My name is Ben Friesen. I am an Origami artist from Brooklyn, New York.
I've been folding since I was at least five years old. My mom got me a dinosaur origami book. I was one of those kids who was very ADD and she wanted to find something that would keep me still and quiet for more than five minutes at a time and I loved dinosaurs so she got me a dinosaur origami book and I've been folding ever since.
It started with very simple stuff and then you work your way up to some of the more complex things. In 2009 I started my own little origami company, Friesen Folding, and I've done lessons, corporate events, birthday parties, bar mitzvahs, wedding decorations, Christmas ornaments, you name it. Anything that can be folded with paper people are interested in, but the thing I love the most is teaching people.
I've been doing lessons for about five years. I've got students who are from three years old up to about ninety three. It really does run in a very large range. My favorite thing that I've gotten to do with that is I've gotten to work with the New York Times, I've worked with vogue.com.
The New York Public Library had a really exhibit I got to help them with and the Central Park Conservatory had an event that I got to help them with, as well, so I've done a bunch of things.
The best thing so far, though, is I did an ad campaign with the AdCouncil that actually aired during hurricane Sandy, for recovery relief funds, where they took dollar bills and they folded them up into different origami shapes. So, I got to do some fun stop motion animation with that. It was nice to see my work actually be helpful in a way that I didn't think it would be, before. I assumed it would be for some tsunami or hurricane in some other part of the country and lo and behold I lived through hurricane Sandy in Brooklyn right near Guana’s and got to actually see my work help people through that, which has been great.
But, to be able to take something that's as simple as a square sheet of paper, I mean, everybody's got it in their office, on their desk, everyone has this available to them, and to be able to turn it into something without scissors, without glue that is something much more impressive. So, the best way to reach me, if you have any interest in events or lessons or parties is at friesenfolding.com.
And now I'd like to show you how to fold a few origami models.