Like everyone else, I was saddened to hear of Maurice Sendak’s passing today. Sendak was an amazing person who did amazing work. In my mind, Where the Wild Things Are was one of the first books to recognize the worlds of creativity inside the minds’ of children.
It has been many years since I’ve read it, but I suspect that I’ve carried Sendak’s principles and spirit with me all along. When I started MAQET, I initially thought of it as a platform for enabling the creativity of young artists. Thinking outside the box (as children often do), a hedgehog, a bear and a viking become Japanese Schoolgirls. While those particular customizations were done by Shin Tanaka, a professional artist, yesterday, we showed you a great abstract bear by 5-year old Camille.
MAQET has always been about celebrating creativity. We try hard to break down the barriers of production so that personalized collectible art objects are within the reach of anyone with an imagination and an Internet connection. We will miss Maurice Sendak’s countless contributions to art and literature. We know wherever he is, he is among fans and friends.
We’ve always maintained that MAQETs are egalitarian art objects. When we were 15, we hated 21+ concerts. And now that we’re grown up, we find it terribly unfair that we can’t ride the kiddie rides at the carnival. (How awesome are these cars???) So we made MAQET with everyone in mind: From Scott Tolleson, a professional designers working for Disney (Check out his Bernie Cotton MAQETs) to Camille, a 5-year old girl who already possesses a keen sense of color theory.
With some assistance from her (proud) papa, Lee, Camille chose Nao’s Dankeschoen Create Your Own Character template, and immediately went to work with magic markers on a paper printout. Lee and Camille enjoyed the ability to view the bear in 3D before ordering the collectible. Once satisfied, the bear was given a name (Rainbow), and dispatched to the worker elves at MAQET HQ.
Please take a look at Lee’s post about MAQET on Howdy Kids: The Magazine for Parents of Exceptional Children. Here’s his verdict!
For special occasions or gifts, it’s really exciting to see your child’s artwork translated into 3 dimensions. We’re already brainstorming what our next creation will look like. If you’re not the artistic type, you can also go rogue and cover your figurine in photographs of a family vacation or quotes from your favorite book. Anything you can illustrate by hand or compose in a computer graphics application can be placed on a toy. For the cool factor alone, MAQET’s offerings are totally worth the price.
Thanks for sharing your MAQET, Camille! We encourage parents to check out the Howdy Kids website for all its great content AND our special discount code for free shipping on your next MAQET.
MAQET is incredibly proud to announce that three designs from our very own talented roster of MAQET-makers were chosen among the Top 40 customized cars in The VW Polo Principle contest! VW received over 1400 entries by all levels of artists from all over the world. Each individual designed his/her personal vision of a Polo automobile using our original character designer software.
Boston-based Howie Green and Tokyo super-couple, Shin + Nao are advancing to the finals with their colorful cars. Along with 37 other lucky car customizers, their designs are in the process of being 3D-printed as incredible 10-inch Polo prototypes. All 40 cars will be exhibited at the Danish Design Center in Copenhagen on May 25th. During the opening event, Polo will announce which winner will receive a real car with his/her design to drive for two months over the summer.
What an incredible opportunity. It’s time to make sure those driver’s licenses are up to date! Howie, Shin and Nao, we’re rooting for you!
Volkswagen’s Polo Principle design contest is in full swing, and we’re stoked to see so many interesting custom cars made with our character design software. If you haven’t tried it out yet, you’ll be surprised how fun and easy it is!
Volkswagen Polo and Nao Shimojo!
Speaking of surprises, look who we found test-driving a VW Polo! It’s Nao, who, in conjunction with Shin, designed the great Dankeschoen custom skin below. If you can read Japanese, check out Nao’s blog post about it here.
MAQET isn’t on the jury for picking the contest winners, so we’re at liberty to call out a few of our favorites so far
Volkswagen and MAQET have partnered for a contest that puts you in the driver’s seat! Using MAQET‘s character designer at The Polo Principle website, you can put your own spin on the new VW Polo. VW will select one winner to have his/her design applied to a real Polo automobile! The winner will then get to drive that Polo for 2 months during the summer. VW’s panel of judges will also select the 40 most creative prototype designs to be 3D-printed and exhibited in Copenhagen this May. After the show, the 40 winning 10-inch custom physical prototypes will be handed back over to their respective creators. This is a real opportunity for car customizers to show their skills in front of a world audience!
The VW Polo contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. Scandinavian names are currently dominating the entries, so get going, gang! Customize your own VW Polo and check out an exciting use of MAQET’s unique software here. MAQET is proud to have partnered on this exciting contest with Volkswagen, a another company that values artistic innovation.
Each month, Pixar chooses an artist to spotlight on the official Pixar Times blog. This month, it’s our own Yosiell Lorenzo! Yosiell’s original Sicklings characters seem to have Monsters Inc’s Mike Wazowski in a bit of a pickle… Click here to read the full interview. Congrats Yosi!
Many of you figured it out from our Facebook teaser, but the cat is now officially out of the bag. We’re working with the talented Rob Reger to bring you Emily the Strange MAQETs! That’s right: it’s the same Emily you love, but now as new collectible, customizable PlastinTM figurines! This will be a truly unique opportunity to co-create and collaborate with Rob on your very own personal Emily. An official press release is forthcoming, but we’re so excited, we couldn’t help but shout it out! Happy Valentine’s Day indeed
Our friend Dirty Donny is opening Vantastic Voyage, a solo show of 1970s science fiction-inspired paintings on February 25th at Copro Gallery in Santa Monica. Wish we could be there! The new work will also feature 10 hand-painted metal flake 20-sided gaming dice. More on those in the future…but for now, we continue with February’s “I Heart ___” theme with this Dirty Donny Dankeschoen, wearing a real metal flake helmet painted by Dirty Donny!
Sergey Safonov customized this Dankeschoen bear by Shin + Nao with one of his original Valentine’s tattoo designs.
You can do the same thing with our new festive stamps. We are guaranteeing all MAQETs made and ordered by tomorrow, Thursday afternoon (with domestic overnight shipping) will be received by Valentine’s Day. Create your own now!