Friday, July 18, 2008

A New Generation in Crayons

Seriously? Multi-cultural crayons? Is this a marketing ploy or a real chance at integration? I remember colouring with crayons as a kid. Your task is to draw a picture of your family. I find the "flesh" coloured crayon, thinking this doesn't look right. I quickly learned that I would have to seek out the brown crayons. Sadly, however, there was only one shade of brown. Family drawings as a little girl became not the simple activity I'm sure the teachers thought it was. I always finished the drawings, but they were never right and never left me with the intended positive feeling.

So now we have these multi-cultural crayons. All sorts of faces can be represented, supposedly. It's strange and funny and great and interesting all at the same time. The Grand and Toy tag line is: An assortment of skin hues that give children a realistic palette for colouring their world.’s product description is: Draw pictures of friends, relatives, and children from around the world with 8 colors: mahogany, apricot, peach, burnt sienna, sepia, tan, black, and white.

I've found some criticism of the black and white crayons being included in the box. ( According to Crayola, that's for "blending" which makes sense, right? An artist would agree?

I noticed the crayons while ordering supplies for my workplace. It just happens to have a similar product code to some tabbed dividers I needed. Just the sight of them brought up all these thoughts. What I want to know is: does the advent of these crayons mean that race matters less or more? One thing I know is that in my next drawing, I’d like to represent the many faces of my friends and family.

Below are a few places where you can purchase these crayons. They also have pictures and brief product descriptions.

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