Saturday, December 20, 2008

Origami on Local Public Access Broadcasting

Carolyn hosts this, and invited me to do two programs. The first one, "Origami 3", I used up the entire airtime to demonstrate the folding pattern of Montroll's horse (I didn't dwell on teaching it slow, as I only had 25 minutes tops.

This is from a Long Beach public access program. Teaching the Robert Neale dollar bill flapping butterfly with John Andrisan's cosmetic modifications.

Unscripted and dry...funny toward the end...hey, it's public access! What more can you expect?

Thanks to both Johns for their permission to teach this on the airwaves.

Another video on Folding the Fins on Won Park's $ koi fish

Many folders still complain about steps 37-39 on Marcio Noguchi's diagrams of Won Park's koi. I've started folding some more as Christmas gifts and thought I'd film myself doing part of the fins.

Sorry if it's not great quality, but it was a challenge keeping the model in focus since I had the camera around my neck; I'm surprised nothing came out blurry. I forgot to turn the tv off in the background. So I replaced the natural sound with music. If that annoys you, just turn the volume off. I guarantee the sci-fi channel program in the background was so stupid, you'd thank me for replacing the sound.
Step photos can still be found here.
Also, I've been experimenting with applying methyl cellulose to the dollar koi model. I find it a bit challenging to keep the model from "expanding" when moistened too much with it, after it's already been shaped. I've had more enjoyable success at applying it when after the scales have been pleated, and the model is still flat. I then apply a dab here and there as I continue folding and shaping.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Luminary and one of the WCOG Founding Folders (well....not exactly, but member since 1986), Terry Hall, returns after a 6 year sabbatical.

The last time Terry folded with the group was at my first meeting. I arrived late, and he was folding a beautiful Montroll horse for a young girl. That inspired me. The only other time Terry came in the last 6 years was to drop off a couple of boxloads of folded models to be given away.

Catherine Ortiz took over leadership chores from Terry; but now, she stopped attending on a regular basis for about the last 2 or 3 years. No more newsletter, no one really in charge, although John Andrisan takes on some leadership tasks.

Friday, December 12, 2008

WCOG May 10, 2008

This is a video of raw footage from our WCOG May 10th meeting:

The opening scene is from an event that Yami and I did at Griffith Park for the mayor, for a couple of hours prior to heading over to the library.

Have you folded a book, lately?

I have David Brill's "Brilliant Origami", but never got around to folding the books, until I happened upon Mari Michaelis' instructional videos. It was her bookcase design, though, that got me out of my malaise, and I just started folding to her videos.



I think there's a bookcase design in Origami Omnibus, as well (I'm too lazy to go look it up at the moment- the real book sits on a real shelf, in a real bookcase, gathering dust). But this 3-piece bookcase worked just fine. Loved using the wood print paper, finally (as well as the brick printed wall and wood print floor).
Anyway, another charming model set.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Well, this about covers it all....

Found this video by Mari Michaelis:

"Life is Beautiful" created by Yoichi Yamauchi (Yami), is an arrangement of 427 individual models.
Top left: Health. Bottom left: Happiness. Top right: Have Dreams. Bottom right: Most beautiful.

More at Yami's Corner
(Don't forget to check out the two articles by Yami:
The Magic of Origami (Check out the original Nippon Keizai Shinbun article)
Folding Myself from Grief to Joy)

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

My New Fave Fold

Rocking horse, designed by origamist redpaper (seo won seon). Other models from his book, Creative Origami, here.

I ordered through Jassu, and it arrived from Korea in less than a week, even though I was told to give it two weeks.

Love it!

Thursday, December 04, 2008

The Fun of Paper Gliders

Apparently, my simple video entry is ineligible for the competition, since I live outside the UK/Ireland. (That's ok, though....I don't really feel a strong yearning to ride around in a helicopter- so there!). You can see more entries here.

This was brought to my attention when I saw Nick Robinson's post to the Origami Mailing List.

Here's my entry:

Very simple, "on the fly" quick-take video. Also uploaded onto YouTube.

Here are a couple of Nick Robinson's designs:

"Little Nicky"


Thursday, November 27, 2008

Natural History Museum's Art & Science Family Day: "Beautiful Birds"

This is our second time at the Museum; we were there, maybe two years ago. The theme was birds. I've never been much for origami birds, so didn't have much in the way of exhibit models, pre-made. I wanted to do more complex ones, but ran out of time.

I was pleased to see two friends from my gymnastics life come by for a visit.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Photos here.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hat tip: Douglas Philips on Origami-L (mailing List)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Yami gets away with "Grabbing the breast and pulling the tail"

This is Randlett's flapping bird.

