Origami Baluchitherium

Still catching up here. Last week, as previously mentioned, was the annual Origami USA Convention. Robert Lang led his annual design challenge, and this year’s subject was a prehistoric animal, non-dinosaur. I had considered this topic for a while, and settled on an Ice-Age mammal, a.k.a. Megafuana. I mean, how could you not like the name, Mega-fauna? It means giant animal!

I had made a start on a Megaceros (giant horns), a.k.a., the Irish Elk, an extinct deer which has the largest antlers of any member of the deer family, up to 3 meters across! I had used my Moose as a starting point, and changed the proportions to get even bigger antlers. But once I got to the point where it was time to sculpt the model it became clear this approach wasn’t going to work. It didn’t look distinctly deer-like enough, and working out the details of the antlers would require some time, and probably a deeper redesign going all the way back to the base. Else I’d just end up with a funny-looking moose.

So I put it aside for a while to give it some thought. And then suddenly it was Friday, and that evening I would be setting up my exhibit, so I if I was to participate in the challenge I’d have to come up with something fast!

Luckily I had another idea in mind: a Baluchitherium. This extinct giant may have been the largest mammal ever to walk on land! It was as tall as a giraffe and had the girth of an elephant, and although it was a member of the Rhinoceros family it had no horn on its head. So I combined the back half of my elephant with a long neck and a head with ears and snout similar to the moose. I folded one test out of a 10″ sheet of kami and then went straight on the display model, made of a 20″ square of Wyndstone. And it came out pretty well, if I say so myself.

The challenge display was full of diverse and exciting work, and I was happy to be a part of it. And as for the Irish Elk? It’s just as well I didn’t do that because Robert folded one that totally kicked ass!

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