It’s one thing to craft paper toys, but making them move in surprising ways is certainly awe-inspiring. This is what the Japanese paper engineer, Haruki Nakamura, accomplishes. What’s more, all his delightful toys and objects use simple everyday materials.
The exciting part is the surprise element; one never knows how the toys will react until you play with them. To make his paper toys move and jump, Nakamura makes use of rubber bands and paper tension. The movements are triggered in various ways, such as by poking, tipping or dropping them on a flat surface. For example, his paper armadillo curls up in a ball at the touch of a finger, his dolls move in surprising ways when dropped, and the like.
Nakamura, who was born in Toyama Prefecture, Japan, is a self-taught paper crafter. He learned the tricks of the trade from the ‘Encyclopedia of Paper Crafts’ when he was 27. He honed his skills for a few years and ended up creating these exquisite paper toys. He uses colored papers and scissors and puts them together, piece by piece.
Nakamura is able to mix engineering with his intended characters in designing his toys. His ‘mechanical origami’ is different from the traditional Japanese origami. Although he folds his paper toys in traditional ways, he makes them unfold and come alive.
His unique papercraft toys instantly became popular with the people. He even exhibited them at the art market in Japan. The best part is you can order his papercraft kits from his website, but only in Japan. Some toys are also available on Amazon.
Nakamura’s motivation is to entertain and give joy to people through his creations. In an email to awesomebyte.com, he says, “The goal is to make work that you’ll never forget once you see it.”