7 Sep

A couple of weeks ago, my partner showed me how to fold an origami crane.

He has created a monster.

What started as a vague idea to make a dozen or so in various sizes and colours to hang from some naked branches to hide a large blank wall has turned into a wavering idea to make one thousand to create some kind of vague sculpture.

So I bought some beautiful paper and night by night I have sat and folded and my little bowl of origami cranes is slowly growing day by day. Soon I will be surrounded by them. Crushed by their tiny paper wings as they scream at me to do something with them. And as the pile creeps ever higher, the realisation of the vagueness of my sculpture idea hits me and I freeze up and fold more cranes.

At first, this was fun; I found it challenging to fold the perfect lines to create the perfect crane and then I find it meditative as I got into the rhythm and was lulled by the beautiful paper and elegant shapes: letting the background fade into nothing. But then I got bored.

I distracted myself by looking up origami websites and taught myself how to make other things, like flowers and animals. I made myself a menagerie of pets that fall over in a slight wind. But I still did not have any idea how to make this sculpture.

I thought about asking my origami pets what to do, but I thought that might make me seem a little crazy. So I asked my real live cat instead. He looked at me, meowed and proceeded to pat my cranes from their perch and bat them around the room. I didn’t think this was a good idea for a sculpture because eventually I would need to walk where he had put the cranes and essentially a sculpture should all be kind of in a corresponding space and not scattered willy nilly around the place and really I was hoping for one large piece not several small ones. So I thanked him for his time and told him to go and have a cat nap and went back to the internet for more distractions.

Origami, I discovered, is quite amazing. There are some seriously incredible pieces out there. I am not very advanced and have difficulty following the instructions and this usually ends in me screwing the paper into frustrated balls and hurling them at my poor, defenseless paper friends.

Here is an origami Jedi that I have never attempted:

Here is a dragon that I am terrified to think about making:

This picture that proves that other people geeks have way more time on their hands than me

Searching for a giraffe diagram as I had recently purchased animal print paper, I came across a website that had diagrams for dinosaurs. Cool! I’ve always had a bit of a thing for dinosaurs so I thought I’d give it a go and tried the easiest one. Mine looked like it had polio. So my partner, finally drawn in by dinosaurs instead of puppies, decided to give it a go. And made it perfectly. That is so irritating.

I tried the next one, which was slightly harder and I got stuck on a difficult fold halfway through, while naturally my partner’s turned out pretty perfectly once again.

I tried one more and it worked. Kind of. It could be better. But I left it at that and made the dinosaurs fight on the mantelpiece while a turtle and a prawn looked on. I guess I still haven’t really grown up.

And I still haven’t decided what to do with my cranes. Oh well, I guess I’ll just keep on folding.


2 Responses to “Paperweight”

  1. exford legs September 16, 2010 at 7:13 pm #

    Hi. I’m a mate of the fella who does ‘totally irrelevant title.’

    For yummy origami goodness with lashings of maths, embryology and zen, you can’t go past ‘Folding the universe’ by Peter Engel. It’s on Amazon.

    Even better: If you’re a Melburnian, I can highly recommend John Connor’s bookshop. His blog is

    Instructions for folding a giraffe included.

    • heavenlypeachbanquet October 5, 2010 at 9:08 pm #

      Hello Mr Legs and friend of Major Kerlin! Nice to meet you you and thank you for your recommendations! I found the website for “Folding the Universe” and it got me a little excited as I have to admit, my origami obsession had waned somewhat. Also, I just don’t know what to do with the finished products. I think I need some small neices and nephews to offload some stuff onto.
      I think I may have met John once with Mr Kerlin on a debaucherous night out at our local. I remember because I made the obvious comment in reference to Terminator and was embarrassed for myself. His blog looks great and inspiring. I own hundreds of books that I have never read and I just buy more and read those instead. Perhaps I will take a leaf from his book.

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