Barnaby Blockhead

Everyone called Charlie Brown “Blockhead”, a past Deputy Prime Minister continually is caught acting like one, so I began wondering what that would might like:

I had recently folded Boice Wong‘s astonishing pair of figures called “Emptyhead” (I named them Dumb and Dumber), so started there, and re-familiarised myself with the crease pattern, devising a smoother collapse (as I adopted the much criticised method of “parachuting” the last time).

I briefly toyed with the idea of posing him like Neo during Matrix’s groundbreaking “bullet time” scene, but decided to go simpler because he would be a … simple … soul.

The tricky bit was to use minimal paper for a neck, leaving enough of a pleat tube to sculpt a 2×2 solid cube, and explored that geometry a bit before settling on a scheme.

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1105: En Garde

It is a wonderful thing when designers share their processes, crease patterns and diagrams. Boice Wong is one that readily shares the CPs of his amazing designs, and when I saw “Sword and Shield V2”, I knew I had to give it a go:

Although I have been folding for decades, most of what i have folded has been from DIAGRAMS (step by step folding guides). By far the MAJORITY of origami out there does not exist as diagrams, but a larger proportion exist as CPs (crease patterns). I have been, over the last few years, working on my crease pattern solving skills.

This model is based on Boice’s 24 grid CP, and the collapse is relatively straight forward. Sometimes CPs give you crease orientations (red=mountain, blue=valley), sometimes not. The skill comes with deciding which creases to impose first as part of the collapse. Sometimes it does not matter, most it does, some you can derive based on “knock on effects” on one crease that causes the orientation of a sequence of subsequent creases. Sometimes it is pure witchcraft.

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1098: Dumb and Dumber

I love a clever conceptual fold, and “Emptyhead” designed by Boice Wong (origamibyboice) is a clever example of art designed to make you think:

The first of these models – “Emptyhead I” is a lovely character that has an empty box sitting on his shoulders for a head. This model, uses a variation of the original CP (crease pattern), and represents his dumber brother completely detaching his head from his shoulders.

The original, as folded by Boice, has a solid cube for a head, but I Macgyvered a scheme to make it an open 2x2x2 cube instead, so he is clearly related to his more sensible brother.

From a 32 grid, this model cleverly presents shoes, cuffed pants, dress shirt, tie, collar, overcoat with lapels, 1 regular arm and one extra long arm, part of which becomes the box head. Such a neat design, the paper cleans itself up and provides wraps to make the seams tidy on the arms also. All this with no cuts, folds only. I did resort to using a few white glue spots to keep seams and layers in place, but tried to keep it as au-naturel as it was possible while being able to pose him for archival purposes.

I must admit to obsessing about this version, having solved the CP for the first version fairly quickly (which really surprised me if I am honest). I just assumed this version would let me make the free box head, but as I discovered, turning the long pleated tube into an open-ended box, when there was so little paper was a major issue.

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1097: Jetlag

Those who know me realise I am just back from nearly 7 weeks in Europe. When asked how my jetlag is going, it is difficult to put the answer into words:

Spending so long in a different time zone, and getting good at waking early, being on the go to many and varied locations, then being subjected to 29ish hours transit to return to the other side of the planet is always a struggle, but this time it seems to have been worse. Bouts of fatigue followed by being wide awake at 3:30am are exhausting, as is my numb and seemingly empty brain.

This is my test fold of a new Boice Wong design. Boice is a crazy talented origami designer who released 2 versions of this model while I was overseas. He graciously released the CPs (crease patterns) and … they did not look too hard … but have taken nearly a week to decipher with my head in it’s current state.

Entitled “Empty Head 32×32 grid”, this is the first of 2 models in this series I intend to try, and feel a little guilty using up a blog number on the test fold, but I am so happy with how this little guy turned out I thought why not. When I have both figures, I will post again using a new blog number.

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1093: “An Origami Journey”

Avid noticers of this blog will realise that, since 2011, I have been rapidly expanding my abilities as a folder. Like most people, my first ever origami experience (apart from largely unsuccessful paper planes) was an origami crane (Tsuru) – taught to me as a boy of 11 yrs by a Japanese exchange student. A few years back I completed my task of learning how to fold Satoshi Kamiya’s “Ryujin 3.5”. This fold is not unrelated to both events:

Brandon Wong's "An Origami Journey"

Crane to complete Eastern Dragon is quite a journey, learning all sorts of new techniques and refining skills along the way and this fold celebrates that very journey. Originally designed and folded by Brandon Wong (@ThePlantPsychologist) – I first saw his fold on Instagram, and then photos of it on OrigamiDan (a discord server I am a member of) and vowed, one day, to fold it.

Brandon very kindly published the Crease Pattern along with photos of his fold, and right now I am rapidly learning to solve crease patterns so the perfect storm emerged after retiring I have time to tackle more ambitious folds.

Brandon Wong's "An Origami Journey" 360 view

After gridding the 90cm square, I set about laying in the exacting additional creases needed, including a puzzling pythagorean hinge line and some baffling level-shifters. Collapsing was a …. process. Apparently I “parachuted” the model – starting at the edges and working towards a bulging centre is termed parachuting (which is something I must address) until it more or less sat flat. After checking in with Brandon (isn’t the internet amazing) he suggested a fix for the only collapse kludge I had on his right shoulder.

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