I sometimes wince at Yami's humor when it borders on the edge of "inappropriate for children's ears".

There was one year that Yami apparently offended some wife of some program director at the JACC in downtown Los Angeles, during Children's Day. I only learned of it sometime later, when we stopped getting invited back, after two years of doing it. My contact didn't know the details, but I it's hard to imagine Yami offending anyone since he's so generous and kind; but I wonder if it had to do with humor like this?

I vaguely remember him phrasing something in a really funny way (I'm absolutely sure it was unintentional, and just came out funny) once, while teaching the Thai tulip. I don't remember the exact wording, but it had to do with the moment when you expand the model, like the waterbomb, by blowing air into it. To orient the students s to which way to hold the model, he said "this is the top and this is the bottom...." and pointed to his rear end.....then talked about blowing through the hole. I wish I could remember the way it came out, because it was hilarious. But I'm sure you can just imagine...

Have Furoshiki, will Travel

While closing up shop, there were still a few odds and ends on the table that Yami hadn't packed away yet. Yami showed us what to do with it.

"Furoshiki (風呂敷, furoshiki) are a type of traditional Japanese wrapping cloth that were frequently used to transport clothes, gifts, or other goods. Although possibly dating back as far as the Nara period, the name, meaning "bath spread", derives from the Edo period practice of using them to bundle clothes while at the sentō (public baths;public furo). Before becoming associated with public baths, furoshiki was known as hirazutsumi (平包), or flat folded bundle. Eventually, the furoshiki's usage extended to serve as a means for merchants to transport their wares or to protect and decorate a gift.

Modern furoshiki can be made of a variety of cloths, including silk, chirimen, cotton, rayon, and nylon. Furoshiki are often decorated with traditional designs or by shibori. There is no one set size for furoshiki, they can range from hand sized to larger than bed-sheets. The most common sizes are 45cm (17.7 inch) and 68-72cm (26.7-28.3 inch).

Although there are still furoshiki users in Japan, their numbers declined in the post-war period, in large part due to the proliferation of the plastic shopping bag. In recent years, it has seen a renewed interest as environmental protection became a concern. Furoshiki are, however, commonly used to wrap and transport lunch boxes (bento) and often double as a table mat for the lunch."

Yami also sent me this link diagramming how to do this.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Yami Folds Under Pressure

While showing my friend Thea how easy it is to piece together Kenneth Kawamura's butterfly ball using a "third hand" template, Yami goofs it up the 2nd time around- a rarity:

Joe Charms the Women with a Change of Heart

I can't tell you how often Joe charms the ladies with this model.

Steve Hecht has diagrams for anyone interested in folding one.

Joe Demonstrates the Flying "Catch" Fish

Unbelievable how Joe can take something so simple as to not raise my eyebrow, and turn it into a thing of magic that delights kids; adults find their hearts melt back to the wonders of childhood, as well.

This video shows you how to make the cuts for the tail (calls it a paper blimp).

Origami Redpaper

I love these models by Origami Redpaper (Seo Won Seon):

Blogsite here. He has a few teaching videos, including this flapping bat and a very cool peacock, where you can position the feathers to spread out or remain closed.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Chris Palmer's Hat Tent

I learned this around 6 years ago. I've had the opportunity to meet Chris Palmer a few times during my annual trips to OUSA. His work is amazing!

Chris Palmer's website

Here's one with a slower paper memory:

Just be warned: It's a 3 minute video, and by half-way through, it becomes like watching paint dry and grass grow.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Spinning Top in Under 4 Minutes

Sara Adams has a video on how to fold Manpei Arai's spinning top. I made the following video a while back for the purposes of showing how quickly you can fold this model. Why you ask? It's been a staple "giveaway" model of mine, so I produce them en masse, even folding several sheets together at one time to form the base. Sure, you sacrifice a bit on neatness, but not by much.

Annie Pidel's photo-steps can still be found here.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

All the World's a Spinner

I haven't attended a POP meeting in ages. The late Dorothy Engelman arranged the group (I believe I attended the first meeting), and Joel Stern has since taken over the helm. I first met Neil Eisman at POP, and later, Jared Needle.

Joe Hamamoto seems to see every modular as a model he can blow and make spin between his thumb and finger; and Yami seems to see everything as a challenge to turn into a spinner. He did that about two months ago with a model someone showed him, where he added a center unit to make it spinnable, and I joked that everything can be made to spin, and proceeded to turn my John Szinger turtle over onto its back and spin it on its shell.

