How Outcast Began

The idea of Outcast Otter began on a trip to the U.S. in the summer of 2012.  My son, Tristan, my wife, Claudia, and I were off to Colorado.  We travel frequently.  In fact, by the time he was three years old, Tristan already had American Airline’s Gold Membership status. Each time we prepared for a trip, Tristan would find himself in a quandary as to which stuffed animal would accompany him.  The chosen character differed every time.

                                            Tristan in NYC

                                            Tristan in NYC

As a creator, I examined this situation. What if Tristan had a travel companion?  What if he had a character who was always on standby: forever reliable for good times and adventures? 

I reviewed a cast of characters – some famous, some less so – and one animal instantly came to mind: an inquisitive, cute, fury, lovable critter that, for reasons unbeknown to me, had never entered the children’s plush animal realm. Of course, I was thinking of a river otter!

I envisioned a character that would stand out from the blank faces, brown eyes, and forced smiles that litter global toy stores.  I wanted that moment; that moment in a toy store when a child first meets his or her lifelong companion. That friend with whom they will share joy; who will be their bravery in times of fear; their consolation in times of sadness; their rock in times of change. It was immediately apparent to me that, for an entire generation of children, that moment will be with this otter. 

Outcast has many distinctions – a blue baseball cap, red handkerchief, solar timepiece – but his most pronounced feature are his mismatched eyes – one blue, one black – which have earned him the name, Outcast.  Every child has at some point felt different or out of place; among the wondrous qualities of Outcast is that he embraces his uniqueness. He is proud to be different and teaches children to adopt a similar philosophy: to be proud of their unique personalities and features, too.

In creating Outcast, I envisioned a character sweeping children to foreign destinations, rendezvousing with people from all countries, expanding their knowledge of the world, and introducing ‘globalization’ – allowing children membership in the Outcast club.

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Outcast members transcend the boundaries of geography, inspire innovation, and with excitement embrace the future. They are curious, brave, and open-minded; they see the world and recognize its immense possibilities.  

Outcast members’ cross-cultural understanding will enrich the world: they are the creators, the ones propelling all of us forward.  Outcast Otter is not just a toy, he is a friend, and a lifestyle... 

                                 Let's Travel!


                     Lads in Riga, Latvia

                     Lads in Riga, Latvia

         Lads at the Beverly Hills Hotel

         Lads at the Beverly Hills Hotel

           Outcast Otter in Zurich

           Outcast Otter in Zurich

                       Tristan in his new role -- big brother!  

                       Tristan in his new role -- big brother!  

                                     Conrad Aston's first flight - #AA

                                     Conrad Aston's first flight - #AA