Oodles of Doodles Information

History

In 1999, founder Steffanie Lorig met a little girl named Hallie, who had been diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a rare form of childhood cancer when she was only 12 months old. When they first met, little Hallie had already spent the majority of her life of her young life fighting to stay alive. Up until then, Art with Heart’s main focus centered around helping homeless youth.

Steffanie became consumed with the goal of having Art with Heart help kids like Hallie. One night, after exhaustive research and a number of shut doors, she had a vivid dream about an extraordinary activity book that would bring healing and help to hospitalized children who were dealing with anxiety and fear.

Two and a half years later, the dream became a reality. First published in 2002, Oodles of Doodles became Art with Heart’s first book, dedicated to giving hospitalized children a meaningful way to express their fears and concerns. Hidden behind the colorful imagery are therapeutic benefits that give them back a much-needed sense of control and a safe place to express their fears and worries.

The project is a testament to the power of collaboration: the first two printings of the book boasted the talents of 97 different artists who all contributed free of charge, including Mary Grand Pré of Harry Potter fame. Numerous printers and paper mills offered their products and services at reduced or pro bono rates to create this vibrant activity book. Due to high demand, Art with Heart distributed 20,000 in the first three years, and then reprinted a 48-page version in order to be sensitive to hospital’s postage and storage issues, and to be able to offer a Spanish version.

Endorsed by the Lance Armstrong Foundation, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Starlight Children’s Foundation of Canada as well as The Society for the Arts in Healthcare, Oodles has helped thousands of children find hope in the midst of health crises, turning a difficult time into what it should be…a childhood.

Illustrators

Art with Heart handpicked the following illustrators because of their visual relevance to children. Their work has appeared in children’s books (such as the Harry Potter series), magazines, advertising, and games around the world.