Considering that my intention is to write a book on the origami of chopstick wrapper paper, I’ve done very little on the original content that I optimistically assume will populate the book. Yes, I am very optimistic! Today, a glimer of creativity proved that that optimism might be justified; Inspiration struck and I created my second origami fold from a chopstick wrapper, this time for a tortoise. It’s a pretty complicated design — a hybrid base and box pleat — with good strength and a good location for the chopsticks. Probably a little too complicated to fold before the soup arrives, but at least I now have a candidate for an original advanced design. In two designs, I’ve probably bracketed the range of designs that will end up in the book. I’m feeling good.

In a fit of unbashed pride, I decided to photograph the thing to death. I grabbed some ornamental chopsticks, bento box, and ornate Japanese wrapping cloth that I’d purchased while on holiday in Japan several years ago and used them as props. I put my crufty, old Canon G2 camera — note to self to buy a better camera — into macro mode and used simple halogen lighting from a free-standing lamp along with the occassional flash to light the scene. I tried a number of arrangements. Getting the image I had in my head was quiet complicated as at the macro setting the chopsticks and the close up of the tortoise prove difficult to fit in the frame without losing focus. Meanwhile, as I’m eagerly photographing and proudly posing my origami tortoise, my seven-year old daughter happily snapped pix with her camera of “daddy” trying to photograph a “piece of paper.” In the end, I managed to get some shots and, for a completely unplanned session, I was pretty happy with them. I figure a good Photoshop session will fix up the lighting and framing flaws and I will have some decent sample images for my upcoming website (i.e. the one you are currently reading !!)

Only one problem: I need to figure out how to do the tortoise fold again. My inspiration didn’t included writing down how to fold the darn thing. So I’m left with a cool design and only a vague notion of how to repeat it.