About Mr. Tadokoro, an amazing paper craft artisan – Bossa on Kickstarter

Today, We would like to share with you the work of our trusted artisan, Masayuki Tadokoro.  Mr. Tadokoro is a highly skilled and artistic paper craft artisan.  He and his team of artisans handcraft the game components of Bossa CLASSIC edition one by one.  And only Mr. Tadokoro can make the components of THE ART edition, which require extremely high skill and delicate work.

CLASSIC edition tile by Shichisei Sangyo, Mr. Tadokoro’s artisan team
Only Mr. Tadokoro can make THE ART edition tiles. (“mizu”)
THE ART edition tile has a beautiful 9-layer cross-section (“hana”)

Why can he make such amazing paper tiles?

The simple, clear answer is that he has a great deal of experience in artistic work, which requires a very high level of skill and delicate handwork.  Part of this was developed in collaboration with me (Hiroshi Maeda, leader of the Bossa team), and I am very proud of that.  As a graphic designer myself, I have had many opportunities to work with Mr. Tadokoro over the past 25 years.  Some of our work has won design awards.  And sometimes when I served as a design award judge, I would design a trophy with crazy specifications to present to the winners, which he would then turn into a real thing.  Because of this long-standing relationship of trust between him and me, I had no hesitation in asking him to craft Bossa’s CLASSIC and THE ART editions.

A design award trophy made of thousands of layers of colored paper. Design: Hiroshi Maeda, Paper craft: Masayuki Tadokoro
Hiroshi Maeda, Bossa team leader (left) and Masayuki Tadokoro, paper craft artisan (right)
Video: Hand craft of Bossa – at the artisan’s workshop

Perfectly aligned foil stamping technique

The dots on Bossa tiles are foil-stamped in black and white.  In the general technique, the black and white dots are more or less misaligned because the foil is stamped twice on two different plates.  In Bossa, however, there is absolutely no misalignment.  This is because two colors are stamped at once on one plate so that the black and white dots are perfectly and precisely aligned.

To do this, a small piece of white foil is placed only where the white dot should be.  This is a very delicate process using tweezers.  Then overlap black foil on top of those and press.

After it, remove the sheet of foil.  The small pieces of white foil are removed with tweezers.  Great care must be taken not to damage them.

Combining layers of paper by hand feel

Layer different colors of dyed paper and paste them together.  The CLASSIC edition has 2 layers, and THE ART edition has 9 layers.  Using a special handmade tool, adjust the cross section so that it is not too flat, creating a comfortable “gap” to the touch, paste the sheets together. This delicate sensibility is unique to Mr. Tadokoro.

To go a little deeper, paper has a direction and a front and back. If all of these are pasted together in the same orientation, they will always be distorted.  How should they be combined?  It is not easy.  To that end, he has a secret solution, the result of his trial-and-error process.

Inspection of tile finish condition

Inspect the completed tiles.  Using a magnifying glass, each tile is checked in detail.  Only the tiles that pass the inspection are boxed.

Two sets a day? really precious!

How many sets of Bossa components can you imagine he and his team makes in a day with so much craftsmanship and so much time?  His team makes tens of CLASSIC edition sets, and only 2 to 4 sets of THE ART edition sets, which only he can make!  That’s just THE ART, don’t you think it’s really precious?

CLASSIC edition
THE ART edition “mizu”
THE ART edition “hana”

Thank you for reading.  And thank you again for your support of our project.

We hope that Bossa will become a valuable part of your collection and that you will enjoy the game for many years to come.

Hiroshi Maeda, Bossa team leader

Bossa on Kickstarter
• Period: Thursday, March 24 – Wednesday, April 13