Origami Design Secrets (second edition) : Robert Lang

As ever, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is that a second edition of Robert Lang’s Origami Design Secrets” is available. The bad news is you’re going to want to buy it, even if you have the first edition. Here’s a brief summary from the author, detailing the main changes.

  • All figures have a new color scheme for better clarity
  • A few new diagrams: silverfish, elk, organist
  • More detailed instructions for the scaled koi
  • The original chapter 12 on box pleating is greatly expanded
  • Two new chapters (13 & 14) on polygon packing
  • Assorted small errors are corrected
  • The chapter on algorithms (with all the math formulas) has been

Overall, 200 pages of new material have been added and the page count has increased from 584 to 758. It’s quite rare that any publishers allow the author such leeway to revise a book, often you are limited to correcting mistakes. It’s a tribute to both the author and the publisher (CRC Press) that such major updates have been allowed.

This book is without doubt the best guide to creating origami that has ever been published and I suspect it will retain the crown forever. Lang goes through the various techniques and methods one can use to create and adapt origami, with the exception of my own referred method, “Fold and Hope”. Their are models and practical examples of techniques, all written in clear, accurate language. Quite simply, all creative folders should own this book if they have any interest in developing their skills. Even if they have no such interest, they should buy it – it’s that good.

You (or your partner) may baulk at paying nearly £40 for a book, but 20 pages of expert guidance for a pound seems good value to me. In any case, ebay is likely to be full of people selling their first editions in order to replace with the second. Or maybe they will hedge their bets and wait for the 3rd edition, presumably with 1000 pages 😉