Plan B (or “Home is where the hive is”)

I was approached by a mate mid 2018 with the idea of an original origami commission, but was given no real timeline (which for an OCD procrastinator like me is a recipe for a little crazy time.

framed picture

The end result, finished near the end of February 2019, is vastly different from how I had initially envisaged it. It was actually really hard to part with this one – so much creative energy went into it’s genesis.

the new happy owner
A new home, Happy Birthday Paige (albeit belated, sorry)
Depth, scale, detail.
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944: I Love Lamp

Playing with geometry, it got me thinking about lampshade forms. Correct me if I am wrong but there are the sort of “hang-down” and the “stand-up” types common?

Using 15cm Kami, I began doodling, the blue square form came first – a simple corrugation on the middle half of a sheet, folded in eighths only in the middle section it curves perfectly and creates a rather regal “ruff” – imagine nice/interesting/handmade paper and diffuse light in the middle of that.

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941: Home is where the Hive is…

Over the last few years I have played with origami tessellations – the theory of a repeatable pattern that interacts with other repeats (molecules) is fascinating and a real testament to the accuracy of the pre-folding. As part of another project, I have been exploring triangle grids, and a devilishly tricky to collapse hex-cell tessellation by Robert Lang he calls “Honeycomb”.

Robert Lang’s Honeycomb Tessellation

After folding this a number of times, and then schematicizing the molecule, I noticed that “cells” were deep and, due to the nature of the collapsed layers inside I did not think they were very tidy nor kept their shape nicely. All to often, in origami design, paper thickness is disregarded in the theoretical collapse – in this case hiding away most of the paper in canyons between cells deforms them in ugly ways.

Original Lang molecule (right) and my shallow modified one (left) – same size paper

I started playing with the corner mechanism, and discovered I could halve the height of the cell wall, making the tuck much less bulky and doubling the size of the resultant folded field on the same bit of paper. Additionally it held itself together nicely with edges that are easy to stabilise. With a little practice (I am sure my work colleagues thought me obsessed, given the number of times I folded this tessellated field) I was ready to scale up … well, down in truth as I folded a “tiny” triangle grid on my target mustard leather-grain paper and then set the corner widgets before collapse only to then realise that folding this small was a real challenge with my nerve damaged, fat clumsy fingers.

CP of molecule (red=Mountain, blue=Valley) Thick lines are visible edges, thin are hidden
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937: Diamond Bracelet

I hate throwing things out – having cut the biggest 2×1 rectangle possible from an A2 sheet, I was left with a lovely thin strip of scrap:

I was playing with a corrugation, with the view to design a millipede, but stumbled across a molecule that I then tessellated along the length. 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

883: (333/365) Cake Tin Liners

…then my wife casually asked if I could line some cake tins:

A simple fold, unequalled as a way of protecting a fruit cake from extended baking – the outer layer is 35cm square kraft paper, inner is 25cm greaseproof paper, they fit snugly in the tins. Later they will protect the maturing cake as it regularly bathes in rum. Continue reading

881: (331/365) Nativity Scene

People I work with know my OCD tendencies. When it was casually suggested that I might consider folding a Nativity scene for the end of year celebrations, it was a forgone conclusion that I would:

The assembled figures (each nearly 30cm tall) form quite a striking display – hopefully one that works for the display space – we shall see. Clearly Christmas is just around the corner, with this scene, it is beginning to look a lot like … well … christmas.

We have on the left, 3 kings, bringing gifts (bronze waterbombs are quite the thing this year). Centre there is an angel, looking over a mother, father and child. Bringing up the rear is a random shepherd … because … the scene needed balance.

869: (319/365) Love is Love

For what seems like an age, Australia has been torn apart by a divisive postal survey that the incumbent government decided was the best way to determine what the right thing to do was:

Ignoring world trends, common decency and justice, we “voted” on whether 2 people who love each other should be allowed to marry. Labelled the “Same Sex Marriage Debate”, it became an embarrassing mud slinging match as conservative bigots surfaced all sorts of reasons why this was a bad idea.

Thankfully, the majority (61%) of Australians said “Yes”, this (theoretically) now means the government has a MANDATE (hahaha, sorry, my inner 7 year old took over for a moment) to change our constitution so “Marriage” becomes a union between a loving couple, regardless of gender, orientation, hair colour, religion, IQ or political ideology. Continue reading

540: Parliament

Voting is something democratic societies hold as an important right. Some counties have compulsory voting, most allow citizens to choose whether they want to vote – all too often the result is the same – groups of opinionated, empty-headed people are elected to represent the views of the common people.540Parliament4

Anyone who knows me, realises I take the political piss whenever I can – voting only encouraged politicians to think they are more important than the rest of us, but they are just us, right, paid to argue (usually paid a LOT more that those of us who enjoy a good argument). 540Parliament

We organise candidates into “parties”, “alliances” and “coalitions”, pick “leaders” and rally behind them like their personalities are what really matters. All too often, in the end, we end up with the government we deserve. Continue reading

538: Sock and Buskin

After some fiddling, and diagramming (hopefully for the Sydney Folders Convention book) I am happy with the component parts of this original model:SockAndBuskin

The sock and buskin are two ancient symbols of comedy and tragedy. In Greek theatre, actors in tragic roles wore a boot called a buskin (Latin cothurnus) that elevated them above the other actors. The actors with comedic roles only wore a thin soled shoe called a sock (Latin soccus).

Melpomene, the muse of tragedy, is often depicted holding the tragic mask and wearing buskins. Thalia, the muse of comedy, is similarly associated with the mask of comedy and comic’s socks. Some people refer to the masks themselves as “Sock and Buskin”.

Inspired by face work on Eric Joisel’s Dwarf series, a single piece of paper becomes BOTH comedy and Tragedy – happy with the result.

Have a try with my diagrams: http://www.wonko.info/365origami/wp-content/uploads/SockAndBuskin-PeterWhitehouse_2.pdf

Segway V2

I was recently asked how I folded my Segway model because someone wanted one. I was loathed to part with my original and to be honest I had no idea, I just folded it, so decided to revisit the model (which seems unique in the origami community) and see if it can be methodologised:SegwayV2

Originally I folded in 32nds, but decided in re-working the model 24ths work better, and are easy folding once you have thirds. The balance was always consuming enough paper for the body to leave enough for the control stalk which splits at the top. My original cheated because the proportions were off ( so I sneakily cut a strip off to shorten it) but on 24ths, it just works. Continue reading

About Face

Faces are things we humans are born to recognise. We see them everywhere, we can recognise them with the barest of visual clues:

 Apparently even magpies do facial recognition, remembering the dive-bombing victim and their seeming boundary transgressions for years.

I am interested in the structure of faces, particularly how little paper manipulation is necessary to evoke a face that embodies an expression, the visual manifestation of attitude and mood.

Inspired by the work of Junior Fritz Jacquet, I am exploring how to fold faces from flat sheets without edge incursions, with the hope that it translates into tube-folded faces – we shall see. I have documented my progress below: Continue reading