In a salute to the Armenian heritage of a clever and lovely woman, to whom my dear son, Peter, is engaged to be married, this Kirigami glows with the colors of the Flag of Armenia.
Another one, made previously, now looks subdued by comparison:
Acknowledgements The form is one of Guy Petzal’s simpler Ullagamis. A single piece of paper was cut and folded to make each model (plus the mount). The dots embody a mathematical pattern known as a golden ratio Fibonacci sequence, also seen in nature in sunflowers or pine cones.
Emma visited the “Defibrillator Performance Arts Gallery” in Chicago with Joshua, where he took this photo of her.
It’s almost like a charmed stage set, with lovely highlights and shadows, the bow arch and the shadow profile of her, even the little puff of vapor. And so, I’ve rendered it as a Kirigami!
The flowing waters behind the pop-up form may evoke her feelings for the ongoing performance. Might this piece also try to infer his feelings (the photographer’s) for her?
This is my first use of skewed forms in a one-piece, right-angle pop-up (a Kirigami). Without the photo on the front, it looks like this.
The concept is shown by a simple design diagram, as the form is visualized when opened out flat. It would be so before doing the physical preparation for folding (that is, before cutting and scoring).
This old guy is a large Amazon Green parrot named Trouper. And vocally militant he can sometimes be. I had some fun scrambling his portrait to caricature my impression of his ‘dark side’. He looks so much sweeter in the original photo shown here [in my blog].
His claws and beak have drawn blood. “Beware the Jabberwock, my son! The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!” – Lewis Carrol
With my apologies to his indentured caregiver, N.L.P.
A quickly paced technical tutorial on the method that I used in Photoshop is at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wMXt4KDXk7k.
A second sister to my recent prior floating cube piece. The whole relief is an intact, single piece of paper. A second flat graphic, attached behind the relief one, fills in the gap from which the relief sprang forth. It is not a pop-up.
A wider view is here.
Copyright William James 2017, general reproduction rights reserved, but images may be pinned or linked out elsewhere if this post is credited as the source.
Three paper shells comprise this crystalline 3-D model: the folded surface shell, folded middle shell and a flat back shell. It has two, nested interior volumes. One is behind the front shell, and the other, behind the middle shell.
In the digitally designed model, these shells were a sequence of three planes. Those planes were linked into one continuous, accordion-folded zig-zag. I suppose the product of this interesting method could still be classified among all other Kirigamis, although some might surmise I’m bending the definition to fit. In the digital model, as visualized with the origami plugin, it is one inflected but unbroken object. I had to print, cut and fold three separate paper prints to make it, in practice. It would have been too cumbersome to handle with two hands, otherwise.
My recent post showed the same Kirigami form in a single shelled design. I imagined there still could be a way to impart more depth and volume than that one had. The outer ‘butterfly wing web’ was a fun design project while learning how to make a color gradient mosaic in Adobe Illustrator.
Strathmore 451-1 paper, watercolor textured, 8″ x 9″ unfolded; Epson P-600 pigment ink printer. Copyright 2017, rights reserved by William James. It’s OK to pin or link images to a noncommercial blog, and please credit this post as the source.
As always in Kirigami, only one sheet of worked paper makes the 3D object, and it is still intact. The folding of all the forms out and forward from the prime axis leaves a hole where that material was lifted away from the middle of the paper. The piece shown here is attached to an identical sheet behind it. This is done to fill the hole as though the sheet were both cut and uncut, and it enhances the 3D effect as follows.
Turning the piece, one finds many unique angles at which the eye projects from a color streak on the 3D figure, back to its place of overlap on the two background planes. Follow the colored stripes outward as the colors merge in certain frames.
The cubes are sitting in a sunny space where they may be grazed by color streaks. Or, maybe the colors have just streaked out of them because they were opened?
This Kirigami is bit of a mechanical puzzle: how can this airy thing be folded up from one piece of paper? I had found this interesting model on Pinterest:
As a novice paper folder, I wanted to diagram the underlying architecture of this piece. Once I had grasped its plan, just to make sure that I had really understood it, I added a fourth floater:
Notice the lines behind it? That’s the blueprint for cutting and folding it. It’s clearly shown here:
The pop-up action mechanism is revealed by comparing this diagram to this partially folded state:
This material is Frosted Gold, Canford Card; I think it would also look cool in sheet brass. The diagram is available from me upon request.
My learning curve has been greatly eased since I’ve started using an extension called Origami in Adobe Illustrator. It simulates folding of the working model (here, the ‘top’ is to the right):
It can zoom, tilt and rotate the working model. Mistaken lines in one’s structural diagram are all specifically located, so it is a great tool for self-directed study.
The 2D pattern for this 3D volume developed as I played with the idea of a pyramid of interlocking planes.
It was my partner Betsy’s creative quilting practice that inspired me to put a batik-like graphic on a Kirigami popup. I picked the tonally coordinated color pallet for my pyramid, and then a vibrantly colored random network which seemed the best as my base image (credit: Adobe stock image bank, “Wired”).
Printed 20 cm x 20 cm flat.
Like a quilt, it will only ever be one sheet of paper (except for the backing sheet), even after folding as a 3D sculpture:
Folding a 3D form is a gradual process that takes a couple of hours. (In the diagram above: Black = cut; red = fold forward, blue = fold backward.) Tensions arise, both physically and emotionally, while trying to coordinate the gradual folding of more than 100 right angles. All of those angles most be partially folded in small changes through many cycles. Like all Kirigami forms, one might either open it back out again to retrieve a single flat layer, or continue to collapse it inward almost to flatness, except for the thickness of four layers of folded paper.
A strong but disorderly web of vivid red links and nodes binds the pyramid to the seven edges of its two framing planes (one edge is shared). It appears as though the pyramid is nested into two sides of a partial outer box or prism. As both the pyramid and its ‘container’ are classical rectilinear forms, I was excited to find that the linking lines which connect those appear messy, improvised, exploratory, non-classical.
Text and images copyright William James, 2016; reproduction is allowed.
Happy holidays! Here’s a Kirigami of mock gift boxes, like a store window display. I’m avidly learning the basic methods for designing cut-and -fold pop-ups, these days. This is my first original Kirigami form.
In two dimensions, unadorned, it looks like this:
And like this with the graphics added:
… and when folded, like this in time and space:
All images copyright William James, 2016.
Earthly contours seem to bake to warm and crusty orange in the sunlight. But when in shadow, this same topography appears fluid, more like a body of wind-rippled water at night. Eerily greenish auroras billow across boundaries. I like to imagine this as a conflation of a pagan icon from a Renaissance map with a data driven, aerial radar survey.
The vivid patinas of orange and green appeared spontaneously, without any treatment after etching. However, the etching fluid was already much used. I may never see this particular color effect again!
The dark blue resist film still there on this surface could be dissolved away to expose pure, shiny copper (see below). Other artists have advised me to leave this piece just as it is, to preserve the excitement of its strong contrasts.
When I had used exactly the same graphic image before, for the first time (below), copper surfaces that were actively etched by the chemicals took on a blackish cast, different to the orange and green. Because I had stripped off the blue resist film after etching, the lately-exposed bare copper slowly oxidized to a fetchingly iridescent sheen. The blob of blue in the center was a naive experiment with a patinating chemical.
This may display as a GIF animation. If not, here are the other angles:
Lines purposely etched into the copper allowed me to neatly fold the sheet with some slight angles and curves. Because of folding, the visual drama of this darker piece is truly revealed only under dynamic lighting. (It’s supposed to display here as a GIF animation.)
Both pieces are 12.4 x 19.4 cm.
All images copyright William James, 2016.