I missed last week's WCOG meeting, but it sounds like Bennett brought a model shown to him by Mark Kennedy 20 years ago and Yami added one more unit to make it spin. Author of the original design is not known, but maybe Mark can shed some light on it.

I believe Bennett said he submitted diagrams to OUSA.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

No Bones About It

12/13/2005 - A folded eagle appeared on the TV series Bones in "The Man in the Fallout Shelter" (Christmas episode # 108). In the show, the forensic team is quarantined just before Christmas and prepare handmade gifts for each other from items in the lab. FBI agent Booth (David Boreanaz) makes an origami eagle for Dr. Goodman, the director of the Jeffersonian. The model was the eagle from "Origami Zoo" by Robert J. Lang, and was folded by Michael Ujin Sanders.
That would be yours truly!

I only just viewed the episode in question. I have no idea what the premise of the show is about.
If I remember correctly, I folded 2 Robert Lang Eagles from Origami Zoo, and about 2 more that were partially folded, in case they decided to film David Boreanaz "folding" the model (they settled on showing Boreanaz ripping a sheet of paper, fading out to the next scene)

The model only makes a brief appearance toward the end of the episode. I like where Dr. Goodman, who opens the present with the origami eagle, asks, "You made this?" And Boreanaz gives a modest "yeah."

You can view the episode in its entirety here.

Jackie Chan Adventures- "Origami"

Never saw this before, until recently; although I've seen it discussed on the O-List in the past:

A Jackie Chan Adventures episode #221 was called "Origami" an[d] aired 12/2001 on the WB Kid's Network.. A paper man steals an ancient Chinese painting from the Louvre, then changes into an eagle reminiscent of Lang's Eagle and takes flight. Jackie next appears at a famous art collectors house to offer to guard his collection. Viper is already there offering her service to Mr. Kasahara. The paper man appears and steals something of Mr. Kasahara's and Jackie again pursues the origami man. At one point, Jackie realizes that Kuniko Kasahara is the Origami thief. The climax starts with the origami man trying to steal a vase from the Louvre, but it is too heavy for the eagle to carry. There is a dramatic scene where Origami man has changed into a pterodactyl (Montroll-ish) and is chasing Jackie up the Eiffel Tower and his wing tips cut the steel cables supporting the stairs. The final scene shows Kasahara in jail folding little Jackie's and crushing them.

The character background states that Origami got his super powers because he found an enchanted square of paper with the power to transform. The paper REMADE him. Now us has some kind of "folding power" to transform into all kinds of shapes. Some pictures here

Episode Number: 27 Season Number: 2 First Aired: Monday November 5, 2001 Production Code: 221

Has anyone seen Origami Warriors before? I kinda looks like crap.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

John Szinger's Snapping Turtle

This blog has mostly been used to host my videos; but I think I might start expanding the original purpose and begin blogging on other origami-related things.

For the past few years, I sort of lost my passion for folding complex models; I think I mostly lack the patience for making the tissue foil/getting the right paper (I'm very picky!) and spending long hours on one model. Actually, I still love complex models; but ever since I started working with Yami and Joe, I've been influenced in the direction of exploring what I can do with the simple and with models that have entertainment/performance value to them.

Well, this past week, I decided to give John Szinger's snapping turtle a try. Shaping the shell and underbelly/legs was a bit challenging and I'm not sure how much has to do with technical precision-folding and how much is dependent upon each folder's unique, artistic instincts and sculpting sensibilities. I ended up moistening the paper for some shaping of the shell and legs.

Overall, I think it's a great-looking model, and a good compromise between an intermediate model and a super complex one.

Thanks John!

Monday, April 21, 2008

How Has the Internet Affected and Influenced the Origami Community?

I've been asked to write an article for OUSA's The Paper, regarding how the advent of the internet has affected the origami community. What I would like, is to use this post as a sort of "open interview", and allow my visitors and readers to share their experiences and thoughts on how the "information highway" has affected their origami experience, both the positives (such as easier sharing and communicating) and the negatives (such as copyright infringements).

Even within just the last 3 years, I've witnessed the YouTube explosion and growth of blogs and websites and online photo albums.

