Tom Karen, the British designer who counted the Raleigh Chopper bicycle and the Bond Bug three-wheeled car among his career highlights, died on New Year's Eve reports The Guardian.
Go behind the projects on his website, where you'll find sketches, prototypes and snapshots from a creative life fully lived: tomkarendesigner.co.uk, charmingly organized by epoch:
The Scimitar GTE – from Karen's website: Reliant Times
The toy for Kiddicraft - from Karen's website: Marble Run Times
Pic by BulldozerD11 - Chopper
The Raleigh Chopper – Look at the renderings! - from Karen's website: Chopper Times
Pic by Mick from England - Bond Bug 3 Wheeler
The Bond Bug, which served as the platform for the Star Wars Land Speeder - from Karen's website: Bug Times
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I would recommend the book "Toymaker" which is his autobiography. It's a fascinating book of a time when a designers could turn their attention from a toy to a car or even an aircraft without skipping a beat. He was a prolific creator well into his older years and his views around toys in particular and how they should enable play and imagination are rather compelling. I would have loved to have visited one of his studio open days he did every year. Hopefully a museum will put on an exhibition one day as I know he had the forward thinking to put a lot of his work in to a museum archive in his later years.