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How to Learn the Origami Art

Updated on December 30, 2008

The origami craft is one of the oldest and most exciting crafts. It comes from China and has been created more thousand years ago. One of the greatest characteristics of origami art is its simplicity and the elegance of the shapes that have been created.

And, on top of that, building origami models is maybe the most affordable modeling hobby - all you need is a sheet of paper. You can even use recycled paper or printed documents. Origami si really unpretentious craft and that's one of the reasons you really must learn it. 

The Best Way To Start

Learning the origami art is not hard. You can do it by reading online tutorials, by experimenting or by examining existing origami models. But probably the best way to start is by buying an origami book with practical cut out sheets for folding. Such books contain real size lined models and all you need to do is to follow the instructions and fold on the lines.

The big advantage of these book is that they are usually colored on the one side so it's much easier to understand the drawings. They are very appropriate for beginners. 

Next Step - Get A Book Without Lined Pages

It's easy to make origami models when everything is made for you, but the real fun starts whne you buy a book with, let's say hundred of more complex models that can't be directly cut from the book pages. Instead of that, you have to look at the instructions and try to follow with your own sheets of paper.

If you have started with the first kind of beginner books, you will already have the basic skills and will be able to work with the more complex books. They are not only cheaper and containing more models, but since you use your paper, you can make one model as many times as you wish. 


Don't forget that the best way to learn somehting is by practicing. Even if you don't buy books, you can practice by making origami models seen online. The most important thing is to actually make and not only watch and read.

Whether you are using a beginner's book or more complex one, or looking at origami instructions online, make sure to start with the simple models first. Get comfortable building easy things and then you will be ready for the more complex ones.

Find videos online (for example on YouTube) and follow the viusual tutorial - that's a great way to progress quickly. Watch and follow - if needed, revert the video to the beginning or repeat the parts that you don't understand well. 

Origami Subjects Appropriate For Learning

Frequently the origami craft deals with animals, flowers, birds, houses and other buldings. Maybe the best start-up point are the animals and birds, because there are thousand models. Here is for example one great 3D tutorial for building an origami bird.

One great subject for learning is also building origami aircraft. There are many places where you can learn how to make paper airplanes - for example on this site about model airplanes.


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