This comment by SlyNeko is an example of what I'm looking for:
I apologize for getting all touchy-feely here but i just had to point out that this is a great example of the uniqueness of the origami community.....Gadi creates and shares with us all a wonderful and innovative design and takes the time to document the CP....then Nathan lends a helping hand and takes it to the next level for those (like me) that can benefit from extra instruction...and all this in about a day's turnaround.....i think it's encouraging that amidst all the stealing and cheating that goes on, that there are good things that come out of the immediacy of origami on the net....anyway, i'm off to fold this great model....thanks to Gadi, Nathan, and all the great users here which make reading and learning from the posts so much fun...
As well as the thread on origami piracy; and the semi-off-topic discussion going on here. These are topics and issues that are relevant to my article. The existence of the Origami Forum, in itself, is responsible for influencing the lives of origamists around the world; in fostering and cultivating a sense of community and the cross-pollination of ideas and the sharing of our mutual love for the art of paperfolding. If not for the Origami List (Origami-L, O-List), I would not have ever "met" such wonderful people from halfway around the world, such as my longtime friend in Holland, Marrigje. If not for the internet, you would not be reading this blog; nor would I have been able to share my videos for about the last 4 years with the community at large. I think I was one of the first- if not the first- to take advantage of using blogs, as well as YouTube (my first account was suspended- but unfairly! It's a long story...).

Without the internet, I would never have stumbled across a photo of Stephen Delecat's dollar shirt with a tie, and decipher it before diagrams were made available. I would never be able to correspond with so many people, so quickly; to view with a click of the mouse, all the wonderful models they've been folding.

So, please share with me, your thoughts and experiences as how it relates to the evolution of origami, as it's been influenced by the internet. Just leave a comment. I'll try and credit where I can, should I cite you in the article. I suppose this article, in itself will come alive and be made possible by the magical wonders of the internet.

My deadline is May 21st.

Thanks for your time in advance!

*UPDATE* Wrote this to the O-List (I think I phrased some things more clearly and concisely):
I've only been on the internet for maybe the last 7 years. And in that time, I've seen an expansion of websites, the advent of blogs, the rise of YouTube and likeminded video-sharing sites, and an explosion of online photo albums as well as the sharing of ideas and information, thanks to e-mail and public message board forums. There have also been negative consequences, such as copyright infringements.

My question to List members, is:
1)"How has your life become enriched/impoverished/influenced by the technology of the internet, as it relates to origami?"

2)What changes have you witnessed within the origami community, since the internet?

3)Would origami be where it is today, if there wasn't an internet? What was the origami community like, pre-internet and e-mail service?

*UPDATE*04/28/08 Forgot to put this up:
The non-profit organization OrigamiUSA began in the 1970s and 1980s. Back then its primary mission was to communicate origami-related news to its members as well as offer them a way to buy origami books and paper. With the advent of the internet it has become much easier for origami enthusiasts to obtain such information, paper, and model instructions on their own.

Therefore, OrigamiUSA is very interested to know what origami enthusiasts would like from our organization, not only from our current members, but also from non-members.

Click here to go take the OUSA survey.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

This is Why You Don't Task Yami with Working the Camera

Aaargh! I figured all Yami had to do was aim and push the little button. I had about 4 clips of not much of anything that he shot. This was the best of the batch.

Lol...Yami loves my videos; so I just assumed, by now, he'd be a competent filmographer and would know what I am looking for.

Fortunately, I do have some footage of my segment of the on-stage demo at this weekend's Monterey Park Cherry Blossom Festival, as I asked a Festival volunteer if she could film me when I start talking about dollar moneyfolds.

Don't know yet how I should go about editing what I captured this weekend.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

WCOG Meeting April 12, 2008

As a bonus:

Not much in the way of origami; I just found this commercial song "catchy". From what I gathered, Melanie Horsnell (Forever Thursday) wrote it specifically for the commercial, and currently the 30 seconds of music is all there is.

By way of context, Erin and Thea are two gymnasts of mine; after the origami meeting, we stopped at Mitsuwa food court for a bite to eat; then perused the candy aisle in the grocery mart.

The origami at one of the eateries was folded by me (as Thea said, "I can tell Michael comes here.")

*UPDATE* 04/20/2008: Pictures added.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

koi in a Coke Bottle

I sold a few Won Park koi at last weekend's Cherry Blossom Festival. I didn't expect them to sell, but I sold out of what I had stocked (and had one stolen off the table, inside a coke container!). I felt they were expensive to buy (for a regular joe who thinks of paperfolding as "kid's craft" and nothing more), even though from a labor and artist perspective, I sold them on the cheap. Talking with Won after the Festival, I decided to follow his recommendations, which I have been reluctant to do for the sake of "purity"; and that is, to apply a bit of cement (from a gluestick) underneath the scales and the head. I am now sold on the results. I think there is more permanence on the model holding its shape over time and under humid and cold weather; which makes me feel better about people buying them from me. I dip the end of a twist tie (Won uses a toothpick, but I have none in the home) in the gluestick, then spackle it under the scales up top, and inside, underneath, as well as on the crimp in the head. It's well worth the efforts.

