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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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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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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993: Roman Diaz’s Deer

When asked by a colleague for a model that evokes memories of Japan, Miyajima’s Deer are right up there:

993 - Roman Diaz Deer

I started with a 45cm square of plain Kraft, and started folding – as much for therapy as it was for exploring a new model I am amazed I have never folded before.

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991: 2019-nCoV

Human Corona Virus is in the news, the news is alarming:

nCoV macquette

It is difficult to know the extent of the emergency, the effectiveness of treatment, the vector of infection, the spread and infection rate, the facts.

Social media and websites masquerading as “news” agencies love a good headline, and this mixed with Survivor in the jungle, celebrity red carpets, sham impeachment, Corona Virus “influencers” on instagram and fad diets makes navigating the facts difficult.

Public warnings and travel bans aside, what constitutes a pandemic? What is the appropriate response?

I took a 3×1 rectangle of white/natural Ikea Kraft and … well … doodled and came up with an all too familiar image – a face-masked regular person. In an odd bout of synchronicity, Sebastian Limet (@sebl) had the same idea. His fold, as usual has lots of character.

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990: They come at night … mostly

I will admit to being a sci-fi nerd, few movies did it for me like the original “Alien” movie, directed by Ridley Scott, designed by Hans Reudi Geiger.

The truly original mixture of a genuinely terrifying xenomorph, claustrophobic and grimy working space ship and stellar cast makes the movie, at least in my mind, perfect.

Donny_Origami's facehugger

Prior to that, space was clean (painfully white and tidy, according to the Star Wars, Blakes7, Flash Gordon and Dr Who visions), in Alien gear looked used, people were pissed off and tired, and we were introduced to a much loved and never duplicated alien.

Donny_Origami's facehugger attack

H.R. Geiger imagined a life-cycle – from egg, to facehugger (this beastie) that implants an embryo deep in a host, chest burster through to adult killing machine. Scarily insectoid, acid for blood, no eyes, perfect.

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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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Their Lives In Our Hands

Much has been made in the media about the current bush fire situation in Australia. Truth is the scale of devastation is impossible to grasp, in terms of sheer acreage of scorched earth, number of homes lost, lives lost and livelihoods ruined. When we add the effects on environment, habitat and wildlife (flora and fauna), the effects of the 2019/2020 summer will have long-reaching and potentially permanent ramifications:

their lives in our hands

I want to say that our leaders are on top of this, but have never had confidence in politicians, and am not convinced any can see past getting re-elected to make the hard decisions necessary for our continued existence. Indeed, when our PM chooses to go on holiday during the worst of it, when he and his colleagues continue to deny climate change, despite the overwhelming scientific evidence. They display a vandalistic attitude to environmental policy, and offer reckless abandon to fossil fuels and non-sustainability.

Their lives in our hands. “They” are our children, their children, the animals and plants that make up the biosphere in which we live. The “they” are US.

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986: Meta

I love meta – that examination of self-reference is great brain food, and this fold designed by Neelish Kumar fits nicely into that philosophical space:

Neelish Kumar's Origamist Nightmare

Nominally named “Origamist’s Worst Nightmare”, it is a place I have been – being so into a model at the expense of the materials, having it disintegrate in my hands as I work it.

The more observant of you will notice a despairing folder, paper ripped along a much-worked crease. Look closer, the crease pattern is Eric Joisel’s “Dwarf“, a particular favourite that I have ruined many a sheet mastering.

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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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Year of the Rat

Most cultures have myths and legends, developed over centuries, to explain how things work. The Chinese Zodiac and New Year is at odds with the western Julian calendar, but none the less interesting:

Joisel's Rat

2020 is the Year of the Rat – interestingly my socials are full of mouse diagrams, but for me there are few iconic origami rats, and this is my favourite – designed by Eric Joisel, I just love the character this chap presents.

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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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982: Satoshi Kamiya’s “Tiger”

I have been on a mission for months now to try and render a tiger as realistically as I can in paper. Apart from being feline in shape, tigers have stripes – finding a model that has these stripes was difficult:

Kamiya's Tiger

I bought Satoshi Kamiya’s latest book because of the tiger diagrams it contained – on flicking through the 200+ steps I initially thought it too difficult to try. But try I did, initially with large format red-natural Ikea Kraft paper. I was surprised that I was able to make it through the most torturous steps, so set about re-folding it with black/natural, ensuring the black was the stripes, natural was the residual body colour.

The genius of this design is the subtle and precise control of both sides of the sheet – the stripes are the result of folds, not cuts. The model requires you manipulate raw edges (the sheet border) fan-folded, while wrestling all the other details (legs, head, tail) from the INSIDE of the sheet – quite amazing.

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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

Pride

…so, as part of a commission, I decided to explore the concept of “pride”, using a feline metaphor:

I folded a family of lions, designed by Lionel Albertini, and then posed them in a Daiso display box. “Pride” is an interesting concept – we see the lioness, as the head of the family, provider, strong, carer. We see cubs looking up to her. We see the Lion, in the background, as supporter and partner.

pride

I like the minimalist composition of this piece. I used crumpled VOG paper as “grass” and have resisted adding any other decoration, because everything I have tried added makes the family grouping less powerful.

I hope the client likes it, we shall see.