Origami - The Paper Folding Art Origami - The Paper Folding Art – RESHA

Origami - The Paper Folding Art

Author - Divyashree Thacker

Origami Artwork

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Origami, the art of folding objects out of paper to create both two- dimensional and three-dimensional subjects.

The Japanese word origami is a compound of ori (to fold) and kami (paper) has become the widely used description of this art form, although some European historians feel it places undue weight on the Japanese origins of an art that may well have developed independently around the world. Although origami has been a part of Japanese culture for more than a thousand years, it began in China, the birthplace of paper.

Paper making was developed in China two thousand years ago but the Chinese did not readily share this knowledge. Origami has been transforming ever since Buddhist monks carried paper from China to Japan in the 6th century since paper was expensive and not widely available.

While cutting was not traditionally a part of origami, most modern practitioners often called “folders”, abstain from cutting.

Origami Art

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Origami did not initially allow any cutting or gluing, but standards have loosened considerably over the years. Today, you will see many origami books with models that involve some form of cutting or gluing to provide increased stability to the final design. This is another art form, similar to origami known as Kirigami.

Another way in which origami has evolved is that figures are no longer folded exclusively with origami paper. You can work with wrapping paper, typing paper, scrapbook paper, and various forms of handmade paper. There is a "green" crafting trend that involves making origami out of paper that would otherwise be discarded.

Making models from paper can require very few resources and take mere minutes (or even seconds) to execute. Complex designs, on the other hand, can take hours to complete.

Some folders prefer almost cartoon like renderings of their subjects, utilising simple folding sequences, while others strive for highly accurate representations, requiring advanced techniques.

The use of diagramming signs, symbols, and arrows allows for the folding sequences to be accurately described and thereby duplicated, meaning this art form can be learned independent of language.

Origami Paper Art

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Designing origami requires vision. An individual must be capable of visualising what the outcome ought to look like before making a single fold. 

This definitely requires plenty of thought, concentration and problem solving. It allows the individual to devise their own plan and create a plan of their own to achieve the final outcome. Origami expresses individuality when an artist chooses to use different papers and colours. Although a project might be similar in style to another, it can be made unique by using alternate techniques for example, by using wet folds instead of dry folds. Wet folding permits the artist to sculpt the origami project to satisfy their personal objectives. To make a composition more interesting an artist might choose patterned paper or foil-backed paper.

Long before the 3D printer, origami was the original genius at creating lifelike forms out of a flat surface.

Origami  Paper Art

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Folding brings with it the ability to collapse, flex and unfurl structures at will, which has huge potential for a variety of engineering applications. From digestible origami pills that could provide alternatives to invasive surgery to solar panels that could be tightly packed in an aircraft and deploy after launch, at the heart of origami’s modern applications is its ability to transform.

There's more origami stuff in this world than one can imagine! Origami can be found in business advertisements, clothing, furniture, and books. It's not just paper cranes and planes anymore.

Origami structures would be useful in many engineering and everyday applications, such as a robotic arm that could reach out and scrunch up, a construction crane that could fold to pick up or deliver a load, or pop-up furniture.

There are times when the line between textiles and paper blur, at least in function, but it’s difficult to know how to classify this discovery. Nowadays, fashion designers use this technique into their creations. Using origami, compact deformable three-dimensional structures can be created from two-dimensional sheets through high degrees of folding along predefined creases.


Fabric origami offers crafters an opportunity to make artistic objects out of fabric. People can choose from a variety of fabrics for origami projects.

Fabric folding designs include animals and objects as well as quilting and clothing designs. However, fabric can be treated in a way so that it can be folded into some of the same designs as paper origami. Cloth napkins are commonly folded into artistic designs as part of a place setting presentation in restaurants.

Folded fabric has become a popular design element in modern quilt making. Quilt crafters usually sew a folded fabric block directly into a quilt or add a design to a quilt as an appliqué. Fabric origami can also be incorporated into clothing. Known as orinuno, folded fabric art objects are sewn onto clothing as a part of the outfit design. Typical designs include flowers, stars and animals.

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