Friday, February 27, 2015


Won Park 2-dollar Enterprise, as taught by Fred Upton

This was taught to me and Ron Fujioka at Marti's last December.  Ron brought the dollars with the "1701" serial number.

Boldly Fold Where No Folder Has Gone Before

I dusted these off from storage.  They were folded maybe around 2003.  Creator is Andrew Pang.

The Klingon Battle Cruiser stand is designed by Terry Hall.  The one supporting the Enterprise is by John Andrisan.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Post-Matsuri Origami Workshop


 I double-booked myself last weekend and had to be in two different states at once.  It all worked out in the end.

Originally, I was booked for Matsuri in Arizona.  I was planning to take Thursday through Tuesday off.....this week.  The problem is Matsuri happened this past weekend; and Yami had talked me into working with a contact from Marukai who was looking for an origami teacher to conduct a workshop in Costa Mesa at Tokyo Central.  Yami did not feel his health would allow for himself to be booked in advance.

2-22-2015 Display

Since I didn't have to be at the actual Matsuri Festival (which would have been nice) and help with the origami booths, I was able to do my Costa Mesa event; then high-tail it 600-700 miles to Arizona.  Yes, I drove.  Through bad LA traffic and drizzling rain. 
I arrived at my hotel after midnight.  Stayed up until 3.  Then woke up at 6am.  Workshop was from 9am to 4pm.

It was great to see so many old friends and make the acquaintance of some new ones.  There's something special about these kind of gatherings because these are friends you generally see only once a year, if even that.

I had been invited to Matsuri before as guest artist one year; then co-artist with Yami a second year.

I was a "last month" replacement for Andrew Ting, who had school on the day of the workshop.

I shared a couple of performance pieces, including "Instant Origami":

 I brought a shoebox full of pre-scored polypopagon cards and those pretty well disappeared.  I think it was a pretty big hit.

Among the other things taught, Akiko Yamanashi's twist box:

I also brought the scored paper for Angel Blanco's self-closing box.  That also went over well.

More photos here.


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Origami Picture-Game

There's been a meme going around Facebook (I don't know who started it) where someone tags you to post a picture of a folded model, one per day for 3 consecutive days; and then to tag and invite someone else to participate.

I hate memes.  I ignored the ice bucket challenge.  I do not do email forwards to 10 friends, even if I risk bad luck.

When Andrew Hans tagged me, I didn't want to be rude but thought to ignore and pretend like I did not notice.  But a few days later, after talking to another friend, I decided to participate in good humor.  The following, from first to last, is what I posted:

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

WCOG's John Andrisan Passes

2-1-2015 From L to R:  John Andrisan, Jim Cowling, Ron Fujioka

Yami and I have been communicating back-and-forth about various things (Larry Davis, for one, will be in Southern California for a visit).  I had talked to Yami this morning; then in the afternoon, picked up another voicemail from him, saying something about "Jan Anderson" dying.  I had no idea what he was talking about or who Jan was.  Yami's thick accent muddled the name:  John Andrisan.  I figured out later, when I started getting wind of John's passing through various people and sources, as word began to spread throughout the day.

John's been a mainstay, the bedrock of the Westcoast Origami Guild; a pillar of the larger origami community in Southern California.  He's always been around, since I've been involved.  It's difficult to believe that February 1st at Marti's is the last time I will ever see him.

I'd like to share what Chila wrote to the O-List, regarding John:

Sunday, February 15, 2015

A lone Bruin deep in USC territory

I gave a presentation and workshop to some USC students today.  It was a good warm-up, dusting off some rust, as I have 3 origami events lined up these next few weeks.T

I met up with Yami last week and he passed off some die-stamped crease patterns for Angel Blanco's self-closing box and the polypopagon.  Both seemed to turn out well.   That's a relief.


