Top 10...For Now: Anime Papercrafts
posted on by Gia Manry
Origami, the art of folding paper into cool shapes like cranes and swans without the benefit of glue or scissors, is a 400-year-old artform that most people don't spend much time on outside of third grade art class. But the form has evolved into what's known as papercraft: you use the resources available to you- glue, scissors, the Internet and your own home printer being primary tools --to put together more complex and colorful designs. It's more popular in Japan than in the U.S., which may explain the following examples of anime papercraft.
10. Chiyo-chan's Father
We'll start the countdown with what is probably the least technically impressive offering, but one that will make any Azumanga Daioh fan smile. It's nice to see that someone felt that it would be more time-worthy to create Chiyo-chan's dream-father/cat than Chiyo-chan herself, or one of the other stars of the slice-of-life comedy. (Via Anime Arimasu)
Even if you're not a fan of Tenchi Muyo's syrupy-sweet Sasami, but you have to admit this looks kind of cool: the white lines make her look like some kind of digital projection. (Via Gundam and Robot Anime)
8. Ichigo Kurosaki
Most anime papercraft seems dedicated to mechs or to cute and/or sexy girls, but don't think we'd leave you without a couple of male anime characters...or at least one. This SD Ichigo from Bleach is adorable, although he looks an awful lot more at peace than the original character. (Via PaperModelz)
7. SD Miku Hatsune
As elsewhere, Miku Hatsune- an anime-styled character designed entirely to sell a singing-voice simulator called Vocaloid2, -is excessively popular, but this cute chibi Miku, complete with leek accessories, is definitely the cutest. (Via Dari Diamond)
6. Alucard's "Joshua"
Hellsing leading vampire Alucard has two primary weapons: the Jackal and the Joshua. This is a papercraft replica of the Joshua, complete with the text that reads "Hellsing Arms 454 Casull". Why spend a hundred fifty on a metal replica when mere paper will do the trick? (Via Bongo Papercraft)
5. One Piece
Sure, you could make a Luffy papercraft, but he'd be awfully lonely without the rest of the Straw Hats crew from One Piece. This dedicated fan made him a Zoro, a Nami, an Usopp, a Sanji, a Nico Robin, and a Tony Tony Chopper. Now, where's the boat? (Via Gundam and Robot Anime)
Shinji not included, and huzzah for that. The EVA-01 unit does come with its gun, though, and all the colors are pretty impressive too. And a bit cheaper than a Revoltech, although less posable than its sister Evangelion figures. (Via Blog Arts Center)
The EVA was pretty impressive, but this take on the Dai-Gurren- the third-level mech in the Russian nesting dolls that are the Gurren Lagann mechs -is even more so, even though it looks like it might have needed some help standing up properly. PaperKraft
Phantasy Star is a game, not an anime, but the style is undeniable and papercraft of character Lumia is nearly flawless. Papercraft models of humans are almost never going to look really good because it's hard to keep paper from looking too blocky, but somehow, the Japanese always pull it off. (Via Moekami)
1. Howl's Moving Castle
Papercraft of machines and buildings and anything that features hard edges is in concept easier than that of people because the former can (and usually do) look somewhat blocky. But this papercraft of the titular castle in Howl's Moving Castle is phenomenal. It took 72 hours to build, and as an added bonus, you can watch a time-lapse of its creation. Enjoy! (Via Djibnet)
To close out, the inevitable question is typically "where can I get the instructions and print-outs for these?" They're not always made available, but if you click the source links we've provided, some of them will include links to the files needed. Hop to it, because it's a lot cheaper than buying figures!
this article has been modified since it was originally posted; see change history