Origami Forum Design Group

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Origami Forum Design Group

Postby Sadarac » January 11th, 2009, 5:46 am

Origami design is difficult to describe. Folding a piece of paper to look like something without any diagrams from a book or the internet is much simpler, but not always as rewarding. many who are new to this have a hard time.

This group would combine the skills of both advanced and novice designers so that something great could be made. This gives Advanced designers the chance to help novices and gives novices the chance to work with others and create something that they might not be able to create on their own.

Every step in the design process that can be a collaborative process, will be. First some subjects would be presented and then a vote would be held as to what subject would be worked on. Then the design process would begin, with members brainstorming, experimenting and collaborating until a design would start to take shape. once a design is finished it would be made into a CP and diagram combo. this way everyone who can follow diagrams could work on and be able to make the finished design.

Anyone who wises to help me with this is welcome to do so. I will try to answer any questions that you might have. I did talk to Anna about this and we decided that it might be hard to do ,but if it worked it could be amazing. I hope that YOU The reader will help me to do something awesome.
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"When you put a crease in a piece of paper, You're essentially changeing the memory of that piece." - Erik Demaine (from "Between the Folds")
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Postby Jonnycakes » January 11th, 2009, 6:23 am

This sounds interesting, and as you decided, very difficult. Especially depending on how many people participate, compromising on a single approach would be difficult-this could be lessened by splitting the group into smaller parts, though. That way, people could be grouped well according to their strengths and weaknesses. The barrier of having to communicate digitally rather than in person could also complicate things.

Difficulties aside, the potential of this group is to come up with designs that could not have been possible or feasible otherwise and to come up with them faster. I would be glad to participate.
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Postby OrigamiGianluca » January 11th, 2009, 2:40 pm

I may not understand the wortking process, but it seams to me that except from the starting decision-making steps, all the hardest work (developing and diagramming clearly) would be done by few "advanced folders" as you defined them, charging them with a very big and heavy job.

Have you ever wondered about why there are lots of origami models but lacks of good diagrams?
For many of us (with really few exceptions) origami is a spare time occupation. Making diagrams steals a very big amount of that time, it is a boring job and it is true that is difficult (if you wish to make them understandable for other people but yourself).

but I repeat, maybe I've undestood wrong.
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Postby Sunburst » January 11th, 2009, 4:27 pm

Hmmm, this does seem interesting. I'd like to participate as well since I believe that I could be useful here. However, I don't think I can help with diagramming. I completely agree with what OrigamiGiancula said in this matter : not many people have the time, or skills, to draw good diagrams. So, unless the resulting model is incredibly simple, the very least I could see would be photo diagrams or just a crease pattern.
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Postby HankSimon » January 11th, 2009, 6:51 pm

As I cheer from the sidelines, let me offer a few observations.

1. The good designers: Yoshizawa, Lang, Trollip, Dinh et al. appear to start out with an idea, design a model, then continually refine it, when they were starting out. They may exhaust a subject with many improving models, or a technique, or a set of details, or even just increase an intangible better representation.

2. A 30-step model can be as "good" as a 200-step model.

3. The abilities to design, diagram, and fold are independent. This topic seems to focus on design, irrespective of instructions.

4. I repeat my question from a different post, that I believe that there is a small group of folks who may not be able to design, but really like to diagram and do it well. If you know someone like that, it would be useful to have them record some of the design ideas, allowing the designers to be free to be creative with their strengths.

5. Potential models that lend themselves to increasing quality:
Statue of Liberty, Sphinx, Train, Ship, Dog.

I don't believe that there is a model of a dog that has the quality of Quentin's horse or Seth Friedman's Blue Bar Pigeon.

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Postby Jonnycakes » January 11th, 2009, 8:56 pm

Do wolves and foxes count for dog? And maybe the focus should be on learning to design and/or improving our design skills rather than collaborating to create a design, especially if we will not be meeting in person. Using an instant messaging program would be a great help for this.
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Postby mike352 » January 12th, 2009, 7:51 am

A scenic origami model might lend itself well to this, especially since different people are at different levels. Say we want to design a nature scene, with a tree, a bird, and a dog, all from one sheet. We want to incorporate all of them in one sheet with various grafts, so each part can be designed semi-independently. The only conditions would be something like, the dog needs to have an independent flap coming off at 22.5 degrees, or something along those lines.

I've just created a park scene, with a boy reading a book on a park bench, with a tree behind him, from one sheet. I need to fold it from nice paper before posting, but the model got me thinking quite a lot in the last few days about such things. So often the goal is efficiency of paper, but with extraneous flaps and lots of paper for ground or connecting objects, nice scenes can be made.

What do you all think?
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Postby ahudson » January 12th, 2009, 11:49 pm

This sounds an awful lot like our monthly challenges, with some modifications of course.

I can't speak for other designers, but my design process can't really be broken down that easily. Generally I have three "phases" that I go through when designing a model:

1) Inspiration. I get an idea, either from free-fold sketches or from something I've read or seen. This can be anything from a structure I like to a part of a model (like a head or a foot) to a complete model. Collaboration on this step of the process would be quite impossible, as I'm not entirely sure how I get these ideas anyway, beyond random chance.

