- Arts and Design
Gallardo - Paper Car Project
Lamborghini Gallardo Paper Car
Paper can be used for several things. You can write on it or draw a nice portrait. One of the most spectacular and my favorite is to create a nice 3D model. In my free time I love to design car models. I think paper crafting is a very useful pastime. One of my newest model is a Lamborghini Gallardo. In this lens I would like to share my observations on it.
Creating a paper car is not a short term task. If you want to build a really good one you need lot's of time and patience. You have to love not only the ready car but also the way of the completion . Every time I'm thinking on a new model I start to surf the net looking for good ideas. I simply use my favorite search engine and set it looking for only photos, this time for "Gallardo". I try to search for the original ones, because I don't like the high tuned models. The most important is to find well detailed photos with proper viewing angles. Not so easy as say... I checked hundreds of pictures along many hours.
After I downloaded all which was up to it's task I started to select only the bests. The perfect photos are necessary to design the wire-frame of the car in a 3D modeling application. With this lens I wouldn't describe how to design the wire in a CAD application, maybe later in an other article. You can choose many different types of them, so it's up to you which is the winner. To teach how to create a model in the mentioned applications is a complete book in itself. So if you aren't familiar to use them I suggest to download a printable template from the net.
I always work with about 4 or 5 pictures only for first. These photos are enough to design the basic shape of the car. As the basic shape is close to the real one's basics I used to shrink the CAD application a little, that way I can use a photo viewer at same time. Of course you don't need to do this if you have an other display screen. As I detailing the parts depending on the lot's of photos, I always keep it in my mind, it will be a paper model. That means I have to take care of the plans and curves. I try to keep the model as simple as possible.
Less wire means smoother surface for larger plans. Of course sometimes I must break the planes with some cut-lines, otherwise the form of the car won't be realistic. It's a hard and tedious work to find the balance between too much or too less lines. Always need to keep it mind how will the paper bend or what will showed on the final paper model. I found that many times, maybe something works on the screen but it's impossible to assemble in the reality. After lot's of dead end I found the right solutions in most of the cases.
Cutting the printed forms is the next big part of the creation. I did a precise 3D model, so I don't want to cut the parts loosely. I think it's evident. As I used to say it's not a race. Cut those lines accurately. Mention that, maybe you will cut the lines for several hours, but will see the assembled model for years, so I suggest that take care of the precise cuts.
I often use ruler to bend the paper, so I can do a straight long line on a panel. It's very useful on doors or hoods for example. Nevertheless I don't waste my time on cutting the lines using a ruler too, because it's useless in the 99% of the cases. I can cut every line by hand. Think on it a little, there is very few long straight lines exists on a car. Most of the cases the lines have a little curve or those are too short to use a ruler.
Assembling the car means test, test and test... When I bend a part to it's correct shape I try it to others. I want to see how it suit for an other panel. I try to force the paper to get the right shape in itself. If every surrounding part connect properly to the next one I can glue them together.
Very important to pay attention to the symmetry. A car is an industrial product. The human eye will recover the differences easily comparing the two sides. I always used to build the two sides parallel. If I would build the right side completely and after the left, there may be difference between them.
In other words I try to make the same mistakes on both of the sides, so they will seem equal.
Usually I glue with common transparent adhesive. I try to buy a non-toxic one. I used to push a little glue to a piece of paper and it's easy to spread onto the wanted surface ( a flap for example ) with a toothpick or an other small piece of paper.
I always let the glue to harden. It's not a nice vision when the car is falling to pieces. If I wouldn't wait enough, the parts cannot be suited perfectly. Not hardened glue will release the flaps at the most unexpected situations.
Before I started to print the car I tried many types of paper. Simple typing paper is not usable here, because too thin therefore it can't hold the shape. I found that the wood-free sheet is perfect for this task. Easy to bend and glue it. This time I didn't want to use shiny photo paper.
I bought some printable foil for windshield and windows. There was the only part where I used different glue. The simple paper dedicated adhesive can't work on foil.
After I assembled a model I start to hide the edges if possible or try to hide white parts. If an edge is left on white somehow, I used to hide it with a toothpick and a little paint. It's quite hard to get the right color so I always do some tests before painting. In this part I fine-tuning the position of the wheels. The wheels are very important parts of the final vision of the model. I always try to get the perfect position of the wheel in the fender. If it needs I remove that even if it's hardened onto the body, and try it again.
I think assembling a car and using paper for this is not an easy and quick task. However I like to do that, the way of the completion, the results after many tests. I like to see the result on my shelf.