Cera Cera Paper Automata • 1/31/06
This is some of the coolest type of paper arts I’ve found yet. Over at Cera Cera, they sell downloadable paper model kits for automata. What are Automata? Well, I’m not 100% sure but I believe that these are related to automatons which are supposed to be robotic type creations that move and talk without the influence of human beings. I’m actually thinking of so-called “steampunk” technology (a la Gibson and Sterling’s “The Difference Engine” and the movie Wild Wild West).
However, the key difference here is that these are made out of PAPER. Now, before you think you’re going to make some sort of robotic creation out of paper, I have to tell you that the majority of these are actually hand-crank type models. But still, it’s fascinating that they actually move!
The company basically sells downloadable digital files (in Acrobat format) that you print out on artpaper and then cut out and construct them. They have a number of brilliantly colored person and animal kits for sale. The cool thing is that you don’t really need any special tools to create these paper automata other than materials you probably have, such as an Xacto knife, cutting mat, ruler, glue, pens, scissors, and a simple thin wooden stick or dowel for getting into those hard to reach places. According to the site, they say each model can take about 2 to 3 hours to make depending on your experience with paper construction.
Here’s an example of one of their models. This is supposed to be a “paratrooper” who’s jumping out of a plane. They have an animated gif on the site that shows how it works… basically when you turn the crank he moves up and down in the air so it looks like he’s falling out of the sky. Did I mention this is constructed ONLY out of paper? Very neat. The dimensions on this particular model are 9cm x 12cm x 16cm.
Note the really detailed directions in the cutout documents that you download. It’s nice that they provide excellent instructions along with the cutouts so you know exactly what to do.Continue reading "Cera Cera Paper Automata"