Origami Viking Ship


Thursday, May 30 by

I've decided the take what I will call the "Jenna Marbles" approach to posting: as long as it's up sometime on Thursday, its still counts as my scheduled Thursday post ;) Or I hear it also goes by the procrastination method as well.

Well, back to the origami. Today is an example of all the wonderful traits that develop from folding origami. In my experience the benefits of origami are increased patience, devotion to a project for hours, sharpened sensitivity to the fragile paper and an increased outlet for creativity. All of these traits can be seen in the viking ship modeled today--or as I like to call it, the "dragon boat"! This model was diagrammed and designed by Robert Lang and can be found in his book, pictured above.

I first folded this design over a month ago on my usual experimental paper: an 8.5in square made from standard printer paper. By the end it had turned out quite small (which made it very cute), but still the folds were not near as precise as I wished them to be.

Just over a week ago it was my birthday, and as I was clearing out the wrapping paper and cards I decided to save a particularly large unwrinkled and barely creased piece of wrapping paper. I thought maybe down the road I would have a clever origami use for it. And also it was a shame to throw such a nice piece of paper away :)

 Then it occurred to me that the large rectangular size would be great for this model because of the irregular starting shape-- 1:4.6667. or 4 and 2/3 if you prefer the more accurate version (which I do). The only problem with such a large piece of paper was it was a little stiff and ripped easily on the crease lines, which is probably a general fault of nice, sturdy wrapping paper.

Anyhow, I persevered to create this masterpiece, which while still not perfect, was an improvement and a good experiment. Even the colors turned out well! And then I couldn't help taking a photo or two of the dragon boat family. The little one looks so cute in comparison. And it makes for a good story of perseverance in origami. If it doesn't go well the first time, take break and come back to it with fresh eyes, you'll be amazed at the difference a lil' breather can make!

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