Winding Down at Licensing Expo Means Loads of Follow-Up for Talented Creators

11 06 2015


Meet Kat Ford, creator of Corpirate. She learned her craft by painting found and industrial objects and then turned them into her stylized art form.

Brainot Baxter and the Vita-Veggie Kids

VeggieVegetables get a bad rap in Marlon Sullivan’s eyes. A teacher with a social services background, Marlon has weaved his love of action and adventure with his need to teach a lesson to kids in this powerfully visual concept. This action-packed property has 10 villains to one hero to play up the “cool” of eating healthy as a way to blow through obstacles and beat the bad guys. Marlon uses the serious issues kids face around nutrition in real life to make the idea of eating well fun. His first year at Licensing Expo and first time to Las Vegas, Marlon, the artist and creator, says he’s very excited about the connections he is making and interest he’s seen in this comprehensive concept. He has created four seasons worth of episodes where characters evolve from a discovery to mastery stage. You can experience the adventure at Booth U192 and on their website.

Pop Picture

HaiyanArtist Haiyan is enjoying her first Licensing Expo this year.  This prolific artist has amazing seascapes, dogs, animals, and sunsets.  Originally from China, she has sold millions of her prints and is now ready to cast her trademark bright colors and nearly photographic style into licensing. You can see her work at Booth C21 or at Art

Licensing Expo Still Strong on Day Three

11 06 2015

Geeh the BandA one-of-a-kind concept that brings fun, positive music and videos to children, Geeh the Band is the only virtual rock band of cool, colorful, fictional characters with two real songs that have made it to the Billboard charts! Created by Alfonso and Ivonne Soto, Geeh the Band is set to release its third album, EVOLVE, this year. One of Geeh’s special property elements is that companies interested in licensing receive the music to offer as a value-add to customers. Licensing partners receive a special code that unlocks videos and music as part of the product purchase. You can rock out with Geeh the Band at Booth U197.


It’s a killer game of tag. Created as a simple game that spreads worldwide and becomes a fast-paced game of life or death, Shawn’s goal is to remind everyone to remember the fun and excitement of childhood games, like tag. After three years of developing and fine tuning her property, Shawna Mills makes her first appearance at Licensing Expo this year. A creator who literally can do it all, Shawna is the artist, designer, writer and animator for her project. With complete outlines for 24 episodes, right now Shawna is producing the animation for the first episodes that will launch on YouTube later this year. BoomtagThere are up to 100 characters that can play this cutthroat game of tag that spans the globe, but Shawna says she’s really just a giant kid at heart who wants to chase people. You can play some tag at Shawna’s Booth V194 or check out –


Only those that have the potential to be happy can see them. They are Nañaritos, which travel the world in dew drops and spread happiness wherever a dew drop breaks. What makes this property unique is the entire cast of characters in the books and stories are bilingual and told in two languages. A rich palette of blues, golds and reds, the Nañaritos brand has been exhibiting at Licensing Expo for four years.NanaritosThe entire look and feel of the concept is based on hand painted canvas characters, where the actual texture of the canvas is part of the visual look. Designer Marion Carro has 64 characters that she has been creating over 23 years, and each character represents a member of her family. Writer Yasmin Rodrigues has written one book with Marion, and they are searching for an agent, as well as meeting with manufacturers for products. You can see samples of potential products for this colorful brand at Booth V185.

New and Old Connections Ignited on Day 2 of Licensing Expo

10 06 2015

Jim Davis cropped setLicensing celebrity sighting alert at the Art + Design Resource Center Booth (C13)! Jim Davis, iconic cartoonist, best known as the creator of the comic strip Garfield, stopped by the booth to catch up with me.  He is excited to be celebrating Garfield’s 37th Anniversary on June 19th, 2015, as well as exploring all kinds of new digital and international deals. Don’t tell anyone, but he brought a plush cat with him–AND IT WASN’T GARFIELD. Jim was so nice, but the cat was grumpy.

supapopyesSean Danconia is an old soul. He loves everything retro, and really not much of anything after 1979. A 15-year career in design, animation, film, and recently fine art, Sean has taken his love of all things classic to create a universe sealed back in time — SupaPop.  The SupaPop story universe unfolds as a Time-Capsule-Toy city, created and sealed in the 60s in San Francisco. The time capsule is “popped” open in 2016, where a classic version of the city remains unevolved. A city where heroic idealism and a classic positive attitude is rampant, the comic book inspired universe encompasses more than 20 different themes packed with licensing opportunities. You can visit the SupaPop world at Booth V200, or better yet, join him at the Joseph Watson gallery tonight, June 10, at 7:30 pm for the world premiere reception.


