Tips for designing mammals

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Tips for designing mammals

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » February 15th, 2018, 2:28 am

Hi everybody,

I've been trying to figure out how to design animals in general, but most specifically mammals. So far I've never been able to successfully design one, except for one rodent (and some humans). This is a bit of a problem for me since most people think of origami as animals, not aztec warriors.

I've found that because I only know how to boxpleat, I end up with some problems. One example is a panther I tried to design. If I have the grid be really detailed, like a 48*48 grid, then the body becomes extremely skinny. If I have the grid be simpler, like a 16*16 grid, then it's hard for me to get details in the teeth and claws. And if I make a skinny panther with a level shifter for the body, then the body ends up with some ugly edges and creases.

I was also looking at the cp for Robert J Lang's Irish elk: http://www.langorigami.com/crease-patte ... k-opus-537 Mr. Lang used a very detailed grid: 90x90 for the antlers, 23 at the widest, and 45x45 everywhere else. I've been trying to figure out his techniques for my own designs, but outside of the antlers, he doesn't have any obvious level shifters and I'm a bit confused.

So, for those of you brilliant designers who know how to balance the width and intricacy of 4 legged mammals, do you have any help for me? Is it easier to use the 22.5 degree method?
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby HankSimon » February 15th, 2018, 11:54 am

Go back a few decades and look at John Montroll's work, and his Dog base. This is VERY different from boxpleating, using a style of folding that is more like a Bird Base. But, if you've ever played with variations on the Crane and the Flapping Bird, that may help. If you haven't, then you'll have to do some research on Google, etc. to go back and locate these ideas...
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Bodo » February 15th, 2018, 4:16 pm

I would recommend 22.5 degree.
The main reason is that boxpleated animals look really boxy and have grid lines all over the body. 22.5 looks much more natural and is more fun to fold. :D
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » February 16th, 2018, 1:05 am

With the bird base variations, are there ways to get fine details on the animals, like teeth/claws?

And for the 22.5 degree method, does it require a lot of trigonometry to find the reference points? How do you make everything line up and meet at exactly the right angles, without using a grid?
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Baltorigamist » February 16th, 2018, 1:51 am

It's definitely possible, but it depends on your design skill. The most experienced designers can integrate pleats and 22.5 together, which allows for claws, etc. (Look at the Ancient Dragon crease pattern for a good example.)

As far as reference points, there's an article by Robert Lang which goes into great detail on how to find the exact locations of necessary creases: http://whitemyth.com/sites/default/file ... ctions.pdf
Most reference points can be found by a method called crossing diagonals; it only requires algebra and geometry to use. For example, take 2:(1+sqrt2).
That proportion can be found rather easily by crossing diagonals with slopes of 1/2 and -1/(1+sqrt2)--namely, connecting the corner with the midpoint of the opposite side and creasing the opposite bisector on the same edge.
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Brimstone » February 16th, 2018, 4:55 pm

Can it be said that the 22.5 "technique" is a design method? Like if you need 6 flaps (4 for legs, one for head and one for tail) can you find that base just dividing the 90 degree angles in 4? I don't think so.

I've always seen the 22.5 thing not even as a technique as I called it before for lack of a better word, but just as the result of using folds based only in dividing corners in half and then in half again.

Am I wrong?
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Baltorigamist » February 16th, 2018, 5:33 pm

Without resorting to semantics, I consider the term "design method" to refer to the relative position of the creases--not necessarily to the way a given model was designed. You can't design an insect by folding a grid, but BP is a design method.
(And, at least to me, "technique" and "method" are somewhat interchangeable. A technique is a way of doing something, as is a method.)
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Brimstone » February 17th, 2018, 3:30 am

I see your point, specially with your boxpleating analogy.

So OP learn to add grafts and work with a blintzed frog base. This is a technique that has produced many good models.
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » February 17th, 2018, 8:13 pm

Well, I know what a blinzted frog base is and I know how to add grafts, so that might be a good idea. Do you have any example models that have done that? Also, what is OP?
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Baltorigamist » February 17th, 2018, 8:42 pm

"OP" means "original post."

The best way to learn 22.5 design is simply to experiment. Learn the various molecules and how they fit together, as well as the general proportions of each one. There are plenty of 22.5deg CPs on the Internet--look at Kaede Nakamura's models, for example.
I'm not overly skilled at 22.5 yet, but I'll be willing to help you to the best of my ability.
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Brimstone » February 18th, 2018, 2:21 am

NeverCeaseToCrease wrote:... Do you have any example models that have done that?


I know Daniel Naranjo's http://www.flickr.com/photos/danielnaranjo used this technique in many of his early models.
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby NeverCeaseToCrease » February 18th, 2018, 4:05 am

Well, I know what a blinzted frog base is and I know how to add grafts, so that might be a good idea. Do you have any example models that have done that? Also, what is OP?
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby DavidW » February 18th, 2018, 6:56 am

Alot of Sirgo's models use blintzing bird or frog bases and grafts or point splitting.

For a graft with a waterbomb base look at King Ghidorah in Tanteidan Convention 5.
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby binky2819 » February 22nd, 2018, 12:47 am

I would recommend using 22.5 to make a base that "generates" all the main flaps (head, legs, tail) and then incorporating box pleating to add all the small details (digits, teeth, etc).
It is quite efficient to make all the main flaps with 22.5, because you don't end up with
1) a base that is monstrously thick, and
2) extremely skinny body or legs, which means you won't have to awkwardly pull out layers to add width.

Also, it is not absolutely necessary to use trigonometry to locate reference points for 22.5. You can have the references on a grid if you want.

Since you're saying you only know how to box pleat, I think it would be best to not go for something so complex yet. First try making something simple, say a dog, without focusing too much on detail. Try making several simple things using only 22.5 to understand how it works. They don't have to be designs of their own (nor do they have to be tetrapods), the point is to get familiar with 22.5, before trying something difficult.
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Re: Tips for designing mammals

Postby Baltorigamist » February 22nd, 2018, 1:59 am

22.5 doesn't lie on a grid, actually--otherwise I agree with what Binky said. That's not to say that you can't use, say, 1/4 or 1/3 as an initial reference point, just don't expect everything to lie on a grid.
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