Monday, October 19, 2009

Won Park: Origami Master

This crab and toilet (another cool toilet!) he folded are made out of  single dollar bills! I can't do origami to save my life. It's too uhh....mathematical for me or something. The only thing I've done successfully is fold a dinner napkin into a Bird of Paradise, like they do in restaurants :-/. Here are more of his creations:


  1. Hey Kiva I love the money origami! It's amazing how paper can be so many things! Did you see my latest post? It's for you!

  2. Awesome, excellent! I love all his works. Thank you Kiva for sharing with us.

  3. Aren't they cool?? My mom forwarded the link to me and I thought I'd share it with you guys!

  4. Sara, my God!! Those are GREAT!! So you went from disastrous cheese filled stuff to perfect chocolate dipped bananas...all was NOT lost! That's so great that you incorporated some of your new materials and know-how into something you've never made before! Hell, I've never made those before! The chocolate coating is just perfect, really well done!

    Sara, most of the time, I use my Kemper needle tool to pick at my bread so it gets that porous look. It can be a little time consuming. You could use the super rough grade sandpaper, then attack it afterwards with a pick.

    I want you to get the quesadilla and grilled cheese sandwich done, though!! When you're ready to give it another shot, email me and I'll walk you through it, ok? But in the meantime, keep experimenting- look what you did with those bananas!!

  5. Thanks so much Kiva! My mom used to make chocolate frozen bananas for me when I was a little girl, and they are one my favorite things now! I think I'm going to make some more of them and experiment as well. Thanks for the encouragement. I love the fact that you're helping. I'm a bit star-struck and dazed that you are helping me and that you have seen my work! Thanks alot I will attempt that grilled cheese sandwich as well as quesadilla soon!

  6. Awww, Sara! But this is something I truly enjoy! It makes me happy to see budding miniature food makers learn and get better and better ;-). Often times, ok, most times, I am in a bit of a "mental cocoon". But I need to break out of the cocoon sometimes, for the sake of my own sanity ;-). I CAN get burned out with the continuous cranking out of stuff!

    I just remembered something: A long time ago, when I was using semolina to texture my bread (kneading it into the clay), I once made a mistake and bought POLENTA instead!! The grains were pretty large in comparison, but the result was pretty good...and with a bit of further "picking", it got even better. Because of the size of the grains, it made my bread look really porous. But now, I don't use that stuff in my miniatures because I've had nightmares of bugs attacking pieces I've made!! Can you imagine?? Roaches sitting at a miniature table with the dolls, eating the basket of bread!

    What you can do now is make a fat log of bread colored clay, bake it, grate it, then add it to your bread mixture. I have graters with different sized holes, so depending on the effect I'm after, that's what I use. Try using a grater with slightly bigger holes for bigger "pores". I'll snap a picture for you in a bit.

    Speaking of which, I also use this grated clay idea for thickening soups, sauces, and soups. I had been using colored craft sand and other random materials to thicken stuff, but when a customer asked me to make a bunch of different pasta sauces, I decided to try using the grated clay method instead. If you look at the ridiculous spider spaghetti thing I made for Halloween, that is what I used: grated clay for thickening.

    So, my basic sauce recipe was resin (I let it sit for a bit after mixing so it starts thickening and isn't so liquidy), powder pigments (a bit of red, a bit of orange, a tiny touch of brown to bring down the brightness a bit), then I blend in some grated reddish clay for the thickening effect. It helps to transfer small amounts of your colored resin mixture to a shallower container where you have already added some grated clay, then you can just fold it in.

    Sorry for running off at the mouth, but, as you can see, I REALLY get engrossed in this :-D! Just let me know how this works for you, ok?

  7. Thanks alot Kiva. So am I to understand that the graters will make chucks of different sizes depending on which you use that then can be used to make pores in bread? When you say "picking" do you mean you pick the chunks of the grated clay out of the bread? I'm a bit confused about how the grated clay will make pores. Sorry about that.

