Carrot & Toast and My Little Opera have this afternoon been crowned the winners of the BLE 2019 License This! competition. were announced at Brand Licensing Europe this afternoon following an hour of pitching and presentations from seven finalists.
The brainchild of Drew Bristow, who was also a License This! finalist in 2018, Carrot & Toast are two best friends: an odd combination who adhere to the chaos-order theory. Carrot is grounded and sensible. Toast is a little haphazard, clumsy and silly. They both feature in a series of mini comics aimed at younger readers and their first adventure Carrot & Toast Are Coming Home sees them get into trouble on holiday when Toast loses his passport.
License This! judge, The Point.1888 founder Will Stewart, says: “It really wasn’t an easy decision this year, we had quite the battle choosing just two winners. My Little Opera is visually very beautiful, but what I loved about Carrot & Toast is that Drew had taken on board everything we said to him in last year’s final and returned with characters who have a distinctive identity. I also loved that he shared the back story of how his two characters came about – few creatives will share that level of vulnerability but I think it’s a a really important thing to do.”
My Little Opera is inspired by the world’s greatest operas and ballets and has a fresh visual illustrated narrative.
"Well known characters that were part of the contemporary culture a century ago have now been side-lined, unlike many from classic literature and myths,” says its creator Rosie Brooks. “I am bringing these characters to a modern audience through this new fun and humorous illustrated brand. The target demographic extends way beyond the ‘opera lovers’: it is a springboard for the creation a new world of characters with limitless global possibilities.”
Competition chair Kelvyn Gardner, pictured top with the winners, adds: “With over 50 entrants, it’s an achievement in its own right just to make the final.”
This year’s License This! winners will receive a free exhibition stand at BLE 2020 – which will run next year 6-8 October at London’s ExCel – one year’s Licensing International membership and PR support. Finalists will also receive legal consultation from competition sponsor Wynne-Jones.