Showing Off

Our school has large display cases. I have kilograms of origami at home, in showboxes, tidy tubs, cupboards, garbage bags and display cases … one thing led to another:

library display 2019

My aim with this display to to show the variety of forms modern Origami takes, from traditional, figurative, geometry and abstract. Additionally I have included 14 different dragons, a current fascination – can you find them all?

I feature some of my favourite pieces, designed by legends such as Satoshi Kamiya, Robert Lang, Eric Domaine, Francis Ow, Ronald Koh, Kade Chan, Eric Joisel, Brian Chan, Jason Ku and more.

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948: “Snow Crystal” Hex-box

I have been looking for tidy self-contained folds based on A4 paper that hides the raw edges, so I could try my lovely thistle-based hand-made paper (from the ladies at Paper Makers and Artists):

snow flake box complete

This box looks like a traditional fold, but seems to be credited fairly recently to Sweet Paper, a paper art shop/tutorial site I stumbled across in my musings. Not sure of the attribution however, as many of their featured designs I have seen (and folded) from other artists.

lid and base. Lid is 3/7ths of the sheet, base is the rest

The paper, with lovely rough chopped scotch thistle fibres and other pulp is fairly crisp, fairly thin but had raggedy (beautiful) decal edges that I did not really want to have to chop off.

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916: Zhen Xian Bao (Traditional Chinese Thread and Needle Book)

Interestingly, paper folding developed independently in most countries that made paper. In China, traditional folding included objects like this:

This is a modern interpretation of a Zhen Xian Bao – a traditional thread case. Even cursory research on teh interwebs reveals astonishing combinations of these little compartments, nested in other compartments.

This fold was designed by Paula Versnick, and has 7 separate compartments of varying size, that all lock together into a charming little book. Continue reading

910: (360/365) After Christmas Sales

Retailers really have a nerve when you think about it. Right up to Christmas they hike up their prices. We dutiful drones pay top dollar for loot which we wrap and give away. Come “Boxing Day” prices plummet in almost obscene ways and it can get hectic as people clamber for bargains:

We went early, with a list and an idea of what we would regularly pay for the items on that list. In, bought (from the then still full shelves and racks), and out again in an hour and a half – this is the stuff of legends. Continue reading

873: (323/365) Elephant Trophies

When an orange clown decides that rich stupid people should be allowed to hunt wild animals for fun, hack bits of them off and use them as trophies it makes me cross:

When that same “ass hat” orange clown then tweets that he might change an existing law to allow this banned activity to happen again (presumably so his stupid rich family can go shoot things again) it SHOULD make the world furious. When will ENOUGH BE ENOUGH? Continue reading

842: (292/365) Divided Bowl

Doodling with a traditional birdbase, I noticed a way to open it up so there were 4 equal sized partitions that I could get to go flat:

Researching a little, it seems Jun Maekawa pioneered this, and also suggested a lovely corner locking mechanism that made the whole structure quite stable.

I can see this as actually useful – it is really efficient as a use of paper so you could feasibly make one that is the right size for nuts, lollies etc for parties.

806: (256/365) The Gift that keeps Giving

‘Tis marking season (I am a teacher) and I hate marking – do not get me wrong, I love designing assessment, just hate having to mark it, especially under ridiculous deadlines:

This is Xiaoxian Huang’s gift box – a delicate little fold that I had to modify heavily to get the lid to fit given I think the design does not allow for paper thickness. Still it is a lovely thing that is designed to highlight duo paper – expusing a “ribbon” of it all the way round, as if it is gift-wrapped. Continue reading

785: (235/365) Pentagonal Masu

A Masu (or box) was traditionally square and used to measure rice in Japanese kitchens. These days, masu are typically used to sip Sake out of:

Having mastered David Brill’s Square Masu, I thought it time to try the pentagonal one. Apparently the pentagonal masu exists only in Origami circles – this makes sense as the woodworking skill necessary to make this in timber breaks my brain.

Page division into 6ths (to allow overlap/join) then gentle faceting and a magic corner hinge joint results in a lovely 3d shape that feels like it has volume.

I used thickish paper and found some of the internal collapses tough work to make them behave and sit tidily but overall it is a fin fold because you really have to think through how it works before trying the collapse.

740: (190/365) Rubic’s Cube

Long before there were “fidget spinners”, Pokemon and “Pogs” there was a craze that swept me away when it first hit the market. A Hungarian designer called Erno Rubic devised a cube, subdivided up into 3x3x3 cubies that all slid on each other in layers:

I instantly had to have one (well, in truth I had 9, including a triangular, circular and 4x4x4 one that I still have). Continue reading

729: (179/365) A Whole Lotta Love

Searching for daily folds, O came across an interesting 6 part modular cube that has much development potential:

each face features a colour changed heart but I imagine that with a little inventiveness you could fashion diamonds, spades etc, or other things as the basic module solves the problem of liberating colour-changed flaps rather nicely. Continue reading

702: (152/365) Burning Down The House

I have been a fan of Talking Heads pretty well as long as it was possible to be one. “Burning down the house” remains one of the great songs of all time:

This is Martin Wall’s “Matchbox”, an ingenious model folded from a single, much tortured, piece of paper. A lovely little life-size matchbox, folded from a 50x17cm rectangle (3×1), it comprises an outer tray and a movable tray that slides open and closed. Continue reading