ARTWALKS is dedicated to creating a platform based on adorable printed footwear to support and promote a variety of deserving children’s books and illustrators. This Kickstarter campaign is the beginning of our journey to develop a line of children’s footwear that will inspire a love for art and reading in kids one pair at a time.
Ben Zhu is an illustrator turned full time manager at an art gallery called Nucleus. Nucleus was established in 2004 and has since been devoted to bringing more awareness and appreciation to illustration, animation, and entertainment art. (www.gallerynucleus.com) Having featured several children’s books in the shop and children’s book illustrators in the gallery, the idea of a kids shoe based on children’s books began to form. There are so many beautifully illustrated books and artists that deserved to be represented in this medium. The shoes could not only give artists a new platform to license their art but it would give toddlers an early start on the joys of reading and art. Surprised that there is no shoe brand devoted solely to the promotion of children’s books, the idea for ARTWALKS began.
After an initial test launch at a local book fair and selling out of the few sample shoes made, Ben found that many parents and non-parents alike responded positively to the shoe & book combination. There seemed to be an opportunity to build the footwear line into something more. Seeking professionals in the footwear industry, Ben asked Asako Iwase to join the team. As a footwear designer for Children’s and Women’s for over ten years, Asako worked to improve the design and development of the shoes. Together they formed ARTWALKS in hopes to create a platform and become an advocate for children’s book authors and illustrators and encourage reading and art, all through the medium of kids shoes.
See more on our website: www.whereartwalks.com
Follow us on instagram: https://www.instagram.com/whereartwalks/
Our initial launch offers High-Tops and T-Straps. Soft soled infant and toddler shoes made from soft materials with prints featuring adorable designs based on notable contemporary children’s books. Easy to open / close Velcro straps, and grip bumps added for extra traction. Fun shoe interior prints to help the little ones get an early start on learning right foot and left foot.
STYLE: LONDON (High Tops)
STYLE: JAMIE (T-Straps)
Each and every child’s foot size is different and to find the right size for them, plant both feet firmly on the ground and measure from heel to longest toe. The best time to measure their feet is later in the day, as they will swell over the course of the day. The shoe should be at least 1/2” longer than total length for wiggle room for their toes, giving them just the right amount of space to grow into comfortably.
SCOTT C. creates paintings, illustrations, comics, kid's books and video games. He worked at Double Fine productions as Art Director on such games as the critically acclaimed Psychonauts and Brutal Legend. Alongside this career in games, he has published numerous comics and created paintings that have appeared in galleries and publications around the world. Scott lives in Los Angeles. View his work at ScottC.com
JOEY CHOU was born in Taiwan and moved to California in his early teen. There he received his BFA from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Joey has worked as an illustrator for feature animated films and has illustrated several picture books. View his work HERE.
JON KLASSEN CM is a Canadian writer and illustrator of children's books and an animator. He won both the American Caldecott Medal and the British Kate Greenaway Medal for children's book illustration, recognizing the 2012 picture book This is Not My Hat, which he also wrote. View his work HERE.
Through our rewards you can gift the joy of art and reading. No need for baby shoes? You can still help by pledging to our other great rewards or simply donating. Your pledge is much appreciated.
PIN PALS ($15 + Pledge)
1 enamel pin (chose from 3 designs)
ONLY A BOOK ($15 + Pledge)
1 book signed by the illustrator (chose from 6 books)
BLANK CANVAS ($30+ Pledge)
1 blank canvas shoe (choose from 2 styles) *markers not included
YOU'RE A KIND SOLE ($35+ Pledge)
1 shoe (choose from 6 designs, 4 sizes per shoe)
NEW READERS ($45+ Pledge)
1 shoe (choose from 6 designs) + 1 corresponding book
BABY SHOWER SET ($55+ Pledge)
1 shoe (choose from 6 designs) + 1 corresponding signed book + 1 enamel pin (choose from 3 designs)
FIRST STEPS ($65+ Pledge)
2 shoes (choose from 6 designs)
BOOK LOVER ($85+ Pledge)
2 shoes (choose from 6 designs) + 2 corresponding signed books
SHOE LOVER ($90+ Pledge)
3 shoes (choose from 6 designs)
BOOK LOVING FASHIONISTA ($120+ Pledge)
3 shoes (choose from 6 designs) + 3 corresponding signed books
BLANKET BUDDY ($125+ Pledge)
1 I Want My Hat Back woven blanket (100% cotton, made in USA 52 x 70 in / 132 x 178 cm)
ULTIMATE BABY SHOWER SET ($180+ Pledge)
1 shoe (choose from 6 designs) + 1 corresponding signed book + 1 enamel pin (chose from 3 designs) + 1 I Want My Hat Back woven Blanket
HUGS ALL AROUND ($800+ Pledge)
1 Hug Machine shoe + 1 corresponding signed book + 1 enamel pin by Scott + 1 framed original by Scott C. (choose 1 of 7 below)
ART & SOLE: Joey Chou ($1500+ Pledge)
1 shoe (choose from 6 designs) + 1 corresponding signed book + 1 enamel pin by Joey + 1 original framed art piece by Joey Chou (choose 1 of 2 below)
ART & SOLE: Jon Klassen ($1500+ Pledge)
1 shoe (choose from 6 designs) + 1 a corresponding signed book + 1 enamel pin by Jon Klassen + 1 original framed art piece by Jon Klassen (illustration from the book PAX)
Once the campaign is funded we will be sending out surveys in order to process the shoe design options and rewards you would like to receive. We are committed to ensuring that everyone will receive their rewards on time and putting in our due diligence to make sure that there are no delays.
We have already been working for months with a reputable factory that produces shoes for other established brands. They have created an initial run of shoes for ARTWALKS and are prepared to go into full production as soon as we are funded.
Rewards will be fulfilled by Gallery Nucleus LA. Aside from shipping products sold daily from their website, they have helped fulfill three other successfully funded Kickstarter campaigns.
Production, fulfillment and distribution are all already set in place. Once our campaign is funded we will simply begin production. Thanks for your time and we hope to have your support.
- Support and organize walk-a-thons to benefit art and reading programs.
- Donate to local arts programs and charities.
- Create a sustainable line of shoes that have a smaller impact on the environment.
- Build a complete line of footwear featuring many more great children’s books.
"The future belongs to young people with an education and the imagination to create."
Risks and challenges
There are few risks to this project, we have been working with the the shoe vendor for months on quality control and all other rewards are easily produced or attained. The only thing that would prevent the backers receiving their rewards is if we do not get responses from them promptly of their reward choices.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (35 days)