Friday, March 21, 2014


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TIred of winter? Giddy at the very thought of spring creeping over your windowsill? Blissed out by the first sounds of birds chirping? Me too. I'm even more excited about celebrating  the arrival of spring with the launch of a new very cute app game, a result of a collaboration with one irrepressible force of nature, Laura Tallardy.

 A professional children's app developer, designer and illustrator, Laura was a pleasure to work with and did all the heavy lifting in getting this project created, tested, and out into the marketplace. I supplied the art for Laura to transform. Lots of photoshopping went into the making of 24 cute and crazy animal scenes. Kids of all ages will be challenged to use their observation skills in finding the differences. It's ideal for kids around 6-8 years.

The app is available for ios, Google, Amazon,Nook, and Nabi platforms and there is a free  ios version available for download here!

It was produced in several languages. Here's a promo for the Finnish version, which makes me smile every time I see the word Kuningaskunta.

A really fun game that also encourages an appreciation of wildlife!

Some more sneak previews of the art:  

 Art was originally created for Ranger Rick Magazine and is reprinted
with the permission of the National Wildlife Federation.
© dpalen 2014

Check out the video preview:

Friday, March 7, 2014

"Good things come to those who hide out."

A recent piece for Ranger Rick magazine (the best magazine ever for kids to learn about animals) about why cats love being in boxes. It's part of their predatory nature.  They have to take their prey by surprise! I thought I would make the box sort of like a real clubhouse to exaggerate this idea. "Welcome, prey!", he's thinking. "You are no match for my cunning ways, and I will pounce on you as soon as you walk by.  So walk already. Why are you just lying there ?  OK, I'll wait for you to cross my threshold. "  

Here's the layout with the illustration in place. Kids get to ask these questions and see their names in print with the answers. How cool is that?

     Later I experimented with a dramatic view. Now we are in our own box looking at him. 
We could all wait forever. Or take a nap.

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