Ushering in the Year of the Dog

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The lunar new year in 2018 fell on 16 Feb, ushering in the Year of the Dog.  As usual, I folded some origami dogs to mark the occasion, and to make an ecard for Chinese New Year.  Origami-wise, the folder is spoilt for choice when it comes to dogs.  So came the task of narrowing down my choices.

More than a decade ago, my family adopted a pair of dogs that were abandoned at a pet hotel.  One was a golden retriever and the other a bull terrier.  They have since passed on, but it is a natural choice to want to fold these 2 dogs in their memory.  I had folded a retriever by Satoshi Kamiya before, so that became one choice.  I had difficulties finding a design of a bull terrier that I liked, so I decided to adapt a terrier designed by Roman Diaz.  So here is the outcome.

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Golden retriever by Satoshi Kamiya, bull terrier by Roman Diaz.  Photograph by Pek Wan Sze

 

Being spoilt for choice, I decided to fold a few more designs.  It was a tough choice, so in the end I settled for another two.  The first is a cocker spaniel again designed by Satoshi.  I particularly like its upturned head.

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Cocker spaniel by Satoshi Kamiya

The other dog that I chose in the end is a cute papillon designed by Hideo Komatsu, shown here.

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Papillon by Hideo Komatsu

I also folded some simple puppies for a project (which will be the subject of another post), here’s the preview.

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So a big bow-wow for the lunar new year!

Origami notes :

  1. Golden retriever designed by Satoshi Kamiya.  Works of Satoshi Kamiya Vol 2.  Folded from 80 gsm paper; 25 cm square, finished size 14 cm.
  2. Bull terrier.  Adapted from design of fox terrier by Roman Diaz.  Origami for Interpreters.  Folded from embossed paper; 25 cm square, finished size 13 cm.
  3. Cocker spaniel designed by Satoshi Kamiya.  Origami Tanteidan Magazine no. 127.  Folded from 110 gsm art paper; 25 cm square, finished size 10 cm.
  4. Papillon designed by Hideo Komatsu.  Works of Hideo Komatsu.  Folded from art paper; 25 (?) cm square, finished size 9 cm.
  5. Simple puppy.  Diagram from internet.
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Pierrot and the Clown

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Pierrot and clown

Pierrot and the Clown

First, there was the clown.  This is a mask created by Hideo Komatsu.  It wasn’t difficult to fold, and the end result was nice.  Komatsu also designed a witch mask.  The witch certainly looked wicked.  From the clown mask, I thought of creating a mask of Pierrot, the popular commedia dell’arte character with a sad, expressive face and a trademark tear-drop.  The witch design came in handy, and with some changes the witch lost her long lashes and became Pierrot.  You can see them side-by-side in the picture above.

Origami notes:

  1.   Clown.   Design by Hideo Komatsu.  Folded from embossed paper/tissue paper sandwich, 25 x 25 cm.  Finished size 17 cm.  From Works of Hideo Komatsu.
  2.    Pierrot.   Designed by me based on modifications of Komatsu’s work.  Folded from embossed paper/tissue paper sandwich, 25 x 25 cm.  Finished size 15 cm.

Skeletons in my cupboard

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I have many skeletons in my cupboard, some more than 20 years old.  Origami dinosaur skeletons, to be precise.  Given the number of pieces that have to be folded for each, and the complexity, I can be forgiven for taking so long to complete them.

I started folding a triceratops skeleton a year ago, and this I completed recently.  Here’s the result:

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Triceratops skeleton designed by Issei Yoshino

Here’s another view:

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Triceratops skeleton designed by Issei Yoshino

This is an impressive design by Issei Yoshino.  It comprises 19 separate pieces that are then assembled together.  I must say the attention to detail is evident, and it resembles well an actual triceratops skeleton.  The diagrams can be found in Issei’s Super Complex Origami.

I folded another dinosaur skeleton a couple of years ago.   This is a T-rex skeleton by Marc Kirschenbaum.

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T-rex skeleton by Marc Kirschenbaum

What is remarkable about the design is that he managed to reproduce a likeness of a T-rex skeleton using only 3 pieces of paper!  Diagrams are from Tanteidan Convention magazine Vol 20.

Well, as I said I have other skeletons in my cupboard.  Will blog about them when they are completed.

Fun with cranes

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I recently folded cranes for an event.

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These are big ones, with a wingspan of 36 cm or 30 cm.  Because they need to be sturdy, I made them of Canford paper of 120 gsm weight.  This is how they looked on site.

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I had a good time folding models to give away.

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Before they were put up, my daughter wanted to take some photos of the cranes.  They turned out to be interesting “installation” pieces.

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Photos : Pek Wan Sze

 

 

 

Olympic games origami

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With the recent upsurge of interest in the Olympic Games in Singapore following Joseph

Schooling’s victory, I thought I should do something origami-wise.  So here are the 5 Olympic rings:

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The idea came from the origami Google doodle that was designed by Robert Lang to mark the 100th birth anniversary of Akira Yoshizawa, who is widely considered to be a pioneer of modern origami.  This was Lang’s origami Google doodle:

 

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Jo Nakashima had also put up a series of origami letters on Youtube.  Based on his approach, I folded the Olympic name too.  I adjusted the typography and simplified the letters somewhat, using variable length paper to do away with the need to tuck unwanted paper away.  This is what I came up with:

 

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Incidentally, as in Lang’s and Nakashima’s origami letters, each letter/ring has a thickness comprising a series of accordion folds which may not be so obvious from the photos.  So, till the next Olympic Games …..

