Artist Greg Olijnyk makes incredible sculptures and dioramas out of cardboard, glue, and toothpicks (with a little help from coffee and whiskey.) Among his creations is David vs. G 2.0, a retelling of the David vs. Goliath story with a tiny cardboard samurai taking down a gigantic robot. His robot assembly line is fantastic too.
Marc Hagan-Guirey – aka “the dark king of kirigami” – creates marvels with paper, a ruler, a sharp blade, and an equally sharp eye. For Le Corbusier Paper Models, he created templates and step-by-step guides so patient crafters can cut and fold their own mini-models of 10 iconic buildings by modernist architect Le Corbusier.
Looking for a fun and challenging activity to do at home? Artist Byriah Loper’s book is filled with designs and techniques for making some incredible folded polyhedral paper sculptures. You’ll need a variety of different types of paper, a bone folder, and a few other supplies to complete your own paper art. Definitely not for beginners.
Artist Peter Dahmen shows off a series of intricate paper-cut sculptures, greeting cards, and packaging designs that he’s created over the years. Some of them are one-off personal projects, while others are available as DIY tutorials on his website. Check out more of his sculptures here.
Karakuri is the Japanese art of making papercraft automata. Originally published in Japan by artist and “paper engineer” Keisuke Saka, this book is filled with designs for fourteen different Karakuri models, including a tea-serving robot and a penguin on an iceberg that moves when you turn its crank. Best for ages 13+.
Jeremy Messersmith’s heartfelt folk tune looks back fondly on his childhood days playing video games. The track is accompanied by a wonderful papercut animation by Eric Power that includes imagery from classic games like Joust, Ms. Pac-Man, Galaga, Tetris, and Asteroids. From the album Mixtape for the Milky Way.
Russian Papercraft artists Northpoly created this larger-than-life bust of Arnold Schwarzenegger entirely from cardboard. The image is based on his appearance in Red Heat, and was displayed at the 2019 Synergy Global Forum, where Ahnold was a guest speaker. You can buy templates of Northpoly’s other sculptures over on Etsy.
Cloud’s Buster Sword from Final Fantasy VII is one of the coolest weapons in gaming history. While a real world version would be too heavy to effectively wield, one made from cardboard is totally manageable. Watch as Crafty Transformer turns a bunch of corrugated paper into a lightweight replica of the iconic combat tool.
Artist Ayumi Shibata creates incredible 3-dimensional works of art by painstakingly cutting and layering sheets of paper into cityscapes, forests, and other locales. Her works are inspired by the impact that humans have on their environments, and range in size from tiny to room-filling.
Japanese designer Harukiru has an impressive papercrafting skill. He loves to take packaging from food and drinks and turn it into miniature sculptures. Check out some of his favorites in this clip, then watch him in action as he transforms a Pringles can into a Pringles man.
Office supplies maker Viking Direct surprised its employees by installing a 43 foot-long dragon made out of paper in their office. A few employees worked with artist Andy Singleton for 10 days to build the impressive sculpture. It’s now installed in a school.
The linear windows of Frank Lloyd Wright’s iconic structures are the perfect subject for Marc Hagan-Guirey’s book, which comes with 14 cut-and-fold models based on buildings from the Frederick C. Robie House to Taliesin West and the Johnson Wax building.
Japanese paper goods company Triad presents a wonderful series of notepads which are sliced in such a way that they reveal intricate sculptures of locations and objects as each layer is peeled away. They’re currently sold out, but it sounds like they’ve got more in the works.
Kelli Anderson’s This Book Is a Planetarium, features six usable pop-up constructions, including a tiny planetarium, a Spirograph-like drawing machine, a secret decoder ring, and an acoustic amplifier. Each object is accompanied by an explanation of the science behind it.