Alex) Where did it start?
Beau: “A Ton of Fun” started off as a traditional illustrated children’s book about a year ago. When I saw Adventure Work’s Trip Harrison app a big light bulb turned on in my head. Adventure Works can bring books to life while still giving a true reading experience! And that is what they did indeed!
Adventure Works: For us this was a great opportunity to work on a project that embodies the spirit of adventure and was just a perfect fit for our brand. Charmlee is such a great character that we just wanted to be a part of helping him come alive through a digital interactive medium.
Can you describe the app for us?
Beau: Charmlee Buttonwillow is a delightfully likable character who leads the reader through a counting adventure. Music from a Ukulele brings the right mood as it accompanies sliding illustrations and text. The reader has the option of having Charmlee read along with them in his youthfully energetic voice.
Tell us about the build process and work flow for the app.
Beau: Hollye Chapman redesigned the books layout for the iPad resolution in Photoshop. Then it was a matter of communicating with Adventure Works on proper layer structures and file formats to get the desired look. Photoshop became the intermediary tool for us to build this app, which is great because I am comfortable with Photoshop and have zero programming experience.
Adventure Works: Having had prior experience with Kiwk really helped us move even faster this time around and set up a very smooth workflow with Photoshop. In particular, we utilized several of the new features in Kwik to speed development including creating looping and custom path animations very easily. We were able to make a full pass on the basic functionality very early and make development builds to get feedback and iterate before going in and adding our custom code. We couldn’t be happier with the speed and improvements we’ve seen in Kwik over time.
What motivated you to make this app?
Beau: Children reading is as important now as it always has, except today’s books have to compete with a caboodle of mindless entertainment. The Charmlee Buttonwillow series keeps children entertained while still bringing them an old fashioned reading experience.
Adventure Works: We love the idea of interactive books and contributing to the development of children’s imagination. We think this book will appeal to parents who want their kids to be both entertained and motivated to read while actively engaged.
Beau: I’m looking forward to jumping into the next installment of “The Adventures of Charmlee Buttonwillow” now that I know what Adventure Works can do. Expect “Pet Steeve” to have a lot more reader interaction and clever story telling tricks.
Adventure Works: We’ve already started development on “Pet Steeve” using Kiwk and are really excited about all the cool things we’ll be able to do. Keep an eye out for the next release!