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Papercraft Orc Template

By RetSamys
Tried and tested by kids
This is the ink-saving, printer-friendly version that everyone used, there's also a full black and white version and a fully coloured version.

Papercraft Skull Template
Papercraft Santa Template

I didn't know I needed a picture book about Orcs until I saw GoblinHood's children's book called "Mein Papa ist ein Ork" (My Dad is an Orc) and the sequel "Mein bester Freund ist ein Goblin" (My Best Friend is a Goblin). I highly recommend it for kids 4+ years, old it's so amazing. And yes, they do work for kindergarten and preschool kids as well as for primary school pupils. (It's also interesting to see how the parents lean in and how well-versed they are in fantasy lore.)

Today, the author and illustrator Rudy Eizenhöfer came to my youth club to read us his stories and everyone had a wonderful time. For the occasion, I provided a time filler. Ultimately, the skull template proved to be the more popular choice due to time constraints. Still, at least some of them had fun with it and a lot of kids took the template home with them.

This template is modeled after the father Orc in the first book. Those Orcs are quite massive, they have green skin, black clothing, little pointy ears and heavy bracelets. I'm happy to report both the author and his publisher were pleased.

Of course I have to mention that I was very inspired by other kinds of papercraft templates I saw online - especially Minecraft character templates. I would have saved myself a lot of time and trouble by using one of those as a base, just for the kids, not for publishing it unless the license would allow it, of course. Unfortunately every single one didn't quite fit all my needs - for some reason I was really, really picky when it came to the arms. Also, none had a single big piece to cut, they all had parts separated. I absolutely distrust glue. Things fall apart, never to be found again. So, with much respect for people who are clearly better than me at papercrafting and making templates, I consider this one to be superior. =P :giggle:

Last year around Christmas, I made a papercraft template for a Santa nesting doll, and I like the prospect of making something for a picture book once a year. We'll see.
Oh - and I'm considering just leaving my name on everything I make. But I won't go back and edit everything in my Gallery until I find something I'm 100% happy with.

Resources used:
Tools used: the Gimp, CreaToon for the model preview in the upper left corner.
Let me know what you think!

Free art - you may:
:iconshareiconplz: Share
:iconremixiconplz: Remix
and use this work in any way you like (even commercially), under the following conditions:
:iconbyiconplz: Attribution (credit me)
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DoubleDandE's avatar
Hello, I'm from ProjectComment

Once again I have to give you a hand clap as modeling your own 2d model can be a bit tricky, but it seems you’ve pulled it off with this more complex model. I really like how you made it simple for a little kid to not lose any parts, but be able to attach it. It’s all in one piece from the looks of it and very nice. The model you presented here is blank, which is also great because it allows other people to make and draw and custom their own orc. Having it be free to use, and with the addition of crediting you, is a great way to spread your name out there, and maybe push you to build your own 2d model book in the future (I’ve seen some of those ;)). Unlike the skull, this one has those thick big lines around were to cut, and the fold lines are thinner. This helps quite a bit as it’s noticeable where to cut and won’t make things difficult.

Again the only downside to this is where the folds go. Having numbers around to show which part goes on top of which, and where it folds will help out a bit. It’s not necessarily needed, but it will help out for people that may not fully understand how/where things are needed to have the model completed. You don’t need instructions here though, I’m sure numbers will do. Again the glue label that you used in your key, could be also added to the grey areas in case the key is discarded after the model is cut out. It also saves woes and will speed up the process as they know what goes underneath another piece of the model.

Overall you’ve done an excellent job on this one. It tops your skull I have to say. The clothing is separated and adds some depth to it, giving the illusion it’s actually two pieces instead of one. The key on the left side where and what the lines means is really nice, and will help prepare those that are about to cut it out for their own pleasure. You make me want to make my own 3d paper model. ;D 

Great job on this, and keep up the good work. :thumbsup:  

RetSamys's avatar
Thank you for yet another comment! :dance:

Oh, wow, a whole book full of templates, that would be a dream! I'd need to make quite a lot more. =) We'll see.

Yes, so this one was a lot more difficult than the skull, but I pulled it off! The most difficult part, which took me several attempts, was getting the arms added to the model. As far as I know (and I looked at a lot of models and templates), no one has done this before.

The folding bugs me in this one. I mean, as you can see from the coloured version, this is pretty much all on the outside, so folding everything inwards is the most intuitive approach - and it works with the exception of the neck. The head goes a bit forward, so it's folded outwards.
And again, I have no idea how to use numbers in a practical way. I can see that confusing people even more (and people are terrible at ignoring this kind of thing). An instruction video is planned. I hope it will clear up things.

Oh, do try to make your own model! I'd be happy to help you out with what little experience I have.

DoubleDandE's avatar
You're Welcome. XD I just had to comment on the orc after seeing and reading up on the skull. 

I can see that it is. The video will be a neat idea, especially since it'll not only help people with the model, but also help bringing people to take notice of the model and of the author's book as well. 
The numbers might not be a great thing so there's no need to do them if you don't want to. 

