Educational Playspaces

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Designer: Luci Creative

The Next Door Foundation (NDF) serves under-resourced families in Milwaukee, ensuring thousands of children get a strong start to life through high quality, personalized early childhood education. Thanks to recent donations and a successful fundraising campaign, NDF was able to reimagine three of its early childhood learning spaces: a playroom for 0-3 year olds, a playroom for 3-4 year olds, and a library space.

The rooms are constructed with elements for big body play, including custom-fabricated climbing structures. Dimensional animals and plants reflective of the subject matter, are made using layered substrates to bring the illustrations to life. Each of the wooden animals, characters, and plants were hand-painted, working closely with the graphic and illustration team at designer Luci Creative

Inspired by watercolor children’s book illustrations, the painterly, stylistic themes of Under the Sea, Outer Space, and Rainforest incorporate expressive hand-lettered typography, illustrations and a bold, energetic color palette for a playful and whimsical approach. Quotes from famous Black activists and writers as well as children characters are incorporated into the themes of the room to help create a sense of representation and inspiration.


Scenic Painting