 

Ushering in the Rooster

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The lunar New Year falls on 28 January this year.  It starts the reign of the Rooster, the 10th animal in the Chinese zodiac.  As I have been doing for many years, I will fold an origami of the zodiac animal for an e-card to celebrate the occasion.  Being partial towards complex origami, I am rather fond of the roosters created by Eric Joisel and Miyajima Noburu, the former known affectionately as Joisel’s prodigious coq among origami folders.  But I came across the model designed by Satoshi and decided to fold it instead.

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Rooster by Satoshi Kamiya

It is well proportioned, and has a nice comb, wattle and tail feathers.

I also folded another rooster, this one designed by Chinese artist Mi Wu.  I liked it for the clean finish and colour change.  So here’s it.

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Rooster by Mi Wu

Wishing all a happy year of the Rooster!

Origami notes:

  1. Rooster by Satoshi Kamiya from Origami Tanteidan Convention Book Vol 19.  Folded from 1 piece of embossed paper 20 inches square.  Finished length 6.5 inches.
  2. Rooster by Mi Wu from Chinese New Year Origami 2017 ebook.  Folded from 12 inch square embossed paper sandwiched with red origami paper.  Finished length 6 inches.

Farewell to the Monkey

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I was impressed by the Japanese macaque designed by Hideo Komatsu and decided to fold it.

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Japanese macaque

So is it a monkey?  According to Wikipedia, the Japanese macaque, also known as the snow monkey, is an old-world monkey that is native to Japan.  It got the name “snow monkey” because it lives in places that are covered with snow for a few months each year.  It has a characteristic pinkish face and derriere.

The lunar new year falls on 28 Jan this year, when the reign of the monkey in the Chinese zodiac will end and the year of the Rooster will begin.  So this is a timely farewell to the monkey, which I blogged about at the beginning of the lunar year.  I will post another article of rooster origami in the next couple of weeks, so stay tuned.

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Thanks to my daughter for the lovely photographs.

Origami note :

Japanese macaque is from Works of Hideo Komatsu.  It is folded from a piece of 10 in. square Elephanthide sandwiched with pink tissue.  Finished length is 4 in.

 

Wedding celebrations

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My daughter celebrated her wedding recently.  So I of course marked the occasion with, among other things, origami.

The first origami that came to mind was the Waltz by Neal Elias.  She wanted one in white and gold, so this is the end result:

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Waltz by Neal Elias

She also thought of spicing up her hand bouquets and boutonnieres with origami, and in the end we decided on a butterfly.  We chose a butterfly featured on Julia Aston’s blog.  The model was chosen for its elegance and simplicity.

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Butterfly by Julia Aston

You can see it on this boutonniere.

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Boutonniere with butterfly by Julia Aston

My secret project for the newly-weds was a board with their names emblazoned on it.  I had previously folded individual alphabets created by Natan Lopez, and also the “LOVE” sign folded from one piece of paper.

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LOVE by Natan Lopez

His is a 3-D design, and I thought it would be cool to use his alphabet to create the sign.  It proved to be an arduous task.  This is the eventual result:

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Individual letters designed by Natan Lopez

I also re-visited a model that my daughter liked a lot, which is a fish skeleton designed by Makoto Yamaguchi.  For some reason, she has always been fascinated by fish skeletons.  I re-modeled the look of the skeleton and this is the result:

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Fish skeleton designed by Makoto Yamaguchi

I’m happy to say that this is now prominently displayed in their new home.

It was a great wedding, and it is good that origami featured in it.

Beyond 8 to 5 – Origami

Some time ago, I was interviewed by Channel News Asia for a series of short clips they were producing on hobbies that people pursue.  Mine is of course origami.  They were interested in how I took up origami, where I get my inspiration from, and the process of folding and shaping origami models especially wet folding.  Models by various designers were featured, in particular the monkey by    (for year of the monkey) and Loggerhead turtle by Satoshi Kamiya.

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Loggerhead Turtle designed by Satoshi Kamiya

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Monkey designed by Nguyen Vo Hien Chuong

Without further ado, here’s the clip.  Enjoy.

 

Ushering in the Year of the Monkey

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Lunar New Year day falls on 8 Feb.  This day denotes the start of the new lunar year, which is the Year of the Monkey.  The monkey is the ninth animal in the Chinese zodiac (see my previous post)  People born under this sign are supposed to be smart, quick-witted and lively, like the monkey.

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Designed by : (l to r) Akira Yoshizawa, Saadya, Nguyen Vo Hien Chuong, Kunihiko Kasahara, Lionel Albertino

I continued with my practice of folding the animal for a Chinese New Year e-card.  As I searched for a model to fold, it struck me that many of them looked similar, as you can see from the picture above.  In fact, they looked like variations of the traditonal monkey, shown here:

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Traditional monkey

Of these, the exceptions were the ones designed by Nguyen and Yoshizawa.  Nguyen’s model became my favourite, though there is a fair amount of shaping required and I am usually not keen on moulded designs.  However, as you can see they are not complex designs, so I decided to use all the animals together in the picture.

The most famous monkey in Chinese mythology is of course the Monkey King in the Chinese classic Journey to the West.  I recalled the episode where the Monkey King was bested and captured by Buddha.  The story goes that Buddha told the Monkey King that he would not be able to get out of his palm.  So the Monkey King jumped onto Buddha’s palm and ran to the end of the world.  He saw five pillars and inscribed on one of them.  He then came back to meet the Buddha.  The Buddha showed him that he had in fact put the inscription on his upright finger.  Buddha then went on to capture the Monkey King.  I thought this image could represent this story:

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Miniature monkey

Happy Year of the Monkey!

Diagram sources:

  1.   Akira Yoshizawa,   Origami : Living Nature
  2.   Saadya, Sculptural Origami
  3.   Nguyen Vo Hien Chuong, 50 Hours of Origami + by Vietnam Origami Group
  4.   Kunihiko Kasahara, Origami Omnibus
  5.   Lionel Albertino, Safari Origami