One of my kids’ favorite things to do with the iPad is draw. Actually, one of their favorite things to do anywhere is draw. So I am always looking for fun coloring apps that can keep the artistry flowing, and that I find easier to justify than video games. And now, Crayola (of course) has seriously upped the ante on iPad drawing apps, in an excellent partnership with Griffin.
The Crayola ColorStudio HD turns the iPad into a 3-D, animated art studio, which is such a fun idea for travel, or when pulling out a palate of markers might not be the best course of action.
You’ll need to buy the iMarker digital stylus for about 30 bucks, then download the free ColorStudio app. (Beret is optional.) Right away, your kid can start coloring any of the dozens of animated coloring pages — seriously, they move — in themes like monsters, sea creatures, and jungle animals. They can even drag and drop clip art to create their own, and of course there are blank pages, which happen to be my favorites.
The stylus lets you change between paints, markers, colored pencils and crayons, then adjust for color and brushstroke width, and go to town. And of course there’s easy sharing functionality built in, because if your kids are like mine, then every single thing they’ve ever made must go immediately to the grandparents.
I will say not all the icons are totally intuitive — it does take a little trial and error to figure out some of the navigation. And I know that when I first saw a demo of it, there was a way to turn off the option that keeps you from drawing outside the lines, but I can’t seem to find it. (I think it’s good for kids to draw outside the lines!) I also find just a few really minor bugs, but nothing that kept my kids from playing with it for a good long time. In fact, while there are some negative reviews on iTunes about the stylus responsiveness, my girls, who are four and six, haven’t had an issue at all. Our biggest problem really, is them fighting about who gets to use it next. –Liz