Fold an Origami Logo in Photoshop

Logo’s following an Origami style have been popular due to the fact that you can get an impressive effect with a few strategic “folds”. Impressed with the ones I’ve seen I decided to create my own: a green origami bird for the imaginary Origami Corporation.

In this tutorial I’ll show you the process I took to design this logo, and in the end you’ll have your own version and the knowledge to make more. Our final product will look like the image below, so when you’re ready fire up Photoshop and we’ll get started.

Step 1 – Setting The Document Up

First begin by creating a new document in Photoshop, the canvas size should be 540 by 400 pixels. We’re going to have a dark background so get your gradient tool ready and set the two colors to be a light black (#3e3e3e) and a dark gray (#565656). Set the gradient to radial and then drag it from the center of the canvas to the left edge.

Step 2 – Sketching and Planning

The tricky part of creating an origami logo is that you have to carefully plan out the folds; folds that don’t seem plausible can break your design. What I recommend doing is browsing sites like Flickr and look at some real origami. By studying real origami you may notice a few things, for example the shapes we’re limited to are triangles, diamonds and squares. With this and some other things you may have noted in mind begin sketching the bird shape below.

I used a small white brush (3px and 100% hardness) to draw this out. A good technique to get the straight edges we need is to hold shift in between clicks with our brush. This will give you a straight line from your first click to your second click. When you’re done turn the sketch’s layer opacity down to 20%.

Step 3 – Creating the Midsection

At this point I chose a 3 color palette to use on the logo, a base color, a lighter version of the base color and a darker version. You can see my palette to the right which uses a light green (#d9f679), green (#cbe86b) and a dark green (#b3ce5a).

Begin making the origami bird’s midsection by using your Pen Tool (P) to trace it out from the sketch. Change the color to your base color (#cbe86b) and it should look like the image below:

Duplicate the shape layer you just made and change the color to a lighter color (#d9f679). This layer will be our first fold in the logo which will go across the neck. Select this layer with your pen tool and delete the anchor points illustrated below:

step3_c

RollOver

Step 4 – Making Wings

For our first wing, which will be in front and above the rest of the layers, ready your Pen Tool (P) and set the color to our base color (#cbe86b). Then just simply trace your wing, remember that the bottom two anchors in your triangle should be touching the chest of the bird.

To make the second wing, duplicate (CTRL+J) our first wing layer and change the color to the darkest (#b3ce5a) in our palette. Then grab the anchor point at the top of the triangle and drag it up and backwards. After that place the layer behind the other layers.

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