What is kirigami?
Firstly, at the very beginning, let us show you some basic concepts of kirigami.
The term of “Kirigami” originally used in paper-cutting art of Japan (of which the main producing process is folding paper into sections, then trimming to create symmetrical cut paper pattern over 1 center). On 10/12/2010, the fanpage and club of 3D pop up card and paper cutting in VN was established on FB, using the term in refer to all type of paper cutting (perhaps because it is compact, rhyme and easy to read: D). Therefore, term of kirigami is commonly used at present, does not refer to paper cut art comes from Japan only. Because in fact, very few players in Vietnam followed trdiational Japanese style of kirigami (even Kirie – Japanese paper cutting painting, seems not very popular.)
In general, paper cutting art is basically divided into:
-Bearly paper cutting: or ZERO degree kirigami. There are several sub categories in this type as silhouette, stencil, china paper cutting… This type is considered cornerstone for the latter development into other types.
-Pop-up cards: 3D cards that can be folded into flat surface. There are several methods to creat 3D cards that can be opend in range from 0 to 360 degree. The content in such cards is ussuallly very abundant, basically devided into smaller groups:
+ Outline cutting: It is popular with cards designed by using triangle method combining slice form or multi layer. Glue is usually used to connect parts of card.
+ Pop up kiri (all motifs are created by cutting, color printing is limited or nod used). It’s common with slice form and multi layer, triangle style is relatively rare. Glue is not used. Latches or interlock links are usually used in such types.
+OA (origami architechture) is presenting architecture on paper, often used sliceform (180 degree) or multilayer (90 degree). It is considered a typical group in pop up kiri.
So how to conclude? Is kirigami easy or not?
It’s hard to find out a general anwer for this question. There are many players said it’s easy, but no less than than say it’s too difficult, it depends on your own. Thus, this post is mainly to discuss the level of kirigami players, hope that it can be a reference to help you evaluafe your skill yourself. This ranking is for all categories that I presented before, because writer couldn’t have sound knowledge in all of them.
Level 1: Players that can cut based on available patterns.
In kirigami, the card are usually cut out and finished by the author, then there will be 1 cutting template (pattern) provided to people based on that; they then cut the lines on the paper to complete (0 degrees), or then fold to complete based on a sample of finished products (pop-up). It’s pretty easy for you to reach this level, because anyone can cut the lines on paper. Workmanship is classified based on the cutting speed and sharpness of line cutting, ability to folding 90 degree cards, OA, or attach precisely 180 degree pieces sliceform. Proficiency in this level, you have a clear understanding kirigami then. And it also decided your passion to kirigami, you’ll probably give up because it’s too boring, easily, because all you need is simply downloading pattern, printing on paper, then cutting and finishing, (nothing can be easier, right?). But there are also players who learn deeper in this subject, and move on to Level 2.
Level 2 refers to people who can redraw other’s work.
First of all, write would confirm that, redrawing a pattern is not a challenge, it does not require a professional drawing skill, or skillfulness. The only requirement is that the understanding of basic principle of kirigami, to explore the method used by the author, then finish the pattern is too simple. And to understand the principles, avoiding errors in the rendering process, they should have experience in cuttingand proficiency in cutting ability. Once player have mastered this level, usually forwarded to the next level, few people stop at this level without progress further.
Level 3 includes those modifying pattern of others into their style.
Based on available ideas and methods from their predecessors, players can change according to their own ideas. It requires greater creativity than just redrawing of others. With this level, players partly reflect their own self through work, and can also help distinguish themselves between many other kirigami fans.
Level 4: Realize your own ideas.
After redrawing the pattern of other authors, having ability to modify according to their own pattern, then gradually, players can also express their own ideas based on past experience. At this level, the individual mark is expressed most clearly, because it contains the whole idea as your understanding of kirigami, the auxiliary talents like drawing, matching, logic … to achieve this level, then you have one fairly broad understanding of kirigami, for each category, the simple, the complexity of each method, and choose the method and style appropriate for the charcoal. Once mastered it, you can flatten almost the whole world in your way, can produce your own style, his own image in the community kirigami. Among those who express their own ideas through works in kirigami, there is obviously some people that still keep the style of the author before who they go under, and sometimes difficult to escape from that style, like a trail. But surely, there will be no doubt about love and passion for kirigami of those players 🙂
Level 5: Realize the idea of other people
You may be wondering, why level 4 is not the highest level, which is the highest level. In my point of view, then at level 4, every work is customized to author’s style, thus no matter it’s beautiful or not, it’s still achievement of author. But at this level, on the other, to express the idea of other people, other people’s mark is what left on the paper, combining author’s style and other’s idea into the design is not an easy task, especially when the idea was to not have a deep understanding of this subject. More importantly, when the work is created, others will be given, give damn it, the designer will have to accept this, like it or not. So surely it is harder in comparison with developing author’s own idea.