Saturday, 9 May 2015


The time had come to face the musician I had feared the most since the beginning, the sousaphonist. It wasn't because of the dwarf, who was similar to the rest of the band but for the instrument, the sousaphone. Big, curved and with not a bit of information on how to fold it, at least that I knew. It was a challenge. Here is the end result: my sousaphonist:

The last dwarves I have folded have all had small innovations that enrich the band. This one wasn't going to be different. Using the traditional Joisel's dwarf base I have added two grafts that let me get a long moustache and squared shoes to the model. In the following pic you can see the grafts:

And the final CP, that luckily ends up being an easy 32x32 grid instead of the 28x28 one of Joisel's model:

Collapsing this dwarf is easy, very similar to the traditional dwarf. I used for my model a 62x62 cm kozo paper. We start from the CP:

Then we fold the graft inside to get the traditional CP and we collapse it as we would collapse the traditional dwarf:

The graft is visible in the hat and shoes that are square instead of pointed:

Finally, inside the face you can find two little flaps, one on each side, that properly lengthened form the moustache:

As I have already said my challenge with this model was the instrument. In the following photos you can see Joisel's sousaphonist in the Origami Museum in Zaragoza (EMOZ):

The bell is made up of ten divisions. Also, you can notice the tube starts with a lot of paper and ends with just a little. These two things led me to a simple conclusion, I had to use a long triangle. And if I wanted to be a purist it had to be symmetrical, that means it had to be isosceles. I needed to divide it in ten long stripes, each of them with 3 sides, one visible all along the tube and the other two to be released at the front part to form the bell. That was 10x3=30 divisions, If I added two more divisions I could use them to close the model.

Finally I would divide the triangle in 32ths. I got the following CP:

Let us see some pics of the collapsing process, first with the proof paper:

I use methyl cellulose and clothes pegs to close the paper

After folding the 32ths we fold the vertical lines that will be used to turn around the tube:

For the final model I used a kozo paper triangle of  24x72 cm. I painted it with deep gold acrylic:

The bends are made  using curved folds and being careful not to tear the paper

We can use the dwarf to measure where the bends have to be folded:
There is a moment in which we have to keep modelling the instrument with the dwarf inside:

We make the final adjustments to the model with methyl cellulose and strings or wire as usual:

And we come out with the final model:

Finally, I added a little crane. This incredible traditional Japanese model had to be present in my music band: