“Brandon, don’t destroy paper. If you’re bored, get reading,” My mom frowned at the pile of shredded paper on the floor.
I wanted to protest, but I knew, like my friends, she would dismiss my new hobby. At first glance, Origami—an ancient Japanese art form of paper folding—seems to hold little or no ink in real life.
To me, Origami is a way of living. When my hands learn the pattern of the box or ornament I’m making, I stop reading the instructions and go through the motions in a kind of a hand dance. With each fold, I learn to accept the creases and watch my paper expand into a bird or collapse into nothing.
Origami has taught me to always adapt to the unique needs of a situation. Although I ultimately dictate what a flat sheet of paper will turn into, I don’t decide how it might react to change. Rather, I try to remain flexible while working on an origami: balancing my ultimate goals with an understanding of the paper’s natural limits.
At times, I make the folds over and over again. Not because I had done them wrongly, but because it is what it takes to get there. This way, I’m able to shape even the finest details of that which can’t be seen. I’m able to stay true and focused to my goal. Eventually, there is a special pleasure in guiding a plane paper transcend into an origami owl.
My fascination with origami—an ancient Japanese art form of paper folding—probably stemmed from growing up on a steady diet of making paper planes. At an early age, I found it intriguing that by changing the steps in the making of a paper plane I could end up with a totally different model. I delved more into my newly-discovered hobby, and the eventual discovery that a square of paper has inside it all the possibilities to be anything I could imagine made origami even more remarkable.
Today, when I begin working on a specimen, it’s impossible to see a finished origami art piece through a random waste paper. With my paper plane as my canvas, and my hand as my guide, it’s only by following the set of mathematical rules governing the art that I am able to achieve stunning transformations.
Origami has taught me to always adapt to the unique needs of a specimen. Although I ultimately dictate what a flat sheet of paper will turn into, I don’t decide how it might react to change. Rather, I try to remain flexible while working on an origami: balancing my ultimate goals with an understanding of the paper’s natural limits. I pride myself in the fact that I am not a perfect origami piece. I love that my life is constantly providing experiences that fold me and make me better.
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