Introduction: Make Your Own Art Toy

About: Interactive technologist/industrial designer

This is part of an assignment for a art toy class that I did.

In the beginning we try to understand and define "Art Toys" or "Designer Toys" what is it, and how is it different from a traditional toy.

Then we watched this video by Paul Budnitz, the founder of Kidrobot.

Paul Budnitz talks about juxtaposition, appropriation, complexity, emotion, which are usually elements taken into consideration while designing a art toy.

Paul has a lesson which this video is part of on (not sponsored).

Step 1: Sketch

This project we use a pin up doll as the main body, sort of like using a blank such as Munny, Dunny from Kidrobot. So i started sketching with some simple out line of the doll.

The trick is to spend less time thinking, just draw what ever you feel like it could be, don't spend more than 1 minute on each drawings. Just have fun with it, you can add or cut away stuff, make pattern, whatever you can think of.

the dolls are available on amazon or crafting store.

Step 2: Character Turnarounds

Once you decided on which design to go with, it would be helpful to draw a character turnaround. A character turnaround is a series of drawings that typically shows a finalized character design, which contain drawings (render) of the character from its front, back, left, right, and sometimes three-quarter view.

Because Im just drawing a reference for myself, I've only done the front view.

Step 3: Get Started Carving

Depend on the design, you may use different tools or production method, my design has some cut away, because i don't own a bandsaw, i use a carving knife that i bought in the past.

Step 4: More Carving

i use a Dremel to create the wood bark pattern.

Step 5:

i used a piece of plywood for the axe in my design, using a sanding machine to make the blade, then attach the handle, which is a 1/8 inch dowel.

Remember that this is a display toy, so it doesn't necessary have to have the strength to held itself together if you throw across the room, so when you are adding pieces on super glue is a viable solution

Step 6: Coloring - Spray Paint

I used spray paint for the axe, first spray a layre of primer. then mask for the blade part for some silver, finally spray a very thin layre of silver on everything to make it look metallic.

Step 7: Coloring - Paint Brush

If you want to avoid toxin and don't have a compressor, you can also use good old paint Brush, I used paint brush for the tree bark part of the doll.

It's easier to use brushes when you have a complicated surface or pattern to mask. also, paint brushes are good for weathering to create some depth, which i did in the tree barks.

Step 8: Draw a Face.

this step is pretty straight forward. I looked up some reference before deciding what style to go with.

Step 9: Photograph and Social Media

When you are finished, take some nice photographs of the toy and share on social media.

Social media has a big presence in between art toy designers, a lot of info like events or pop up shops and publicity are through social media, primarily Instagram.

I shared some of my work on instagram as well, feel free to check it out

There is more detail and my other projects on my blog

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