There’s been a lot of talk against mobile devices having taken over children’s play — the lack of time spent with the “physical” world for the digital. Add to that the commandeering of coloring books by adults and so isn’t it time kids fought back? So their advocate Flycatcher has created the Paper to Digital Coloring Books in order to combine the best of real-world play with digital. And to ensure that the kids have fun, parents can get into the act too.
There are 4 themed coloring books: Barbie, Batman, Super Friends (featuring Supergirl, Wonder Woman and Batgirl) and My Little Pony. Each book features 32 pages to color, and so a set of 6 crayons is included for doing just that. When a page has been colored to the child’s content, it’s time to bring the digital into play. On a smartphone or tablet (iOS/Android), a free app is then used to digitize the colored-in page. Now the child can alter/change the picture and re-color it to her heart’s content. That’s because the picture is now malleable, due to it no longer being in the “real” world. For doing this, a stylus (shaped like a crayon of course) is provided — one that is easy for the child to grasp and use, while designed to be put against touch screens without causing any issues.
But there’s no reason not to be able to do a bit more since the coloring book is now in the digital realm. So the coloring book adds the ability to scan in the child’s face (taking her picture through the app) and makes a a selfie so that she can be in the picture with My Little Pony, or join Batgirl as she swoops over Gotham City. Or to turn any photo into a coloring page. And of course that includes Batman too.
All of the coloring books retail for $7.99 and come in blister packs that require parental help at opening (and some effort too). But once the coloring book and accessories have been laid out, it’s time to let the child go at it. Ages 3 and up are recommended, although those parents who have secreted their own coloring books in a drawer might get a bit too involved in “helping” their child do the coloring, both in the real world as well as digital. Therefore parental restraint is recommended.