Trying Origami with the DC Superheroes

DC Super Heroes Origami. 2015. Capstone. By John Montroll.

Disclaimer: A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

In the last few days of 2015, I was battling a terrible cold. The only thing I could do was binge watch Elementary and do some origami, but this wasn’t just any origami. It was John Montroll’s DC Super Heroes Origami: 46 Folding Projects for Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and More! that I got from Capstone in exchange for an honest review. I got through most of it (and I mean A LOT) as you can see.

DC Super Hero Origami Attempt. 2015. Taken by Ardo Omer.
A lot!

So what’s origami? It’s the Japanese art of folding paper into various shapes and decorative designs. I haven’t done it in a very long time. As I kid, I was taught the simpler boat, hat and plane designs. The most intricate thing I’ve ever created was the paper crane in Grade 3, so it’s safe to say that origami and I are estranged friends.

Out of the 46 designs in this book, I’ve tried 33 of them, and I’ve done so multiple times for most of them. The back of the book contains origami paper with the required designs. There are a few copies of the same design, allowing you to try the design repeatedly, as well as a table of contents to help you find your desired character/object (Batman’s Batcycle, Wonder Woman’s Invisible Jet, Lex Luthor, etc.). According to the book’s introduction, “The diagrams…are drawn in the internationally approved Randlett-Yoshizawa style,” and there is a rundown of symbols for what the different lines mean (e.g. fold in front vs fold behind). The beginning of the book, just after the table contents and introduction, let’s you practice the different types of folds such as the squash fold, petal fold, etc. until you feel comfortable enough to tackle the rest of the book.

To say that I suck at this is an understatement. The following picture shows the epic fails of the bunch. The ones that were never going to look like what they were supposed to look like.

DC Super Hero Origami Attempt. 2015. Taken by Ardo Omer.
Ugh, Aquaman.

The Aquaman one nearly triggered a homicidal rage, before I decided a break was in order. Thankfully, these were all either 2 or 3 star designs meant for the intermediate/advance:

  • Batarang (3 Stars)
  • Clark Kent’s Glasses (2 stars)
  • Green Arrow’s Hat (2 stars)
  • Lex Luthor (3 stars)
  • Sun (3 stars)
  • Wonder Woman Symbol (3 stars)
  • Batcycle (3 stars)
  • Flash Symbol (2 stars)
  • Aquaman (3 stars)
  • Nightwing Symbol (3 stars)
  • Fortress of Solitude Key (3 stars)

These are the slightly better fails of the bunch:

DC Super Hero Origami Attempt. 2015. Taken by Ardo Omer.
Looking slightly better.

I got a lot farther with these, but there was that one step that seemed to halt progress or made it…not look exactly like it’s supposed to in the book. They are:

  • Bat-symbol (2 stars)
  • Eagle (3 stars)
  • Green Lantern Symbol (1 star) *this one hurt my soul*
  • Green Lantern B’DG (2 stars)
  • Wonder Woman’s Arrow (2 stars)
  • Batwing (3 stars)
  • Storm (2 stars)
  • Robin (3 stars)
  • Krypto (3 stars)
  • Batman (3 stars)
  • Clayface (3 stars)
  • Penguin (2 stars)
  • S-Shield (3 stars)

Of course, my entire experience wasn’t plagued with failure. I did complete some of them successfully (some even on the first try!):

  • Shazam! Symbol (2 stars)
  • Jimmy Olsen’s Camera (1 star)
  • Wonder Woman’s Sword (2 stars)
  • Silver Bracelets (1 star)
  • Wonder Woman’s Tiara (1 star)
  • Mad Hatter’s Top Hat (2 stars)
  • Martian Manhunter Symbol (1 star)
  • The Riddler’s Cane (2 stars)
  • Daily Planet Building (1 star)
  • Kryptonite (2 stars)

Overall, I’d say that it was 90% me being bad at this and 10% improvements that need to be made. I think the biggest improvement would be to explain what the arrow on the back of the papers (or the white side of the instructions) means. Would I need to make sure the arrow is point up in order to correctly orient the page at the start? I think a lot of the confusion that led to my frustration was that part but otherwise, it’s a pretty simple book to follow, and it will require a lot of practice (a lot and a lot of practice).

Ardo Omer

Ardo Omer

Former WWAC editor. Current curmudgeon and Batman's personal assistant. Icon art by Diana Sim.