Charles and Ray Eames made joyful play part of a serious and thoughtful design process – play to explore materials, to find new ways of looking at the world. Making toys and creative games sat alongside their product design practice, and each fed into the other.

Around the Barbican’s exhibition of their work, the Creative Learning department commissioned us to run a drop-in activity that connects to the Eames’ work for their Family Play event. The Light Machine is the result. It’s a game designed to trigger joyful creativity, and we were thrilled with how people threw themselves into playing with the tools we gave them.

Players start by blindly choosing a title from a range of cards, and then make the image that goes with it on a piece of acetate. The overhead projector transmutes and changes their image, and projects it huge and glorious on the wall. We printed the images and built up a gallery wall over the course of the day.

All the images can be seen on our Facebook page here.

All images apart from Light Machine pictures (c) Susana Sanroman