|Minimalist origami is a form of
representational origami that seeks to capture the
essence of a subject in the smallest possible number of
folds ... or, at least, a very small number ... using
either just a single sheet or multiple sheets of paper.
Because of this the subject must be suggested rather than
modelled in detail and so the design will tend to
concentrate on those details of the subject which are
essential to recognition and ignore those that aren't.
The very best minimalist
designs are instantly recognisable. Persuading your
friends to recognise others may require a subtle hint.
'It's a stegosaurus,' usually works, for instance. In
general children seem to recognise many minimalist
designs on first sight much more easily than adults do.
There is no
absolute upper limit on the number of folds that can be
used in a single sheet minimalist design. A more
difficult subject may require more details, and hence
more folds. Achieving a good result using less than five
folds or less is usually reckoned to be pretty
creditable. Doing the same thing in just one fold is
Counting folds is
not, however, completely straightforward. Is a fold that
you make, unfold then refold just one fold? Do location
folds that aren't used in the final design need to be
counted? Is a curve a fold? Is a complex move that
creates several creases just one fold or several? My
answers to these questions are yes, no, yes and several,
but you may, of course, disagree.
There are (at
least) two different styles of single sheet minimalist
origami. I call them the 3D and flat styles. Minimalist
designs can also be made using multiple-sheet and modular
minimalist 3D design is the tent made by folding a square
of paper in half and arranging it like this:
designs may depend purely on outline shape or on being
folded from irogami (paper that is white one side and a
single plain colour the other) so that the contrast
between the two sides of the paper can be used to sketch
a simple picture.
this type of origami pictorial origami but it is also
sometimes known as 'drawing with paper'. Not all
pictorial origami designs are minimalist, of course.