Monday, June 22, 2015

Changing With the Times

In the mid-1990s, ThinkUp was a recognized source in Hasbro Games' search for new opportunities. It was often scheduled into "show times" during sweeps to see toy inventor ideas in NYC. ThinkUp was and remains a creative, Philly-area studio with all the development skills to represent new ideas in illustrations, CAD designs, and looks-like/works-like playable models.

Jerry Cummings, the chief thinker at ThinkUp, knows the 100 to 1 odds against getting a mass-market toy or game idea licensed. As a talented artist, designer and inventor, he takes on the annual speculative challenge of creating toy and game ideas, ever hopeful his next creation will become an industry mega-hit.

ThinkUp has maintained the best of its design talents from pre-digital days and added new skills for today's world: the creation of "pitch" videos.  Video captures product features consumers see and can measure a potential marketing licensee's interest and commitment before model making. Even with 3-D printing, making a fully functional replica of an idea is time consuming--and expensive.

ThinkUp has expanded beyond licensing proprietary toy and game concepts into other consumer product categories as well. And the studio will digitize product concepts for other inventors, create marketers' promo videos, or even take pixel magic into playful animations with unique characters. A ThinkUp venture called My Pixel Kids uses those animation skills in a YouTube series of classic nursery rhymes. Five Little Monkeys

Says, Cummings of ThinkUp's transition and expansion from its early days of b-boards and model making," We work very closely with clients to minimize false starts or late stage rejection of concepts. Speculating exclusively on what might be the next hot toy or game in our studio only to have it rejected in a marketer's selection process just didn't seem to make full use of our creativity. We still love our own proprietary toy or game ideas, but we are not averse to helping another inventor or marketer create a success. We take delight in using our skills in any successful effort and not just limiting ourselves to a ThinkUp idea to get all the glory--and rewards".

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