Gillian Lowry, an Orillia mother of two, has created a business that revolves around developing large colouring posters for children.
The 40-year-old Elora native was working as an artist and a registered veterinary technician before being forced out of work by the pandemic. Lowry took a leave of absence from her two part-time jobs in order to home-school her children.
“I started drawing animals and adding in some facts for my kids while they were being homeschooled. It was my way of keeping them busy and giving myself some free time without feeling guilty about it,” Lowry explained.
“I had my drawings printed really big and my kids were really into it, so it kind of snowballed from there.”
Lowry decided to try and make her large drawing creations into a business/ She began printing the colouring posters on paper that measures two by five feet. She then put it out to the world on the internet early last month where it has been well received.
“I was hopeful that it would go well, and it’s going better than I expected,” she said.
“I think a lot of parents are looking for something new, fun, educational, and very novel, and these posters are all of those things.”
Lowry says the new business, called LittleTigers, is an opportunity for the former artist to get creative again.
“It’s been the perfect outlet for me, it’s allowed me to be creative, but it also serves my kids as well,” she said.
Lowry is hopeful that her new product can assist other families the same way it’s helped her family during the pandemic.
“I really like being able to bring something to parents who feel they need it, and the kids benefit from it, too," she explained.
The colouring posters that Lowry has created are far different than the ones that can be found online or in a big box store, she says.
“With my artistic background I feel like I’m more attentive to detail than a lot of colouring stuff that I’ve come across,” she said.
“My kids always want me to print them off things to colour and I could never find anything of the quality that I wanted. It was always too gendered or too silly, or not educational, so I’ve really taken that into consideration with my posters.”
As an environmentalist, Lowry says it was important for her colouring posters to encourage the study of nature while keeping it fun and interesting for children.
The colouring posters are available for curb-side pick up out of Creative Nomad Studios in downtown Orillia. More information can be found here and on Facebook and Instagram @littletigers.ca