Step 2: Create Foldables for Each Platonic Solid

Included in the scripts zip file were some GIMP xcf files that will make it easier for you to prepare an image that can be converted into the foldables. Enter into the scripts directory and you should find files named


Open the first one using The Gimp. You will see that it is a pentagon border. Now we need to fill this border with an image, preferably one that look the same no matter what side you turn it on in order to give the faces uniformity. Kaleidoscoped images are great for this.

Now you're invited to find an image you would like to kaleidoscope into a face for the solid and open it in the gimp. Remember that it has to be at least big enough to fit inside that border, so compare the selected image size to the border size to make sure it will fit.

For the face image I like using images of fractals. You can explore/create your own fractals using your choice of software. Free/Open Source choices include Gnofract4D and Xaos. From these programs you can export an image that can be then opened in the Gimp.

Now you can kaleidoscope the image using the GIMP plugin you installed earlier. Just go to Filters->Distort->Kaleidoscope. Use 5 (or a multiple of 5) in this case. For the other faces you will use a multiple of the # of sides on the given face. Set the Angle 2 so that one of the reflection lines is perfectly vertical. If you can't get it perfect, then use the GIMP's rotate tool to get it right.

Save the kaleidoscoped image. Return to the frame you opened up in the beginning. File->Open as Layers... the file you just saved.

If the image is too big, scale it down so it will fit in the fram. Now move the image so its center is in the middle of the frame. You may have to repeat this a couple of times to get the fit just right.

In the layers dialogue, right click on the "Bordered Layer Mask" layer, click "Alpha to Selection". Now right click on the imported layer, "Add Layer Mask", choose "Selection" and OK.

Delete the 2 layers with "mask" in their name, right click on border layer and "Merge Down:. This image is now ready to be ran through the tiling script. "Save as..." it now to a familiar directory and repeat this step for all 4 other files listed above.

For each of the faces you have created you can run the magic script that will convert it to a foldable. Just go to Filter->Render->Foldable->[choose the right shape for each respective face].

Lastly, you will print each foldable image. You may need to rotate the image 90 degrees or change the page alignment to fit it on the page tightly. The face templates are specially designed to ensure a resolution of 300px/in when the image is printed right to the edges of an 8 1/2x11" Letter page. I print them out using 308px/in for all them to give a little room for my non full-bleed printer. Thin cardstock or photo paper give the most robust results. Adjust the number of copies you print to suit how many lights you would like to cover with lanterns.
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<p>For me the directions are clear as mud.<br><br>I do what I think you're asking and I'm not getting what you're getting.</p><p>Clearly, I'm doing something wrong. And, I'm really confused on this.<br></p><p>I bring up the mask. I create a fractal. Not really clear where the multiple<br>of 5 applies. I'm using GIMP 2.9. Perhaps you mean &quot;mirrors&quot;?<br><br>When I get to the Layer Mask / Selection part. All I get is the dodec mask.<br><br>Merging down gives me nothing but the dodec mask.</p>
Hey, this is probably gonna sound like a bit of a stupid question, but what distro is that?<br />
Lots of good stuff in this instructable. Adding it to my favorites. Love the GIMP and can use this to learn more. Thanks for posting it!
WOW..that is SO cool!

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