kokonuzzBased out of Hong Kong, Kokonuzz is just one of four brands created by Spanish graphic designer, Alexis Bautista. With magnets, headwear, clothing, baby and digital sticker licenses in place from connections made at the Hong Kong Licensing Show, Kokonuzz is attending its first U.S. Licensing Expo to take its brand global. Kokonuzz is comprised of seven characters from different parts of the world who want to be YouTube celebrities. Their YouTube channel and other content follows their struggles towards a goal for stardom. Developed as a true mobile brand with licensing as the focus from the start, Kokonuzz characters live their own reality series, even posting comic strip commentaries to real world problems. Visit Kokonuzz at Booth V198.

Properties Getting Ready to Deal on the Second Day of the Licensing Show

10 06 2015

LeeWhat do you get when you cross a biologist and a camera? You get an incredible new art form created all from the glass of a microscope. Biologist turned photographer, Lee Hendrickson, has discovered a new world of photography by growing different crystals (think coffee and wine!) under a microscope and then shining light through the glass and photographing the result. Hendrickson, a career research scientist, author and inventor, uses this process to grow intricate crystal patterns creating a kaleidoscope of multi-dimensional designs. His unique talents caught the eye of Rinekwall, a renowned California-based design company, which teamed with Hendrickson to create a new line of home décor products. 

Jay’s Daughter

Lil BitOne of the few new properties that represent characters of color at Licensing Expo, creator Janeen Uzzell says visitors to her booth are calling the look of The Adventures of Lil’ Bit and Friends “bold.” A series of stories about a 7-year old girl named Lil’ Bit, who goes on wild adventures when she daydreams–while she’s supposed to be doing her homework–Janeen has 10 complete stories already developed. Created from a place of grief when her father died in 2009, Janeen’s stories celebrate her relationship with her Dad, his stories and Janeen’s real world life adventure as an engineer who has lived in Asia, Africa and India. Her goal is for girls and boys to find their own bravery, adventure and openness to new, diverse friends through Lil’ Bit’s love of travel. Not only her first year at Licensing Expo, this is Janeen’s first ever public presentation of her new property. You can visit Lil’ Bit and her friends at Booth D17.

Magic of PoofThe Magic Poof

Another special property with a strong and independent character of color at center stage, The Magic Poof is a book series and animated series in development about a girl with giant, magic hair. Magic hair that is also her best friend. With the first book in the series launched in 2013 and the second last year, creator Stephen Hodges expects an animated short to be completed by fall of this year. His first year at Licensing Expo, you can experience the power of the poof at Booth F15.

Lots of Buzz Building at the Licensing Expo

9 06 2015

It’s been a busy first day of Licensing Expo. As the first day winds down, the buzz continues to build for both new and iconic properties that are exhibiting here today. Exhibitors seem very enthusiastic about the type of leads they are getting.

We interviewed El Tiburon Grande of Mind Yard who has created a property called Your Faith Looks Familiar. Check out these super heroes that promote diversity and multiculturalism. 

Joan Marie Art that Celebrates

An JoanMarieartist for 45 years and a highly licensed brand in the past, Joan Marie Art that Celebrates is making a whole new splash in licensing at the Expo this year. A new licensing agreement with Air Waves for T-shirts and renewed interest in her explosive splashes of color helped Joan decide to attend her first Licensing Expo. Joan’s style is always bright, colorful and happy. Just like Joan. As she says, “Life is a party, and I celebrate it every day through my art.”  You can get happy at Booth F22.

DINAHDinah booth

After years of talking about it, Dinah Brothers made the leap of faith to follow her dreams of becoming an artist just three years ago. Her first time at the Licensing Expo, her property of the same name, Dinah, is getting favorable reviews. Dinah is a western lifestyle brand that captures the love of cowboy life in bright, bold color. The people who live a western lifestyle incorporate it into every facet of their lives, and Dinah is excited to share her brand with those loyal to western life.  She sees her art almost anywhere, but especially home decor and soft paper goods. Visit Dinah in Booth F21.

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