When our kids were little tackers, we went on a summer holiday to Mon Repos, North Queensland, to see the turtles laying and hatching:
During the night, exhausted loggerhead, green and leatherback turtles haul themselves out of the surf, up the beach, gig holes and lay eggs – on the same beach they, themselves hatched from years earlier.
When I first saw this turtle, I assumes it MUST have been papercraft – you know, glue, cuts – very neat but none the less it could NOT be a single bit of paper.
Browsing my JOAS Tanteidan Convention books, to me delight, I stumbled across Satoshi Kamiya’s instructions (HUNDREDS of them) for the turtle (not sure what version) and knew I had to give it a try.
The shell corrugation/tesselation alone is a masterpiece, but then you wrap the unused paper around and inside (forming an internal support for the shell to keep it peaked) and form flippers and a lovely head.
I am so thrilled with this, my first fold – I am itching to fold it again, but cannot for the moment justify the nearly 8 hours necessary, to then have 2 turtles in the house. I cannot imagine folding it smaller – I have seen it tiny but I am not sure my fat clumsy fingers would let me achieve it as so many of the shaping manoeuvres are millimetre precise when folded from a 60cm sq.
I love this model, it takes pride of place in my paper shrine. I have resisted the urge to tape it up solid, as it holds it’s form without assistance – genius design.
…what can one do with a turtle I ask?
I was reading the chapter on “box pleating” in Robert Lang’s “Origami Design Secrets – 2nd Ed” (one of my cherished origami books) and came across the chapter “homework” which is this Organist seated at her Wurlitzer:
This model is astonishing for a bunch of reasons. The design is clever – one piece of paper to fashion the player and the instrument, the details of both the player and instrument are well controlled, efficiently use paper and are clearly recognisable.
I upscaled, starting with a 128x32cm piece of brown Kraft paper, used a tape measure to lay in the landmark creases (although I could have folded them, it would have resulted in much more disfiguring creases in the end model so I am glad I did). In retrospect, working much smaller would have been very difficult with my fat, clumsy fingers as some of the pleating becomes very fiddly indeed (32nds and 64ths)
Initially, working with paper on this scale is problematic – simple things like “fold in half” take on epic proportions and introduce inaccuracies which seem slight at the time but compound in such a convoluted model.
There was an “ahh” moment when the box that is the body of the organ swings into place, making the keyboards and footpedals slip into place that was very satisfying.
I enjoyed folding this model, probably will not fold it again, but learned a bit about paper properties and wrangling pleats that will make future folds better I think.
What to do with her? there is the question – the resultant model is quite large (16x14x14cm) and in some places one layer thick (others much more so), but it is stable and surprisingly strong. It even has a music stand atop the organ that even “Barry Morgan” would appreciate. Suggestions?
Now I am not an experienced modular folder, but this is relatively new to me and yee gods it is interesting. Having Parent-torture interviews tonight I got home in time to do the final assembly for this little beauty:
Designed by Jorge Pardo, it takes 60 – yes children, that is right SIXTY squares of paper in delicious and bendy ways.
Each module is fairly easy (if a little fiddly) to make, coupling them takes nimble fingers and a bone folder to lock the layers – bunches of 5 make stars of a spoke, each spoke unit connects to each adjacent one via 2 arms, it more or less forms itself.
This has taken me ages, literally hours – over the last few days inbetween other models but it is hoopy. My FIRST FOLDS were white, but I decided a while into the model that it had to be done in colour, using small Washi paper squares provided by Mary Cassidy made the job easy (thanks Mrs Cass!).
You may applaud now.