When working with paper, it’s always fun to learn new techniques. I love finding new ideas that might transfer over to paper jewelry and paper bead projects.
I picked up The New Encyclopedia of Origami and Papercraft Techniques by Ayako Brodek as an impulse buy while shopping at my local craft store.
This book labels itself as a “comprehensive visual guide to traditional and contemporary techniques” and, to be truthful, it does cover a wide range of techniques. It has chapters on origami, pop-ups, paper sculpture, bookbinding, quilling, weaving, paper cutting, collage, paper mache, paper pulping, and paper making.
Every page is filled with how-tos and lots of color photos of artist’s projects.
The Good Stuff
There is a little bit of everything in here. I really liked the quilling section and I’ve been inspired to make some quilled paper pendants.
There is also a really nice section on paper sculpture. There are some beautiful plates and a pitcher that look just like clay pottery. The author does a good job explaining what is needed and the instructions include photos with most steps.
The Not So Good Stuff
I was a little confused by some of the step-by-step projects showed obviously a different project than the final piece. For example, there is a project which shows how to make a paper mache mask. The photo which shows the completed mask is obviously not the one shown being created in the instructions.
Also, since it is a fairly short book — only 160 pages — it has to gloss over the fine details and the book is a little too simplified. There were times that I wish that Brodek had gone more deeply into each of the topics.
But in the end…
Oh the whole, though, I really enjoyed The New Encyclopedia of Origami and Papercraft Techniques. While it might not be as detailed as it could be, it’s a great book for getting a broad overview of a wide range of artistic paper techniques.