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So, I really want to make my own paper toy, I have all the stuff on my computer (3d modeling, Pepakura Designer), but I have no idea where to start. I want to make something original and different, but I can't go too far with my first one. I was wondering if some of you experienced creators could give me some advice, like where you get inspiration for things.

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Doodle man doodle!!, starting with several characters helps as it gives you a range of ideas in your style. I'm usually at my best when i'm supposed to be doing something else - train journeys etc, but i'd advise to keep a pad on ye at al times, any and everything can spark you off. (I suffer from creative insomnia at times, having to get up at 2 am because there was an idea in my head that I have to exorcise to paper otherwise i'd spend the rest of the night awake thinking about it) Inspiration can come from everywhere so keep on watching mags/books/films/life and process it all in your noodle and you might come out lucky.

Next then whittle out which ones would be best suited to papercraft. If your starting out i'd advise against curves and overly round or thin and spindly shapes as the model wont be able to support itself or be easy to model. Another thing to think of is if you have the basic shape nailed then start playing around with what else you could use it for - changing the skin is a good way to create a range of characters around a central theme.

When building the 3d model think about the construction process too - small parts are a real bugger to get right and when you unfold things having all the faces in a logical order instead of the way pepakura unfolds things is a great help too. Boxes aren't cheating. Its all a bit of trial and error really but good luck.
i got my inspiration from cartoon,comic and vinyl figure:) don`t try so hard,make it with fun and joy.cheers...
For me, it starts with the brainstorming, or the random thought you have to write down--Like Tang Mu. When I made Goovil, it started with the philosophy of good and evil together, and went into "can I make a 2 sided papertoy with different shapes on each side..." From there, it was drawing until I liked the sketch and tried to make it real.

For my Sparky toys, again it was thought that started it--what is the worst/most opposite thing that paper could become? Fire, or a matchstick. When I realized the shapes would be simple to create, it came naturally. The art came afterwords.

I've spent a fair amount of time at the library looking at art collections, architecture, photos of far off places, comic art--it is all inspiration if you look at it the right way!
I get a lot of my ideas from doodling too. I agree that more interesting and cool stuff comes when your mind is some where else.
Also I'd encourage dimensional doodling. Just turn off the computer get some paper start free form folding and gluing. You'll come up with more organic and interesting shapes than you might come across in a 3D program.
Also I find that every time I make a papertoy that inspires another. The next shape or idea comes from the one before. Kinda snowballs you know.
i actually don't use ANY 3D programs in fact my geometry comes from scanning in my original hand mangled paper forms

Hey matt i was wondering if u could tell me something.


i just made 2 toys by free folding everything and i was wondering how the F*** i can go to making a template ?

my advice to you is to think about a toy you want but dont have, then make it
I don't think you can make a working Xbox 360 out of paper... lol
about a year ago I started creating a paper toy, then got too busy curating the "concieved bully" show in pgh, so I left it behind due to on going work.
now, with all these paper designers doing their thing, and with the forever so great site of Nice Paper, I feel it's a great way to express yourself and get others involved with designing, it's changed my goals in certain ways for me to get into and on to other mediums.
so, last week I was planning to get my creative juices working with creating my first paper toy, low and behold, in the process of doing this, I came up with something completely different from my creation....thats when I brainstormed the entire process of forming a paper toy.
I understood that all of these designers who really care about their work take time into the working process, and if you do so, you'll find yourself doing much more than what you originally had planned out to begin with.
so now, I just finished my first, but still have that one I originally wanted to do, and who knows if I'll ever get back to that, because of the original, I'm forming others from it.
to me this is what stands out...the originality of your own forming(templates).
I've checked out numerous templates that are so comparable to other designers creations, and thats how some designers get crushed at the end, cause their too busy copying, wanting the superstar status instead of creating, but when you get into your own work, it feels sooo good to say it came from you and entirely you.
if you ask me, I doubt any paper toy maker does the math before the motive, because it's the forming that starts it all, and takes you for the long ride through.
AMEN, BROTHER!!! YES!! (very true!)
im currently doing all my work with pencil and paper, nutting out all the shapes and angles with my brain and trusty ruler. although theres something intensely personal about this, it is INCREDIBLY time consuming. how easy is it to use these modeling programs? and is it quick or am i going to be crying at 2 am because its just not working and ive spent 30 solid hrs just making a circle?
heads up!...ok, here is a little info on creating some paper toys with easy to produce results.
first think about what you have in mind, don't jump the gun with fancy demensions, not yet anyway.
format it simple, then get down to your's hard...but if you see it, you'll do it.
make sure you utilize a character for a 8x10 piece of paper.
don't worry about your math, not unless you love math.
at the end of your production/produced toy,take it very patient, open it, then scan it.
you can use any art or picture program to go over your diagram using the "line" instrument in that program.
now you've just created your template.
be sure you are the first to print it out and make sure to fix mistakes.
use a pencil as you create, to go over your creases and folds, and don't forget to mark up your slices and cuts in your design.
peace out
JC uno


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