At the end of 2018 I was really honoured to be commissioned by a new toy company called Bright Stripes to create a whole series of cool and fun crafted toys or them. Not only are they a great client to work with, their products are fun and cool and also focus on STEAM education for young children. STEAM if you haven’t heard about it is a learning curriculum that focus on five specific disciplines of education; Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics. All key things that children need to learn but done so in an interactive way that is really fun to learn with.
As a note I always receive samples of products once they are available for sale so my daughter tried a lot of the toys out and she loved them. We also tried some STEAM products and while some have been challenging (a little about her age range) they really are great.
The first group of photos are the scratch art books I illustrated for them. I love all of the fun and happy briefs they gave me and they really did allow me to have a lot of fun with all of the projects they gave me. As an illustrator, and indeed someone who works in the creative industries, it’s sometimes rare but really amazing when a client gives you freedom and total trust on projects. This will 100% always improve the quality of the final work.
If you don’t want your children spending hours on their phones or tablets (something I fight my daughter over) then these are great toys for them. Children will love scratching away the black layers to find out what’s underneath. Amelia (my daughter) would literally disappear into her bedroom for several hours with her scratch books rather than watch Netflix, Youtube or whatever she would normally try to watch.
These “magic reveal pads” are the second batch of water reveal pads I illustrated for Bright Stripes. These water reveal pads are completely different to other water reveal pads on the market as they teach your children something while they draw on them. For example, there is a book that teaches about the circle of life, while another teaches the alphabet and another numbers. I wish Amelia had these when she was younger so we could have made learning the alphabet and numbers much more fun.
One of the water reveal pads actually shows you how elevators work, how car engines look inside and how an alarm cock works. It was really refreshing for me to illustrate these as it taught me a lot about simple mechanisms, although I will admit the car engine was really hard to illustrate! Hahaha…
Here are some photos of my little assistant demonstating how the water reveal pads work. All of the pads have a really cute design and a good quality water brush pen and all you need to do is fill the chamber of the pen with water and let your child water paint away. It’s non toxic, hassel and mess free. NOTE: Once the pads then dry out the colours will disappear again and you can paint again.
The next two photos show you another cool toy I illustrated called “String Art”. We all know embroidery is a popular form of art and how cool will it be to introduce your young child to embroidery? I loved embroidery when I was around 8-9 years old. The kits include a plastic needle that is completely child safe. Your child can feed the different coloured threads through different holes on the board and they can then create their first embroidery art. I think if you were to frame the pictures after they’ve completed them they could be a really great decoration for their bedroom. What do you think?
The next toy is my favourite! “Fast Food” has the most brilliant name and I had so much fun designing these cute food car and character utensils with my daughter. My daughters loves all the puff stickers (and me too! I never had puff stickers in my life, can you believe that?!). She loves decorating her little characters and cars with stickers and to give them funny hats or faces. I highly recommend these super cute and fun toys for your family! It’s bit of a family effort for us as I’m not very good at making the hot dog car so I asked my husband to help. So this is a fun activity for the whole family as I’m especially “all thumbs and no fingers” when it comes to building!
The final photo is of all the toys that I made in 2019. I have another 2 projects that will be released shortly. One is a scratch art for the holidays and the other a STEAM school activities toy. They both look awesome and fun.
I love working on projects like this because I’ve learnt so much from developing them. There is a lot of thinking because a lot of them have any layers or the final products are 3D, so you have to think about they will look or work with other parts and how you should illustrate them. It’s quite hard and challenging sometimes but I LOVE IT. I love problem solving and thinking and I also learnt how to create die-cut layers how scratch art works and it’s design process, etc.
Bright Stripes are an amazing client to work with. They helped me a lot with understanding how everything works. They gave me a lot of freedom and they didn’t even ask me to put extra things into the illustrations, but of course I always delivered the best work I could. I really look forward to working with them more in the future.
If you want to buy any of those toys, they are available on Bright Stripes website (Click HERE ).
All the toys are available in many stores in USA which you can check the stores name HERE.
If you live in Canada then you can go to Mastermind Toys. They have 65 stores all over Canada.
Stay tuned for more exciting projects from Bright Stripes and me. What’s your thoughts? Do you need anyone to help you with your fun projects? I would love to hear from you.