    I also wanted to know what kind of resin you buy? I bought Castin'Craft Clear Polyester Casting Resin at blick, but I haven't used it yet. Is that an okay kind for miniatures?

    What brand or where do you get your powder pigments? I looked at Micheal's and Blick and they don't have them!!! God!! Most of the items I need I have found aren't at stores around me! It's a struggle to even find the right Fimo colors at my craft store! What should I do!

  8. Hey Sara, let me explain :-):

    You CAN use Castin' Craft. In fact, I have a giant thing of it I bought when I was in S.F. The thing is, measurements confuse me (hell, anything mathematical does!),so I stick with Envirotex Lite, which looks like this:

    It's easy, because I just have to measure out equal parts from each bottle. Let's say I want to make some pasta sauce for two plates of pasta. All I do is measure 1/4 teaspoon from each bottle, then mix it, then add the dyes.

    Here are the powder pigments:

    - They are the resin powder pigments. Mind you, you can also use the liquid resin dyes made by Castin' Craft, which are usualy found right next to it in the same aisle. They have transparent yellow, transparent red, opaque brown, transparent amber, etc. They look like this:

    Does Dick Blick not carry Fimo Classic anymore?? Only the "soft"? You may just have to do what I do and order it online! I also have to buy Kato on ebay:

    But, because Kato doesn't have all the colors I need, I buy Fimo Classic online as well (Dick Blick online stocks more):

    Sara, what I mean with making the bread look porous is this (and you cracked me up with that question :-D):

    Let's say you have your bread mixture all blended (part white, part champagne, part translucent clay). You form a fat piece or simple "log" shape of that clay, then bake it until it hardens. When it comes out of the oven, take your grater and rub the "log" against it until you get a pile of shavings and bits. What you are going to do now is blend the pile of shavings and bits into your unbaked clay mixture to give it texture. Have you ever put craft sand or anything into your bread before baking it? Well, this is the same idea :-).

    I flatten my bread mixture a bit, then dip it into the grated clay so that it is evenly distributed, and I knead it all in, thoroughly. I keep doing this until the clay feels really grainy and course, all throughout.

    After this, I form my bread, brush it with chalk to brown it, then slice it BEFORE it is baked. You will see that because of the grated clay in there, it already has some texture. Now, you want to work on the exposed surfaces to texturize them even more. You can take some coarse grade sandpaper and press it on the exposed slices. Then, take your needle tool and "pick at it". Remember, you are doing this before it is baked. Do not just poke evenly round little holes over the whole thing- it'll look weird. Take your tool and kind of "drag" it short strokes, lightly, all around. It helps to practice on a piece of scrap clay. Google a close up photo of bread and really study the texture. You see how it's not just a ton of round holes all over the place?

    I will snap a series of pictures tomorrow, showing some of the steps, so it's not so confusing, Ok? It will all make sense then, hopefully ;-)!

  9. Oh, about the grater: see that little grater on the left of my picture? It has four sides to it, all with different sized holes. The bigger holes will give you bigger shavings, and the smaller holes with give you finer shavings. I use the medium-large sized holes.

    By the way, I also use one of my Japanese graters (the flat one in the foreground of the photo)for grating my chalks. It grates them pretty finely.

  10. Oh wow that was really helpful! I can't wait to try it! I'm going to Chinatown in SF to get some graters! I live in Berkeley which is just a 15 minute drive the SF. Thanks for all the help!

  11. You lucky bugger!! When I lived in S.F (for 6 years)I would go to Chinatown at least once or twice a week! This was mostly to stuff my face, but I loved poking into the shops and stuff too.

    Ok Sara, I got home kind of late today, so I'm making some bread right now. I didn't add anything to the clay for texture- I'm just picking the hell out of it right now. You don't have to add the grated clay (or anything) at all, really, to get the desired look. But as I mentioned, the graters will come in handy for alot of other things (like the sauces and stuff, and for chalk) ;-).

    Berkeley. That brings back lots of memories. I used to hit the record stores and clothing shops there quite a bit!