An Inside Look at What It Takes to Design a Modern Electronic Toy
Introduction: Before we pick up our RideMakerz C6.R Corvette story, allow me to briefly explain my background and involvement in this project. I worked in the R&D Department of Tyco Toys from 1992 to 1997 when we were bought out by Mattel Toys. From 1997 to 2001 (when I was employed there) our design group was known as Mattel Mt. Laurel. (we were located in mt. Laurel, NJ) During my nine years as a direct employee, plus my previous four years as a freelance designer, I worked in the packaging department, the Boys Toys R&D Group, the Prelininary Concepts & Design Group, and the Matchbox Collectibles Direct group. I worked on Tyco H/O Electric Racing, Tyco Radio Control, Matchbox 1-75 die cast, Matchbox Play Sets, and Matchbox Collectibles. My tasks included decoration and graphics design, toy concepts, project management, and product manager. At one time or another I did everything from initial product concepts to preproduction approvals. Being a lifetime “car guy” I was in “Hog Heaven” working there. It was a college-level experiential education and I got to work with some of the most creative people I have ever known.
The RideMakerz project came along in 2006 through my friends at Scrambled Eggz productions in Medford, New Jersey. I have known Tom Waters and Jim Mendillo for over 25 years and they were well aware of my extensive car and racing background. So when their art director, the amazingly talented, Don Amadio, called my about the RideMakerz project, I was right one it. It was a pleasure doing the semi-cartoon-like styling of about 2/3s of the Ridemakerz body designs, along with a lot of the accessory parts. Unfortunately for me, when wave 2 of the RideMakerz car bodies came along, Scrambled Eggz designer/art director, Don Amadio, had the time to do the C6.R Corvette body himself. And I must say, he did a magnificent job. Shaping the stylized bodies to existing common chassis, with just enough characture styling isn’t as easy as it looks.
As a designer, my “coolness” gauge is based on my fist, initial “look” at a design. After you work on a drawing for a long period of time, it starts to get “stale” in your mind’s eye. But several months later, when Don sent me the photos of the initial sculpts, my initial impression was a definite, “WOW!” I hope that you enjoy this behind the scene look into the world of toy car design. – Scott
How does something like this come together? The answer is, “Not easily.” After Andreini and Clark joined forces, a dream-team had to be built. RIDEMAKERZ worked closely with GM, Ford, and Chrysler on all of the body designs and licensing. The team from Kick Design was brought in as creative directors and created the RIDEMAKERZ logos, the brick & mortar store design, and website. They are also the force behind Corvette Racing’s “Jake” and BadBoyVettes.com. Andreini brought in Scrambled Eggz Productions to create concept sketches for all of the body and accessory designs, control drawings used to make tooling patterns, as well as graphics for the decals and packaging. I was privileged to be a part of this team effort Continue reading “Designing the RideMakerz C6.R Corvette”