Oh great. I shall try my best then. 

You're welcome. :clap: 
Zara-Arletis's avatar

Oh my god this looks awesome! Two things I love - crafting and fantasy :D I'm new to papercraft, but this looks pretty clear to put together. I will let you know when I print the design if it works for me ^_^ I love that you went to the trouble of making the design ink-friendly. It's not hard to find patterns out there, but most I've looked at are heavily colored and printing them takes a toll. It's also great that you did it in one piece. I completely agree with you on the glue thing. Even if it sticks, the glue can give the final craft a lumpy look (or that could be just me?). 

I do think this kind of post would be great with a video clip of you doing the folds, or even just audio instructions. For newbies like me it cuts down on the number of attempts ^_^  I think my son would enjoy it too - it's great that you put this together for a kid's reading group. Stuff like that is so much fun. Anyway, thank you for sharing! 
RetSamys's avatar
Wooh! Wonderful. I'm glad you like it. So cool that you want to try it out, I definitely want to hear how it turns out.

I plan on doing videos for all three of my papercraft templates, but I don't know if I'll be able to make it this year, it depends on how much time I have. Maybe I'll have the opportunity to partner up with a friend who is planning something more extensive in that direction...

So, by making a box for Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans, I recently found out that it also depends on the kind of paper you use. Thicker paper might be easier to glue together with regular glue. But you're right, you have to be careful.

Thank you for commenting!
Afterskies's avatar
As with others, I would recommend that you do some sort of instructional video, say on Youtube, and link it. Another potential aid would be to have a separate file, reversed with text on the inside to designate "front, right foot, left foot, front head," et cetera to help with assembly.

I can really appreciate the time and effort you put into this; at first glance this seems somewhat simple, but I can tell you put quite a bit into this and it looks quite creative.
RetSamys's avatar
Maybe I'll have time for a video on Christmas. Maybe.
That separate file idea is interesting. Maybe I could also add proposed colours for the different parts.

Thank you! It is somewhat simple. The maths behind it were tremendously easy, compared to making sure everything fits in a cone structure. Still, it took me a week. So I certainly appreciate your comment!
CrystalPastelKitty's avatar
How do you do these?
RetSamys's avatar
Well, there are a lot of steps involved, but the very short answer is: idea, maths and GIMP.

The slightly longer version is that first I have come up with what I want it to look like approximately. In this case, I remembered Minecraft papercraft templates that I had seen one and a half year ago. Then I had to figure out how I would build it. If you had to build a cube in school once, you have the basics, you need to fit six faces together. But not all of the faces necessarily need a glueing area, so you can attach another cuboid to that one. I had to make sure nothing overlapped so it would be possible to build in only 3 dimensions. ;-) I could have tried it out with real paper, but I used my mind once I added more squares and rectangles on the computer. There was a lot of optimisation. Once I printed it out and put it together, I noticed I needed to make even more changes, so I did that.

In Gimp, I largely used the rectangle selection tool and saved the selection as a path and afterwards, I added some more paths.

To print it out, I either printed out the image as such or I put it in a Word document with 0.5 cm borders and landscape orientation. Cut out where needed. Fold inwards, except for the neck part. Glue where needed - but to be honest, it's easier to use tape! Done.

Let me know if you would like to know any details or if you have any other questions.
darkaku's avatar
That seems like a rather complicated design
RetSamys's avatar
Oh. That's a bummer, because I thought it was quite simple and I wanted to make something more complex in the future. This is just a minecraft-y blocky figure and I already have ideas for low-poly objects (no idea if I can actually pull it off).
From a designer's point of view, it's not all that complicated, it only took me a week to make it from scratch - that includes testing it out on paper, optimising it to this point and making it publishable.

I was able to do it with kids without a problem, bit I also was there for every step. Maybe a set of instructions would help...
darkaku's avatar
I meant, this was much more complicated than the skull, I guess I could figure that out with some time but it sure got a lot of parts.
Anyways I'd love to see how far you can take paper-craft, Low poly stuff from paper seems incredibly hard to create but we'll see when you try (:
A manual is a great idea but it's also hard to make if you want to explain each step in a drawing or text
I'll just remind you that if you want to improve in drawing stuff, sketching regularly will be a better practice, though paper craft things really improve your technical skills and knowledge
RetSamys's avatar
I have enough paper to do it with trial-and-error (my favourite algorithm). Low poly on paper probably comes down to pre-creasing the edges and then assembling it in a way that makes it rigid enough to keep a certain shape.

I should just make a video. Speed it up 500%.

Oh, I miss sketching daily. I don't have time. It has to be routine and right now, there's too much interrupting me.
darkaku's avatar
A video is a good idea
And as for the sketches, consider what you want to do later in life and where you want to improve, because by your sketches that I saw I can tell that you do have the needed skills, you just have to improve them, the question is whether that's what you want to do. If you do, try having a project that includes sketching, you can even put sketching into your papercraft by printing your sketches on the surfaces of the template, thus adding detail to your papercraft characters
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