2) Completing the model. Although on rare occasion I'll have an idea of what the finished model will look like, most of the time I just sit down and go for it, and work out the details of the model in one sitting. Sometimes I'll get what I want on the first try, and sometimes I'll have to go through several sketches before I find a finished product. This process would also be very hard to collaborate on, although it might be possible; generally I just sit down with a sheet of paper and start folding, it's trial-and-error for the most part, not any sort of rational process.

3) Refining the model. After I finish the first draft of the model, I'll keep it around on my desk for awhile, and often notice some things I want to change: a different pose, or the wrong proportions, or whatever. Fixing these is something that could be shared relatively easily; but this already happens on the forum or on Flickr. When I post a photo I'll often get a comment or suggestion about how to improve the model in some way, and that often leads to another cycle of revisions.

I think this is a good idea, but I have a hunch that you'll have a hard time finding designers with the time and patience to help out-- there aren't very many of us, and there are a lot more people that want to work on their designing ability...

All that being said, I'd be happy to help out if I can.
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Postby HankSimon » January 13th, 2009, 2:34 am

Two more suggestions:

1. The novices might work together to decide on a few models or variations that can be completed in a couple of weeks without too much frustration. This activity is more to get folks to work together, because some people will start to re-direct their time as the year progresses. You can ask the experts for the feasibility of your model, and some tiny amounts of guidance, after much gnashing of teeth. Then, you can increase the challenge.

2. The experts can work to advance their design skills, maybe in this topic so that the rest of us can eavesdrop and look over your shoulder. Ignore or comment on our kibbitzing by your own choice.

Sadarac: because you started the novice group, I suggest that you take the lead to suggest some models, putting them up for opinion until one or two reach a consensus of feasibility for beginners. You may be on your own, but you may be the only one that learns to design with the varsity team...

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Postby Sadarac » January 14th, 2009, 6:08 am

All of the points presented here are valid. Splitting in to two design groups hurts the idea of having novices working with advanced members. the fact that we have to electronically communicate is a barrier that is difficult to get around. Photo diagrams that were paired with simple word instructions would be fine. To clareify what we would do. it would be a Model that is Simple, however it would be more complex then a model that a novice would make on there own.

I know you guys worry about a unbalence of work divisions between the advanced and novices but the way that this should turn out is to keep the work as close to even as possible.

The models total difficulty would be something that a small child would not fold easily (unless they were well practiced in origami) but that a 14 year old that has done origami for a few months could fold with minor diffiulty. It would be a step or two up from simple and traditional models.

Ideas:
stuff that allready common bases lend themselves to. IE Birds, Fish, Frogs and other simple animals.

Buildings ie. eiffle tower, arc de triumph, leaning tower of piza, The Pyramids( how cool would it be to make three from a single sheet)

Common objects Ie, Computers, Cell phones and other things you see a lot of in daily life.

a very interesting challenge to perhaps work on after doing a few other models would be a Color-change Clown fish :)

These are just some ideas.

Its good to see intrest in this :lol:
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"When you put a crease in a piece of paper, You're essentially changeing the memory of that piece." - Erik Demaine (from "Between the Folds")
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Postby origami_8 » January 14th, 2009, 7:43 pm

The problem I have with this is that I can't split the design process apart. For me the idea what to fold and how to do it are nearly the same. I have a picture in my head and fold it, or I doodle up something. I'm unsure how I could incorporate another person in this design process. The only thing I feel is possible is to explain how to fold different parts, maybe to explain how to find the right base when you know the features that your model should have. But it's all about trial and error. If you just want to mathematically design a model, you can read "Origami Design Secrets", download Treemaker and draw Stick figures. If you want to design a model yourself you need to know what you want to fold and an idea how to do it and when you know how to do it, you don't need anyone else.
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Postby ahudson » January 14th, 2009, 8:55 pm

I think maybe a better way to think about this would be, the advanced designer is guiding the newbie through one of their first designs, giving advice and teaching along the way.
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Postby tikitiki » January 15th, 2009, 2:09 am

This sounds like an awesome idea. I like to try and design models, but sadly most fail. I would definitely be a part of the novice group; however I would love to participate.
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Postby OrigamiGianluca » January 18th, 2009, 3:29 pm

Unfortunately I've understood right :(

I continue seeing a lot pre-starting problems without solution.
- electronical comunication is difficult, takes long time since all the people involved never be connected at the same time, and often slow internet connection are part of this problem
- photo-diagrams are as quick to do as they are almost unintelligible, they don't show clearly what it needs to do (and often the notes aside gets you more confused). Well done diagrams remain the best way to share origami. But they take long long time.
- difficult model does not always mean good or beaytifull model, so don't look anyway for a difficult one.

and, please try to take my following words in the right way, but I think that a person, no metter his age, that gets in touch with origami should go on with easy and traditional models/bases for a bit longer than "a few months".

Wise man said "you have to learn to stand up, then to walk, then to run and then to flight".
That's why quantum leap theory is not taught at primary school, I suppose... :wink:
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Postby HankSimon » January 18th, 2009, 7:47 pm

What I just read is the possibility of two experts providing a little guidance when the novices get stuck, and possibly one expert who may provide critique of diagrams.

Therefore, I suggest that the novices propose 3-4 subjects that might be simple to intermediate, then the experts could provide a little gentle guidance towards feasibility, and the novices go back and vote on what they want to work on, in order from most interest to least.

Then, Sadarac, since he started the group, might select one of the top two favorites, and propose either a full rough design, or initial ideas.... to get things rolling.

???

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