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Feb 23, 2012

Structural Packaging (Book Review)

structural packaging
Paul Jackson, author of more than 30 books on paper arts including The Pop-Up Book, which has been on my recommended list as long as I've had this blog, has another winner.

Structural Packaging: Design Your Own Boxes and 3D Forms presents a "step-by-step system to design packaging and other enclosed volumetric forms." For me, that means not just boxes and containers, but pop up forms that are container-ish. (Think cubes, pyramids and the like.)
I have a number of other books on packaging design, all of which have scads of wonderful templates, but none of which covers the nitty gritty process of creating the templates. In contrast, the focus of Jackson's book is to teach a simple way to create a 2D template--a "net"--from any 3D packaging form. Jackson emphasizes practical considerations such as economic use of material and the strength of the finished package. Not that the book lacks templates -- there are dozens used to illustrate specific techniques.
Who should buy this book? If you enjoy creating boxes and containers or 3d pop up forms from an idea rather than a template, you should seriously consider it. I've made my fair share of boxes in my time, yet the chapters on tab placement and methodical net creation were revelations to me.
The exercises in the book are arranged in very specific order. Readers are urged to work through the volume sequentially for greatest success. I have read it twice, now, and am very much looking forward to getting serious with some crazy boxes...twisted, or pleated...or...duplicated and fused!
Check out the video content from the book on the Laurence King Publishing site.
Structural Packaging: Design Your Own Boxes and 3-D Forms. Laurence King Publishing. 128 pages. ISBN:9781856697538
Available worldwide from Book Depository.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the publisher.
Extreme Cards and Papercrafting: pop up cards, movable and mechanical cards, digital crafts and unusual papercrafts.