One of the biggest problems Won sees in how people are folding his koi, is in rounding out the model. Especially the head. The crimps help; but the fins should probably be folded back sharply, then the two edges bent and rounded together, as if one were going to close the bottom. Of course it won't close together (nor do you really want it to); but it will help round out the shape.

Really, I think the videos show this quite sufficiently well for all the complaints on them not being a tutorial.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Cherry Blossom Festival in Little Tokyo (Part II): Joe Hamamoto's Favorite Model

Joe is king when it comes to folding the David Brill doublestar flexicube. Here, he shows off one he folded out of a calendar.

Cherry Blossom Festival in Little Tokyo (Part I): The Paper Magic of Robert Neale

This video is of Robert Neale's (check this out!) $ fluttering butterfly, as performed by yours truly.

It's a rather long video, and I could definitely edit it down; but I just so enjoy people's reactions, it's hard to cut anything out; plus with so much going on in my regular schedule, I'm a bit impatient (editing is time-consuming). Some of the best reactions I failed to capture on camera (hard to film yourself while performing for an audience).

Monday, March 10, 2008

WCOG Meeting March 8, 2008

March was my first WCOG meeting, this year. I got off work at 2pm. The team works out until 3pm, but I smuggled my friend, Thea, anyway, and took her to the origami gathering. Her mom and younger brother met up with us, there. Not a huge turnout, and many were working on Won Park's koi out of what looked like Yami's kraft paper.

Thea's long been one of my favorite kids at the gym, and since I no longer work with team, I have not really been able to share time with her.

Don't know how well the music really fits, as is the case with all my music vids. I recently discovered cover songs on YouTube. I've always liked Bon Jovi's music, but haven't heard much of his recent stuff. Don't know how recent/distant this song is, but it's new to my ears. So I'm using it (the cover is by Bradly Akeman). Besides, I do cherish the memories of my time amongst friends.


Sunday, March 09, 2008

Won Park Folds His Koi- Shaping the head and body

A while ago, I put up a video of Won Park folding the fins, as people have been stumped by how to fold the fins, from Marcio's diagrams.

Recently, it seems that completing the head has also been a point of difficulty. So here is Won at OUSA 2007, folding the head, and doing the final shaping of his koi.

Part One:

Part Two:

Part Three:

I had to divide the video up into 3 parts, due to 100MB limitations with uploads. It is not an instructional video; but hopefully it will offer up clues to some of the difficulties folders are having, relying solely on the diagrams and verbal descriptions of what to do. it should also give a window into what a meticulous, tedious folder Won is. He is an artist, and exacts great care in what he is working on.

Even with the most perfect diagrams, stepfolds, video instructions, one might not be able to fold Won's model as beautifully as Won. Because what is not so easy to convey, is the artistic interpretation, which is uniquely Won. A folder could be technically precise, yet still not come out with a koi that looks like Won's. The final results will depend a lot upon how good one is at sculpting and shaping.

Actually, when I think about it, if one follows the proper fold sequences and folded neatly, then the shaping isn't all that difficult. Won relayed to me, that what a lot of folders seem to be missing (based upon photos submitted by different folders of their koi), is in rounding the head on the bottom. If one folds the fins back sharply, and rounds out the bottom, by curving the bottom layers inward, as well as the body, it should hold a pretty good shape.....unless you subject the dollar to humidity or cold weather (for gifts, where permanence is important and where the recipient might not know how to do "touch ups", over time, Won does apply a bit of glue on the pleats to make the model last and hold its shape "permanently).

On a side note, I arrived at yesterday's WCOG meeting after work, and after a 3 month absence. Yami had brought a young friend who needed help on the koi, and when I got there, there was a whole table of folders doing the koi out of a large sheet of, I think, kraft paper. I was entertaining a young friend I brought with me (one of my gymnasts), and it made it difficult to get into the mindset of offering help to my fellow folders on the WP model. I found it disorienting out of regular paper, and it made me realize how much I relied upon the printed landmarks on the dollar to help me fold the koi. Also, I haven't folded one in a couple of months. Arriving late, and with my young charge, I just couldn't get my brain into gear. So I hope maybe these videos offer up some help.

Again: these aren't instructional videos, so just be happy that it's better than having nothing. I do hope that watching Won and how he folds, does shed some light on how to do his koi.

I'm all of a sudden, in the mood, to start folding them again.