eBoy Pixel Art Jigsaw Puzzles

The clean and sharp art of eBoy graces three of our 1500 piece cityscape jigsaw puzzles by Heye. eBoy, a group consisting of Steffen Sauerteig, Svend Smital and Kai Vermehr, started creating pixel art together in 1998 because of their shared affinity for making art “for the screen.” Pixel art is a special type of digital illustration, meaning that the members of eBoy are working with their art down to the pixel— painstaking effort for maximum detail work. Now their art is used in a different context—often printed, and now richer and more complex than it was 15 years ago.

Rio by Heye. 1500 pieces. 23″ x 32″

“Handling pixels is fun,” they say. “You are forced to simplify and abstract things.”

But even with the simplicity of pixels, eBoy is able to create grand views of popular cities, showing us something familiar in a new way. The choice for cityscapes comes from their love of the “liveliness, density, and variety of an urban environment.”

Los Angeles by Heye. 1500 pieces. 23″ x 32″

If eBoy devotes itself solely to one project, with all 3 members working on it full time, it can take between 6 to 8 weeks to complete with all the detail and work. But eBoy often works on things in their spare time, meaning some projects take months—or even years.

Their work has paid off. They have worked for big name companies such as Coca-Cola, Honda, Nike, and the New York Times.

Paris by Heye. 1500 pieces. 33″ x 23″

eBoy puzzles are fun because you’re never stuck working on one portion of the puzzle for too long. There’s always something new to look at and discover. In a review from pleased customer Jeremy, he said, “Easily the most fun puzzle I’ve encountered. Plenty of variety in the imagery, so the 1500 pieces stay fun the entire time. Felt like mini-puzzles within a giant puzzle. Leaves plenty of room to get the entire family around.”

Perfect Party Puzzles

All puzzles are good to do with a friend, some are just easier! The new puzzles offered by PSI are round-table puzzles, or four-fronts puzzles. That just means when everyone sits around the table, they’re going to have a part of the puzzle that is facing them—not upside down, or at another weird angle—making them perfect for throwing a puzzle party or for having it out on Thanksgiving or during the holiday season! If you’re looking for a good family-based, easygoing activity, this is the perfect idea.

city puzzle, round table puzzle, 4th of july jigsaw

City Central by PSI. 700 pieces. 24″ round.

animal kingdom puzzle, elephants, jungle jigsaw

Animal Arena by PSI. 700 pieces. 24″ round.

american landmarks puzzle, statue of liberty puzzle, big ben, best travel jigsaw

Legendary Landmarks by PSI. 700 pieces. 24″ round.

time travel puzzle, pyramids jigsaw

A Quick Walk Through Time by PSI. 550 pieces. 20″ x 20″.

 

 

 

Your Kids and Development

We recently stumbled across this great article about parents roles in their children’s development: how parents keying in to their progress in school during this crucial time is “a determining factor in [the child's] success as an adult.” They stress the importance of  actively aiding a child’s progress:

“Parents … should also take the time to learn what’s being covered under the lesson plan and what’s up next on the curricular agenda. Make a point of working on those skills at home, too … Remember, education and learning don’t stop the minute your child walks out the door of her preschool or child development center.”

Keep your kids’ brains active with playful learning games and toys with foundational skills. Melissa and Doug offers great supplements for providing educational fun in the home.

Alphabet Truck, Ages 3+

Block play is a great foundational skill for stacking, counting, and sorting.

Fruit Basket Jumbo Knob. Age 2+

Plugging in shapes is great for hand-eye-coordination skills.

Magnetic Pattern Block Kit. Ages 3+

Whether they are building predetermined patterns or exploring with shapes, they will learn about space

Guest Post: Angie Reviews Lots O’ Buttons from Colorluxe line

Today we have a guest post from Angie, who works at our Mid Rivers Puzzle Warehouse location and has the luxury of working around puzzles all day! A big thanks to Angie for giving us a review on her thoughts of the new Colorluxe line.

Lots O’ Buttons by Lafayette Puzzle Factory. 500 pieces. 18 x 24 inches.

Hi everyone! Angie here, from our Mid Rivers Puzzle Warehouse location. I was SO excited to get the new line in from ColorLuxe. They won the 2012 Puzzle of the Year Award from the Creative Toy Awards by Creative Child Magazine and I can already see why! They have beautiful pictures, as well as some very challenging ones that have bold crisp colors.

I decided to put one on the walls here and picked their 500 piece “Lots o’Buttons.”  While we do not have this specific puzzle in stock on our website, the Colorluxe series will all have “unique shaped pieces” that make them surprisingly simple to assemble (I took a piece out for a better example than the one on the box, and it was no where near the craziest one!)

Uniquely shaped pieces!

Uniquely shaped pieces!

And, although I haven’t opened up a Large Piece from them, I can only imagine how big they are! The normal sized pieces are very large, similar in size to White Mountain, while also VERY thick and sturdy.

There was no texture to the piece, and while it has a somewhat glossy finish there were no glare issues for me here under the bright store lights. I had a lot of fun finishing it! I glued it together with SunsOut glue – so the finished picture here has some brush strokes (sorry!).

buttonsbuttons2

If I were doing it again I would probably use Master Pieces glue to eliminate the up-close brush strokes, but from a distance you don’t see them. This new line has everything from 300 Large piece to 1500 EXTRA Large Pieces. Make sure to search for ColorLuxe the next time you are on our site and in the store! And, as always, we would love your feedback too.

 

National Read a Book Day is September 6th!

Tomorrow is National Read a Book Day, so it will be a great day to unplug and unwind in a cozy chair.

There are some overlapping benefits between reading and puzzling. Both improve concentration and memory and lower stress and keep your brain active. Additionally benefits of reading are a more expansive vocabulary and glimpses to other times, places, and cultures.

Need some book recommendations? Goodreads is fantastic for every type of recommendation you may ever need, including books you should read and others you should avoid, with lists such as:

Pick up something new, reread something old, or try out something that’s been sitting on your shelves for ages. Whatever you do, read!

We’ve previously highlighted puzzles with a post on 5 Reasons You Should be Reading Game of Thrones and Book-Related Puzzles. Today here’s all of the Classic Book Puzzles we have, which come in a collectible packaging that looks just like a book on your shelf! It even has a magnetic closing.

Jack and the Beanstalk by Master Pieces. 1000 pieces.

The Queen’s Croquet by Master Pieces. 1000 pieces.

Romeo and Juliet by Master Pieces. 1000 pieces.

Huck Finn by Master Pieces. 1000 pieces.

Wizard of Oz by Master Pieces. 1000 pieces.

Gone with the Wind by Master Pieces. 1000 pieces.