2 and the head of a 2.1 – the result is wonderfully complex and beautifully “Kamiya” in intent.

ryujun 1.64 scale

I decided to fold it in plain (both sides same) paper as the bi-color fold has a large gash of reverse side colour along the underside – I have used this to effect in both a 1.2 and a 2.1, so thought I would go differently this time. Interestingly (to me) this little chappie is folded with a sheet exactly 1/4 the size (and from the same paper roll) as my original 3.5 (a little Ryu Jin nerdistry there).

1016: World Origami Days – Bahamut

World Origami Days is a period end October-beginning November that is an international celebration of Origami. I decided to try a super complex model (fold until it fails) and successfully folded Satoshi Kamiya’s “Divine Dragon (Bahamut)” on the first attempt:

Satoshi Kamiya's Bahamut

Rarely does a first fold work out but I kept folding and it did, much to my surprise and delight. The fold sequence is particularly punishing and describes a bit of an enigma of a model – the balance between paper thinness and size. I chose 80gsm 100cm square Kraft paper and at this size/thickness it was tough going in places indeed. The body and legs are incredibly thick compared to the single layer wings – a bit of a puzzle if you wanted to fold it small.

Satoshi Kamiya's Bahamut Views

A “Bahamut” is a monster from the “Final Fantasy” franchise, and is an odd mix of a lizard, dragon, Godzilla…thing.

The detail here is terrifying. Thick, muscular 4-toed feet, thick dragonny tail, chest sporting a 6 pack (make that a whole slab), arms with 4 claws, complex and snarly horned head and glorious wings with an extra set of hands atop them – quite a formidable beastie.

This fold took me the best part of the weekend to complete, and I used a little glue (shhhh!) to tidy gaping seams and a little MC to stabilise his (? only they would know the gender) posture and basic body morphology.

Satoshi Kamiya's Bahamut Scale and detail

If I were to fold this again I would use thinner prettier paper, but there are sections where front and back are visible, so the model is not really suited to duo paper – perhaps double tissue or unryu. I had forgotten how satisfying Satoshi Kamiya models are to fold, and how wonderful it is to just get lost in the folding process (I took no progress pics, soz) – it was terrific paper-based therapy. There are so many complex techniques here to isolate and separate body elements, genius design indeed.

997: Western Dragon

Western dragons are an attempt to make sense of a mythical flying beast – the whole wing-thing appears necessary, and the morphology is usually based on a giant lizard:

Redpaper's Western Dragon

This is a test fold of Redpaper’s “Western Dragon”, well my rendering of it at least, from his forthcoming book.

I have taken liberties, having folded it a couple of times to try and work out the most dense parts of the design, and required sheet size.

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996: Eastern Dragon

Currently editing a book including designs by “Redpaper”, I decided to road-test his “Eastern Dragon” – an intense fold on the diagonal of a square.

I tried this with a 35cm square of japanese tissue and was unable to realise most of the detail, so scaled up to a 65cm square of duo kraft and found it more manageable.

Red Paper's Eastern Dragon

There is a bot to take in here, the front claws are cute, the facial expression reminds me of the chameleonic monster from “Monsters Inc” but I think this model is really challenging on a few levels.

The back legs are an intense ride that results in fairly clumsy toes, but it is free standing on them in tripod and the rather odd tail. The neck is bent back and forward to point the head forward. If I were to re-fold this, I think large format double tissue would help, and there is so much paper in the body that I am sure you could make that more textured.

The fold sequence contains some mystery meat also – the formation of the legs is a bit smooshy (or it was for me), and the antlers were also tricksey, but it was an interesting ride. Keep your eyes out for the new book – there are some fab folds in it for experienced folders.

994: Mushu

Riccardo Foschi frequently shares crease patterns for his new designs on social media. When I saw “Mushu” I knew I had to try and fold it:

Foschi CP

It is rare to find a “happy” dragon, but this one beams a positive energy that makes you smile. There is lots of detail to take in – the head has branched horns, smiling eyes, lovely colour-changed curly whiskers, nostrils, teeth, a lovely wiggly tongue, lower jaw and a beard. A lovely set of back spikes, each leg has 3 toes and the beautiful fan tail caps off the beastie.

Mushu

Made over a period of a week, from 5x 2:1 rectangles of odd spotty black Ikea Kraft. Sections form variously tail, legs, body and head modules, all of which ingeniously interlock without the need for glue. Riccardo also states that it can be made with a single 10:1 rectangle, but I thought that would be too wasteful when cut from a paper roll, so decided on the modular approach.

My problem with crease patterns is that, although they show the major creases, they do not really hint on the shaping or fold order. The head, in particular, took me a while to sort out. I decided, contrary to the designers photo, to fold the legs differently – I think they look more natural this way (but I folded forward, backward, forward and back many times before deciding on this configuration).

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Caption Competition #1

Caption this, win the brave knight.

I need a caption

“Knight” designed by Neal Elias, “RyuJin 2.1” designed by Satoshi Kamiya, “Sword” and “Tin Opener” designed by me.

