tiny paper origami sharks

Inspired by the traditional Japanese story that folding 1,000 origami cranes (千羽鶴) will make one’s wish come true, Paper Sharks is a project that aims to raise support and awareness for shark conservation.

Traditionally, the crane has been revered as a legendary creature in Japan – said to live a thousand years and having the power to bestow luck or grant one’s wish. While sharks may not hold the same reputation in the minds of most people, as an animal that has lived on this planet for millions of years, perhaps they deserve far more respect than they have been given.

blacktip reef sharkBy folding origami sharks and creating an online collection of photos submitted by supporters around the world, it is hoped that others will be inspired to do what they can to make a difference. Anyone wanting to show their support for shark conservation may use the patterns I have created to fold their own paper shark and upload a photo of it to the gallery. By creating an online collection of paper sharks, I would like to create a “visual” petition – shark conservation supporters represented not just as a number of signatures, but through a medium that is more personal, meaningful and has more visual impact.

In addition to organizing a collaborative online collection of paper sharks, I will also be sharing my progress as I fold 1,000 paper sharks (千匹鮫) as a personal project. Anyone interested in taking on the 1,000 paper shark challenge along with me is asked to please share their story by posting a comment to this page or by contacting me. I will be happy to add your project to the site!

papersharks brochure and business cardsCurrently PaperSharks.org is a small, newly-launched project, but I would like it see it grow and become something more. If you can contribute any of your skills, input, comments or suggestions, I would love to hear from you!

Thank you for your support,


email ~ larah(at)papersharks.org

My Thousand Paper Sharks Progress

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last updated: March 6, 2016

10 thoughts on “About

  1. Hi Larah,

    Congratulations on starting this meaningful and unique project! Sharks are very special to me too! I spearheaded the shark fin ban campaign in Toronto back in June 2011. We won – but unfortunately the opposition took the City to court and won the appeal, so the Toronto shark fin ban is currently in limbo. I would love to meet other shark conservationists and discuss what we can do to save sharks. Where are you located?


    • Hi Joanna,

      Thank you! I’m located in Oregon in the US, but I would be happy to do what I can to help via email … just let me know! Keep up the good work in Toronto 🙂

      Best regards,

  2. Laura – I love your project, and will fold some paper sharks today, maybe see if I can get my office interested in donating a dollar or two for each shark.

    I have a suggestion: There is a site called “Spoonflower” which prints user-designed patterns (I’m thinking of your ‘shark’ in many languages designs) onto fabric, wallpaper, and wrapping paper. They pay each artist 10% of sales – which you could put back into finning charities. I certainly would love to buy the ‘shark’ design in fabric and wrapping paper myself. Check it out, and let me know if you do it, I’ll buy some shark fabric!

    • Hi Sheila,

      Thanks for the great suggestion! I’ve never heard of the site, but I will definitely check that out …

      Best regards,

  3. I have always enjoyed origami, and having been looking for good instructions – and now as a cause to help sharks! Even better. My husband and I are scuba divers and do what we can on our social pages to raise awareness. We have dived with Ragged Tooth Sharks at Aliwal Shoal in South Africa, and just love them – what wonderful creatures! Thank you for your effort – I will be uploading pics of my shark soon! I would also like to do more in terms of raising awareness. Could I send through a few questions / suggestions? Thank you for this wonderful idea! I hope that your loving care spreads around the globe 🙂 Bianca

    • Thanks so much Bianca! I am definitely open to any questions or suggestions you might have. Feel free to send me an email (larah@papersharks.org) and I’ll see what I can do!
      Thanks again,

  4. What you are doing is terrific! I think all animals need to be respected. Its a shame people have taken it upon themselves to kill and destroy habitats unique to wildlife. Such an awesome way to let young and old crafts and clumsy, to join together and make somewhat easy, definitely cute, way to save our sharks. My son and grandson are their biggest fans! They are both crafts too. I can’t wait to show my grandson this. He’ll have paper sharks all over his room!!

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