Tilly Paint

Tilly Paint is a very simple paint program for very young children.

It's a bit like a cross between finger painting and etch-a-sketch.

It's quite therapeutic for grown-ups too.

How to use it

Start it up and move the mouse - just moving the mouse makes marks on the screen. Press the space bar or click the mouse to change the colour - you get a random colour and a random blob size. Move the mouse slowly to get lines, move it quickly to get spots. To get a psychedelic catepillar, move the mouse whilst holding the space bar down.
Press S to save the picture
Press shift-backspace to erase the picture (1.2 only)
Hold down the shift key to move your mouse without making a mark (1.2 only)
Press shift-Q to quit (version 1.2, it's just Q in 1.0)

Cut to the chase, how do I download it?

Right here, right now. It's available for Mac, Windows and Linux/intel386.
The Mac version has been tested in OS 10.4.2 but might run is OS 9 with CarbonLib installed. (Update - probably won't run on modern Macs post-10.6.8 without Rosetta)
The Windows version has been tested on WindowsXP.
The Linux version has been tested on a Live version of Suse Linux 10.0 on an IBM ThinkPad - I couldn't get it to run in the live version of Ubuntu Linux (I think some required libraries are missing).
download TillyPaint 1.2 for Mac (compressed .dmg disk image) - this version allows you to save images in PICT format and move the mouse without making a mark. It also starts with a random colour, rather than black.
download TillyPaint 1.2 for Linux/386 (zip file)
download TillyPaint 1.0 for Windows (zip file)
It's freeware, but all rights are reserved. You may distribute it in an unmodified form with the readme file intact.


I had the idea for it when my first child was very small - he could drag a mouse around but couldn't get the hang of holding the mouse button down and dragging at the same time - even the simplest paint program for children requires the child to click to make a mark.

I never got around to writing my paint program when Henry was small, nor William. But now Tilly is here and I managed to figure it out.

The author

TillyPaint is written by Giles Booth. It's freeware but all rights are reserved. You may distribute it in an unmodified form with the read me file intact.

The future

Keep an eye on this web site to see if I've developed it any further - ideas include printing and saving, noises, possibility of colour changes being triggered by sound (synaesthesia, anyone?). If you have any ideas or comments about TillyPaint, drop me a line at giles dot booth at gmail dot com.

Software © 2005 Giles Booth,
London UK

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