Sunday Funnies


Thursday, February 12, 2015

Tuesday, February 10, 2015


Hat tip:  Joel Stern to O-List.  Joel writes:

Project Synopsis:In a small prefecture in Hokkaido, impoverished villagers with no weapons to defend themselves perfected an ancient art form called Warigami; the art of manipulating paper into weapons. Those threatened by this new power joined forces, and set out to destroy the Kamijin, or Paper Masters/Users, Folders, and Creasers. In order to preserve the art of the Warigami, the Paper Masters inscribed their knowledge and imbued powers into a “Master Scroll.” This scroll, containing all the knowledge of Warigami, was then split into seven pieces and divided amongst the masters who now became Scroll Guardians. As time passed, the duties of the guardians were passed down through generations.Season One is a revenge story, which follows Vincent, a descendant of one of the guardians. After witnessing a massacre at his dojo that resulted in his master’s death, the disappearance of Cassie, his lover, and the theft of his master’s scroll, Vincent must search for clues in order to find the person responsible for these crimes. All he knows for certain is that this person is also a Kamijin, and that other guardians are being killed for their scrolls. As Vincent’s only clue leads him to an assassin named Lexi, who tries to kill him, he must use his paper powers in order to survive.

Friday, February 06, 2015

The Most Interesting Origami in the World

Over a year ago, I got commercial work for a Dos Equis commercial.  Failing to obtain permission for an existing origami pegasus on behalf of the production, and at the request for one that flaps, I came up with a simple flapping pegasus in about 5 minutes.  They seemed to love it, although I didn't think it was much; and apparently in the end, they went with my feelings about it; and to the best of my knowledge, the footage they filmed was left on the cutting room floor.   Oh, well.  I was well-compensated for my time and efforts.

They were also interested in an origami rose and so I put them in touch with Phu Tran, who they commissioned to fold several roses for them. 

I was the on-set artist/expert during filming; and they butchered all 6 roses, snipping off the beautiful long stem and leaves. 

Anyway, Phu Tran's rose (just one version out of several designs he has) made it into a Mexican version (I'm unaware of an English one) of a Dos Equis commercial, and deservedly so:

Man tries to pay property taxes with folded dollars

Remember the story over 2 years ago about the dude who tried to pay his $137 traffic ticket in 137 origami dollar pigs?  Well, here's a new one about a guy who tried to pay his property taxes with 600 "intricately" folded dollar bills:
A Wichita Falls man made news last week when he was arrested while trying to pay his property taxes.

Only there’s a little bit more to the story than that. The 27-year old Texan, Timothy Andrew Norris, arrived in person at the Wichita County Courthouse to pay his $600 property tax with individual dollar bills – only there was a twist. Or, er, a fold. Norris had allegedly folded each bill so tightly that it “required tax office personnel approximately six minutes to unfold each bill.”

If you’re doing the math, that means that it would take 3,600 minutes – or 60 hours, longer than a work week – to unfold the bills.

Tax Assessor Collector Tommy Smyth said that the spectacle brought work in the office to a halt so he asked Norris to leave. Norris refused and was eventually arrested and charged with criminal trespass. As you can imagine, Norris was none too happy about being arrested and attempted to break away from the arresting officer, earning him an additional charge of resisting arrest.

Norris might have been agitated because he was cutting it a bit close. According to the “official online window on state government service from the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts,” most counties and/or municipalities usually mail their tax bills in October. The final deadline for payment is generally February 1, after which a payment is considered delinquent. Norris arrived at the courthouse before the delinquency date – on January 28 – to pay his taxes which means that he was still on time.

Monday, February 02, 2015

1st Sunday at Marti's

It's Super Bowl Sunday, so Jared brought the appropriate origami

Ron Fujioka brought his copy of Ken Hmoob's horse book and Jared Needle folded one

David Donahue taught his beautiful illusion box.

Alex suggested I use math to figure out the proportion for the lid in this hexagonal version of Angel Blanco's box.  But it only took me 3 trial-and-error attempts to play with it, to get the model I was after.

Secret heart box by Akiko Yamanashi

Marti's puzzle table, designed by David Wade:

More photos here.