Origami Heaven

A paperfolding paradise

The website of writer and paperfolding designer David Mitchell


Modular Method and Method Analogues
Modular method is the way in which the surface of the form is made up of, or broken down into, individual modules. The same modular form can often be constructed using many different modular methods.

Here, for instance, are just a few of the ways that it is possible to construct an 8-point Stubby Star, one of the classic forms of modular origami.

  The Epsilon Star

This design, also known as Kenneth Kawamura's Harlequin Star or Robert Neale's Blue Balloon, is a compact weave design made from six preliminary folds.

From Sonobe Modules

This picture shows what the 8-point Stubby Star looks like when made from twelve standard Sonobe modules.

  From corner-pocket Sonobes

And this shows one what it looks like when made from corner-pocket Sonobes instead.

Star of Wonder

This design is my Star of Wonder, which looks identical to the corner-pocket Sonobe version but is actually made from twelve delta modules using an entirely different modular method.

  Spiral Cluster 48

This design is made using 48 identical modules. Four first go together to form a compound corner-pocket module and then the twelve compound modules are combined to create the form.

The Contrast Epsilon Star

Finally this is my Contrast Epsilon Star which use the same modular method as the Epsilon Star but has a very different appearance because of the colour change introduced when folding the modules.

Conversely it possible to construct many different modular forms using the same modular method but reconfiguring the modules to vary the appearance of the form. Such designs can be said to be method analogues of each other. Here are some well known hexoidal (6-part) designs that are all method analogues of each other but are held together by means of several different assembly systems.
  Kenneth Kawamura's Blintz Cube

A wraparound weave design from six blintzed squares.

Robert Neale's Octahedron

The classic self-tab-and-pocket design from six waterbomb bases.

  The Epsilon Star

A compact weave design made from six preliminary folds.

Ed Sullivan's XYZ

This design can be achieved by sinking each of the vertices of Robert Neale's Octahedron to the halfway point. It is probably best characterised as a wraparound weave design.

  Philip Shen's Omega Star

This design was developed from XYZ by folding all the outside edges inwards.

The 6-part Enigma Cube

Finally this complex shape can be derived from XYZ by first bringing the internal corners outwards and then by pulling the central external corners apart.