987: Ryu Zin Junior 2.1

Rounding out my Ryu journey, I decided to use a small scrap of Kozo left over from another project to fold Jason Ku’s Ryu Zin Junior 2.1:

Jason Ku Ryu Zin 1.2

While sharing some of the nomenclature of the Satoshi Kamiya chinese dragon series, this little chap is markedly different on every level. I found a set of photo diagrams lovingly annotated by Daniel Brown, and thought I would give is a whirl.

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Chinese Dragon in Repose

My usual line “if you find interesting paper, get it and I will make you something out of it” has been the start of many fascinating journeys:

Mikiller觅晨’s modular dragon

Peter and Majella travelled to Japan, and found some lovely paper – one, a sheet of hand-made natural Kozo with botanical inclusions screamed out for something delicate and textured. I had intended to return to Mikiller觅晨’s modular dragon, having already folded it large, I thought it might be interesting to fold it tiny and trap it in a shadowbox frame.

The handover
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985: Satoshi Kamiya’s Ryu Jin 2.1

Some folds are quite the journey, Ryu Jins are no exception. I have already folded the 1.2 and the 3.5, but had not tried the 2.1, relegating it to the “when I have time” pile:

2 point 1 - model

Holiday time is a time of recharge, paper folding therapy is my thing so I embarked on the super-duper-complex journey with HUGE bits of paper. I decided to fold it in 2 halves (two 140 x 70 cm rectangles of red duo Ikea Kraft paper).

2 point 1 - CP

As a bit of paper engineering, Ryu are masterpieces of fitting so much on a single square. The 2.1 is laid out in a similar morphology to the 3.5, with 2 halves of the model on opposite edges of the paper. The Ryu 1.2, in contrast, uses the diagonal and is symmetrical about that.

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983: Ryu Jin 2.1 – Tail

I have begun the (some say perilous) journey to realise Satoshi Kamiya’s Ryu Jin 2.1. I have previously achieved the head of this model, and there is more work to do to become familiar with the other components, but this is a nice next step:

2.1 tail

The tail of the 2.1 is different to the 1.2 and the 3.5 in that it is more of a fan blade, to get there, you need to fold a small section of the scale field, and pack away a bunch of the paper inside the body.

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T-Rex Revisited

I love a well-designed model and Fumiaki Kawahata’s T-Rex is no exception:

Trex

Folded from a 50cm square of medium green Tant paper, this lovely snapper has a splendid mobile jaw with teeth, fabulous feet and tail, and frustratingly useless front legs. The result is a fantastic free-standing model that looks simultaneously cute and terrifying.

The model structure is intense, this is the smallest I have tried it, and at this scale the pre-creasing is torturous (to be polite). The folds that raise the teeth from a series of accordion pleats are ingenious and tough work for fat clumsy fingers.

I have folded this before, and will probably return to it, as it is a great exercise in accuracy and patience – really good fold-therapy for a fragged and shagged brain.

trex view

974: Xiao’s Styracosaurus

I have had a partially completed test fold of Chen Xiao’s “Styracosaurus” on my desk for months – in truth I started it before we went on holidays (8ish weeks ago) and just sort of discarded it part way through the fold sequence.

chen xiao styracosaur

Returning from holidays, having tied up the editing of the new origami book, I decided rather than discard the model I should finish it, and am glad I did. this model’s structure is amazing, the sensitive use of colour and complex collapses make this a challenging fold.

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969: Little Dragon

One of the things I have the privilege to be involved with is the proof-reading/editing of books from origamishop.com. As such, I get a chance to make changes in diagrams and instruction annotations, and test fold:

Chen Xiou's Tiny Dragon

This is “Tiny Dragon”, a beautiful little model from a forthcoming book by Chen Xiou.

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Tazzie the Lotus Dragon

…so I was approached by a friend who wanted to spring a surprise on his partner for her birthday. He said she liked dragons, immediately my shagged and fragged mind (marking makes me a disagreeable troll) jumped and I committed a huge bit of metallicised paper to fold Shuki Kato’s “Western Dragon” … because I had achieved it once in the 5 times I had attempted it. That failed.

Tazzie scale

Not deterred, I chose a lovely sheet of block printed blue mulberry paper (printed 2 tone with gold and white lotus flowers), cut the biggest square I could and set about folding Satoshi Kamiya’s “Ancient Dragon” (having achieved it once (in 7 attempts) – what could go wrong?

tazzie's new home

As it turns out, all went to plan – even thought he paper was smaller than recommended, I was able to tease, gradually, all the design features and “Tazzie” was born.

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Spotted Ryu

Playing with Hieu Dang’s money Ryujin, I decided to try and fold it money-size, but with fewer bits of paper:

spotty ryu

I measured a korean dong note, then cut bits of paper 3×1, 2.5×1, 2.5×1 (body segments) and 3 note sized bits (head, 2xlegs) and set to folding.

a nice pair

The scale was tiny, it took about 3 weeks on and off and the result is lovely. With the Hanji ryu it is like a perfect pair – I imagine the larger is the female, the smaller spotty one is the male.

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964: Tetsuya Gotani’s Ankylosaurus

Being most of the way though the proof-reading of a new book by Tetsuya Gotani, I decided to test-fold his Ankylosaurus:

Tetsuya Gotani's Ankylosaurus

The final model, folded with 50cm printed Ikea Kraft paper, is a freaky cow-like critter covered in spikes with a club-like tail and a cow-like head.

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