Thursday, May 18, 2006

Coyote - Montroll

This is Coyote from John Montroll's North American Animals In Origami (1995).

The model holds together well, and stands nicely. I'm not quite sure about the proportions of it though, as the front legs are far heavier than the rear ones. Are coyotes really that front heavy?

Still, in spite of the undesirable proportions, the model stands rather dignified and its head has a perky appearance provided by the tall ears.

The model is folded from a standard 15cm square sheet of Origami paper.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Bird of Peace - Shafer

This is a Bird of Peace Pop-Up card by Jeremy Shafer. The model is published in Origami to Astonish and Amuse (2001), but you can also find a PDF of the instructions on his barf site here.

The model is folded from a custom base, with the bird body made from a kind of mini Bird base. The model definitely makes nice use of the colour difference between sides of a sheet of Origami paper. I folded the model from a standard 15cm sheet of Origami paper.

The card makes a nice little add-on to a gift for someone, and looks great when left open for display.

The instructions also include a variation of the card, whereby instead of a bird inside the card there is a heart.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Frog - Yoshizawa

This is Frog by Akira Yoshizawa from his work, Creative Origami (year unknown). I don't have the words to describe the greatness that is Akira Yoshizawa, and thanks to the New York Times, I don't have to. You can read Yoshizawa's two-page obituary here.

I picked up the book this model came from because after Yoshizawa passed away, I realized that I wanted to try again to make models by him. Freefolding models has never been a strong suit for me, but I'm getting better at it and I think that you'll see more of them folded by me in the future. It was this book that made me want to try Momotani's Rabbit that has some freefolding.

Sadly, I don't do this model justice. But that's the difficulty with models designed by Yoshizawa. They're deceptively simple, and yet they require such a creative touch that you have to add something of yourself to them to get them to come out right. It's not at all just a matter of angle bisecting folds. You can view models actually folded by him displayed at Yurindo Bookstore here.

If I remember correctly, I folded the model from something that resembled a Waterbomb base. You're supposed to shape the head so it's a frog face, but it just didn't work for me. Some day I'll get it right! The model was folded from a standard 15cm sheet of Origami paper.

I've had a hard time finding books by Akira Yoshizawa, so this is my only one. If you do find one somewhere, be sure to treasure it.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Eagle - Lang

This is Eagle from Robert Lang's The Complete Book of Origami: Step-by-Step Instructions in Over 1000 Diagrams (1988).

The model is folded from an isosceles triangle that is really just half a square cut from corner to corner. Its base is sort of like half a frog base, but then stretched similar to a stretched bird base.

The triangle was cut from a standard 15cm square sheet of Origami paper, drawn from corner to corner.

The model ends up very small, and because of its proportions I think it ends up looking a little hawk-like.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Rabbit - Nishikawa

This is Rabbit by Seiji Nishikawa from the book Works of Seiji Nishikawa (2003). This is a Gallery OrigamiHouse publication and they are always great quality manufactured books.

The model is very cute. Nishikawa has a nice way of creating cartoon like animals out of paper that just scream adorable. Like his Panda, this model was folded out of two 15cm square sheets of Origami paper; one for the head and one for the body.

The head of the model is a little difficult to perch correctly on the body, but it's possible to do it without any adhesive substance. The model stands very well and has such a cute pose.

Diagrams for this model were also published in Origami Tanteidan Magazine issue 50.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Horse - Montroll (Myth)

This is the Horse from John Montroll's Mythological Creatures and the Chinese Zodiac in Origami (1996). The model is very different from my favourite horse, but I still like it.

The model was folded from a custom base, which was unusual for Montroll at the time and shows an interesting departure for him. Montroll has mentioned in his books that he doesn't (or at least didn't back then) design models, but instead modifies and grafts on folds from various ideas and other models. That is a totally valid technique for creating new models, and perhaps requires even more innovation and creativity. It makes me wonder how he came up with this horse design.

This horse is a little heavy on the layers in the front chest/legs of the of model, and a little light on the back. But the model holds together well, and stands nicely. The model was folded from a 15cm square of Aqua Blue Origami paper.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Yoda - O'Hanlon

This is Yoda by Dr Stephen O'Hanlon. You can view a PDF of the instructions of the model here, compliments of his personal web site.

This is a very good early attempt at Yoda. Although the proportions are off (he's a little tall and thin) I like the model. It's folded from a blitz with the flaps rabbit-eared. Then a mountain kite fold creates the head and what will become the arms and legs.

The model doesn't really freestand well when made from a 15cm sheet of Origami paper as seen here. But I think if I folded from something larger, I could shape out the body and he'd stand okay. The model also could work well as a finger puppet.

I did play around with the design a bit once, and ended up with a shorter version with much bigger ears. He ended up looking like a Gremlin (well, the Gizmo pre-Gremlin Mogwai), which now makes me think that might be something fun to try making.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Maestro Yoda - Caboblanco

Here are the Brothers Yoda :)

Okay, they're not brothers, but Yoda could have had a twin, no? This model is called Maestro Yoda, and was designed by Javier Caboblanco. You can find a PDF of the instructions for this model here, compliments of the AsociaciĆ³n EspaƱola de Papiroflexia.

It is the easiest Origami version of Yoda out there, and I think equally the cutest. The model uses two sheets of paper, one for the head and one for the body. In this case, that works perfectly, because you can give Yoda a nice green skin tone and make sure his robes are a good desert brown.

The head of the model is folded from a Bird base, with his ears what would normally be the head and tale of a traditional crane. You're supposed to crease his face onto the paper, but that doesn't work well with paper the size I used so I just sort of left it up to your imagination. I think you could draw on a cute Yoda face though, if you're so inclined.

The body of the model just sort of folds the head into it securely, so no glue or tape is needed. There are some basic crimp folds to make the arms/sleeves.

I folded these two Yodas each from two sheets of 7.5cm square Origami paper (essentially one sheet of 15cm square paper cut into quarters). There is supposed to be a paper cane (or walking stick) made from a third piece of paper, but I decided to leave that out.

Just think, now you can make unlimited Yodas!

There are two more Yodas I'll be posting on this site, so watch for them!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Star of Peace - Shafer

This model is called Star of Peace, by Jeremy Shafer. It's from his book Origami to Astonish and Amuse (2001). I bought the book sort of on a whim, thinking it might be interesting, and was totally blown away by its contents.

First off, the book just looks great. I don't know what kind of paper and ink/toner they used, but it has got such a great look and feels so good to the touch that it's something that is just a joy to work from. As far as its contents go, you'll find some unique models in there that you just can't believe he came up with. Watch this blog for them in the future. Check out for some sample diagrams of things in the book (or things that didn't quite make it in).

This model definately falls into the "astonish" category. You might not believe it, but it's actually folded from a single sheet of paper, with no cutting or tearing! I folded it from a 25cm square sheet of paper backed gold foil. I folded the model, and I'm still amazed at its construction. Somehow, he was able to create four mini Preliminary bases that have enough freedom in each of them to fold a traditional crane out of. If you look closely, you can see that each of the cranes are connected to the base by the one wing and one side of the body.

You really do have to use foil for this one if you're folding it this size, because he hides a lot of extra paper inside the neck and tale of each of those cranes. You can fold the base into whatever you want, and he suggests inflating it into a box-like shape. I had a hard time with that though, since foil is tough to fold back on the creases cleanly (I tried and that's why it looks a little rough). Instead, I opted for a kind of star shape base. He also suggests that you could fold the base into a large crane, with the baby cranes all over it. I would like to attempt that one next time.

I also think it would be interesting to try other models instead of cranes from the mini Preliminary bases. I'll have to come up with something to post here.