Thursday, November 23, 2006

Breathing Life into Origami (the Japan Expo 2006, LA)

12/03/06 Here's a video from NewspeakTV:

For a larger screen, just click on the screen, and it'll open up a new browser, with a direct link.

It's not completely "child-friendly"; fortunately, for you visitors who are strictly origami-enthusiasts, I appear in the video during the first couple of minutes. It's pretty funny, throughout; but for all you kiddies below the age of 13, be responsible adults, and abstain from corrupting your young minds with inappropriate videos...until you turn 14. As for the rest of you: well...I'm pretty sure your minds are all quite corroded by now. So enjoy!

*End Update*

Joe abandoned Yami and I, to work in another booth on behalf of his church, I believe. And he was only at the Expo for a few hours on Saturday.
Yami had what he called a "senior moment", when at the end of the day, Saturday, as we were packed up and ready to leave, he discovered that his keys were missing. We did everything short of calling for his auto service to come open the trunk door of his car. We didn't figure to do that until we came back the next day. *Groan*. What a relief, though, that he still has his keys. His next assignment: make duplicates! All of his keys, including his apartment key were on that one ring. This video focuses mainly on people's reactions to the Robert Neale bunny bill and flapping butterfly. One of the things that I love to try and capture is the magical effect origami has on people. Their joy expresses itself in their spontaneous reactions. Some of the best reactions, as usual, have been when the camera wasn't ready. I tried to get Yami to film me when I had a large audience; and another friend to do so when I went out in the middle of my area and launched the cicada boomerang glider far and wide, and still had it return back to me. But I guess my camera's too difficult for others to work with. I guess it's getting old, because the button gets stuck; and only I know how to jiggle it just right. One thing you don't see, is that I don't have the dollar butterfly pre-made. I fold it for the guests, on the spot, telling them about how we were going to bring their dollar bill to life. After I fold the model, I have the audience guess as to what I've folded. 98% of the time, they guess that it is a butterfly. I have a way of giving them a subliminal hint, if they are having trouble guessing. Works every time. The reason why you see so many people in the video blowing on the dollar, is because when I hold it up, I tell them that they must blow on it, to breathe life into it. Both Robert Neale models were introduced to me 5 years ago, by Joel Bauer, who did a magnificent job of selling their virtues to me. In his masterful hands and presentation abilities, the magic is there.

Photos can be found here.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

There's "supercomplex", and then there's SUPERCOMPLEX EXTREME!

on exhibit at the Weisner Gallery, MIT (Cambridge, Massachusetts)

You guessed it. Folded from a single square. Unbelievable! Click the photo to be led to the source. If you're not familiar with Brian Chan's work, you need to visit his flickr album and website.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Cherin & Ward's Palehua Wedding

Yami, Joe, and myself were invited to help celebrate the marriage of Ward and Cherin Watanabe on October 29, 2006. This video encapsulates some of the fun we had with the guests. Photos can be seen here.

The song is by Amy Hanaiali'i Gilliom; called "Palehua". Cherin walked down the aisle to this contemporary Hawaiian song; and its echo lingered in my memory such that I asked her for the name of the song and artist. 2 days later after ordering it from Amazon, we have music for the footage I took of the origami aspect of her wedding.

Joe is simply amazing! I think he precreased 200 of his boxes for the guests.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Aquarium of the Pacific ~Autumn Festival~ November 4-5, 2006

I've been backed up on getting these videos out. Yami, Joe, and myself have been kept very busy. Besides time, I've been having difficulty figuring out music to go with each video. There really isn't much in the way of music for paperfolding. So some vids sit on the shelf, ready to be rolled out as soon as I figure out a theme. And most all of these need music; since I take 10-20 second clips, the natural audio just would come out incomplete and choppy.

I skipped ahead to the most recent festival we've done: The Aquarium of the Pacific, from the previous weekend. I believe it's my 4th or 5th time; with Yami and Joe, it's our third. If you want to see what we did in 2004 and 2005, just click away.

I took too much film footage. Since editing is so time-consuming, I took the easy way out and included most all of it....which makes for a very long video. YouTube only allows for a 10 minute maximum on videos; so I had to upload it to my account. The music choice is mostly because of the length of the video. Since I used Jaws music to bumper the previous two videos, and since it's an Aquarium setting we're dealing with here, I included it again, along with another John Williams classic score.

The one thing I'm excited about is David Brill's wedge flexicube. It is awesome! My first one, I had to apply some glue, as I used paper that was a bit thick, and it didn't hold together well. But the rest (and I've made several, because I like experimenting with color combinations and paper-type; plus, I know I'll be giving them away to friends) came out great! I purchased a copy for Joe Hamamoto as well. (He loves the David Brill double star flexicube). You can get a copy here, at the BOS website.

As usual, many of the most exciting moments are when the camera's not running. My cicada boomerang glider generates a lot of interest. It never fails. People always want to fold it after I toss it around. I know it's all fun and games until someone loses an eye; but I must say, it's highly entertaining to watch paperplanes whacking unsuspecting passersby....or seeing them duck for cover. Not when I throw it, but when other people throw their planes, and they don't quite have the hang of how to make it come back, yet.

As always, Joe was well-stocked on his free giveaways. One of these days, when I get a better camera that takes longer clips, I'll let you hear some of his humor. Yami's as well. They are extremely entertaining and highly popular with everyone.

My own favorite giveaways remain Arai's spinning top. I've learned to do Yami's method of stacking several sheets together, to expedite my time. I'll fold about 4 or 5 layers together and do the base; then separate the sheets for the last several steps to fold the top. The sacrifice on neatness is minimal, when I do this. Great model, and I can probably churn 'em out in 3 minutes, tops.

More photos here.