Origami (derived from the Japanese words ‘ori’ meaning folding, and ‘kami’ meaning paper) is the traditional Japanese art of paper folding, which was started in Japan in the 17th century. Since then, it has rapidly evolved into a very popular and dynamic modern art form. Broadly, Origami is the art of transforming a flat sheet of paper into a finished 3 dimensional sculpture by employing only folding techniques. Paper cutting and gluing techniques are typically considered to be outside the domain of Origami – they constitute what is called ‘Kirigami’, another Japanese paper-art form.
The objective of the event was to not only introduce the participants on how to make beautiful Origami designs but even answer the Why. The event began with Robert Lang’s Ted video of ‘The Math and Magic of Origami’ where he explains the progress made by Origami over the years and its folding concepts now being successfully applied even in satellite design (interesting video, do watch it!). Aravind then explained the geometrical basis of the Origami design he was teaching the participants. The design chosen was a heart shaped jewel box and involved some intricate geometry and quite a few difficult folds. In the beginning, everyone present found it to be rather difficult; but as the Finesse team guided them through the process, they began to pick it up and even started enjoying themselves. One could visibly see the initial frowns on people’s faces slowly turn into excited smiles during the course of the workshop.
The kids visiting the workshop were taught a number of intermediate level Origami designs such as a box, a crane and a dinosaur which they could easily follow. They seemed to be having a lot of fun as they sat through the full two hours of the workshop folding paper and even demanding that they be taught something more challenging at the end of it!
For the two hours nearly all participants were lost in the magic of Origami. Needless to say, the event was a huge success, and even elicited very appreciative feedback by the participants, after the session.