Origami Willow Bonsai  1 – Trunk

Origami Willow Bonsai 1 – Trunk


This is the first of four videos that will show you how to make this Origami Willow Bonsai tree. To begin with you’ll need to create a wire frame. The center trunk looks something like this. About a foot high, and about another foot curled around the bottom, to tie the tree down once you put it in a pot. So you start off by cutting some longer branches. and attaching those to the base. And then shorter branches and attaching those. So you end up with something looking like this. Now you want to create the paper mache glue. Take four cups of water and put it in a pot, and bring that to a boil. Then take another cup of water, and add one cup of flour to it. Stirring briskly to get as many of the lumps out as you possibly can. Now take your flour water mixture and pour it slowly into the boiling water. Stirring the whole time. It should thicken up right away as you start adding the mixture in. And bring it back to a boil, then turn the heat off. And keep stirring to work out as many as the lumps as you can. Then add a little bit of salt to it. This will keep it from going mouldy if you’re storing the glue for any length of time. This is five cups of glue, you probably won’t need this much for a single bonsai tree. Now that you let your glue cool a little bit. You can start applying the paper strips, to the wrieframe that you created Take the paper mache glue, and apply it to the paper strips along both sides. Then wrap the paper strip around the wire frame. Something like this. So after the first pass you get something that looks like this. There’s five or six layers wrapped around the bottom. And a layer or two wrapped around the branches at the top. So you let that sit for a day, and dry out. And you end up with something that looks like this. Nice and hard ready for another layer of paper mache. So you want to try to squeeze out any of the paper that hasn’t quite adhered to the trunk, to make it as small as possible. Then you want to build up around the base. First applying a layer paper mache glue to soften things up. And then applying another five or six layers of paper to the bottom. And perhaps one more layer of paper to branches at the top. So you get something that looks like this. So I’m going to let this sit for another day then come back and put another layer around the trunk to thicken it up a little more. Then let that dry for another day. So this is what you end up with after the paper mache is done. Of course you can make the branches and the trunk as thick as you like. So after a day of drying, you want to apply the paper for the trunk. This is a fine woodgrain paper that I picked up at a fine paper shop. So you soak it down with water first to make it nice and pliable, so it will mold nice onto the trunk. Apply paper mache glue to both sides of the paper. And then apply a layer of paper mache glue to the trunk itself. Then apply the paper to the trunk… yes that’s the neighbour’s dog crying :-/ So where ever there’s a corner you want to create a cut so that the paper will fold nicely, and cut off any excess so you don’t get too many layers thick. And it ends up looking something like this. Do the same for the branches at the top. And after the first layer of bark paper you end up with something looking like this. You let that sit for a day and dry. And it comes out looking like this. and as you can see, or maybe you can’t see, you can still see the newsprint under the first layer of bark, so we’re going to apply another layer. Again, soak your bark paper in water to make it nice and soft. Apply a layer of glue to the frame to soften it up. And the branches end up looking something like this, working out the bubbles as best you can. And then finally you want to add another layer of bark paper to the trunk. And it ends up looking like this. And there you have the trunk of your origami willow bonsai. Subtitles by the Amara.org community

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