Nuts n Bolts Design

Design tool

Nuts n Bolts Design have created the Splat, a powerfully simple 3D drawing tool. Made to support the design process, it is perfect for any age. The tool fuses together geometry and creativity to boost spatial reasoning. The Splat combines isometric elements for rapid visualisation and product design. Great for STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and maths) projects. This tool will have everyone creating cool, innovative designs within minutes. 

Founder and Creative Director Kylie Burrett, is a teacher and information specialist, passionate about helping students achieve their creative potential. Professionally, Kylie has worked as a consultant for: ABC TV, WETA Workshop NZ and Chapman Entertainment UK, and for the past 5 years has been combining this industry experience with her role as a media specialist in NSW schools.

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Images: Nuts n Bolts Design, Splat Tool, 2019. Photo: Australian Design Centre; Kids drawing with the Splat tool. Photo courtesy of Nuts n Bolts Design


What is your 'origin story'?! Where did it all start?
After working with some amazing artists and film makers around the world, I returned to teaching to help students develop their creative potential.

Tell us more about the Splat tool and how you came up with the concept? 
I was researching visual spatial abilities and felt there should be a more creative way to help students develop these skills. It took about 6 months of problem solving to come up with the final design. 12 months from idea to launch. Trying to develop 1 tool that could create all the necessary shapes was like solving a brain teaser.

How does the tool help with design thinking and drawing? 
Design Thinking requires solutions to be visualised. When creating physical products all objects are based on four basic 3D shapes - cube, sphere, cylinder and cone. Breaking down complex forms to these simple 3D shapes helps us to draw. The Splat makes all four of these basic shapes and help kids visualise their ideas for authentic design solutions. 

Tell us about who uses this product and what kind of things they are drawing with it? 
Anything! That’s what is so great about the tool. This review sums it up:  " Think of it as the Swiss Army knife of drawing tools, putting together all the necessary items to create 3D designs and artworks. It's cheap, portable and you can view a heap of free tutorials..." Total Girl Magazine 2018

Any favourite memories associated with designs you have seen made with the Splat tool, or how people have responded to it? 
When kids see the tool being used for the first time they respond like it’s a magic trick. Their sounds of wonder give me goosebumps! But when they start visualising their ideas I love the stories behind their designs the most, they are all so unique. 

What part of the making process do you enjoy the most?
I love it all! But mostly getting lost in my imagination and generating ideas. 

What's next on the horizon for you?
Inspiring students to develop their visualisation skills and creating more resources to help other teachers.