Twinkl dinosaur Archaeopteryx, Deinonychus and Dunkleosteus paper toy craft model educational printable graphic design Alex Gwynne
Client : Twinkl Educational Publishing

FUT Client Image - TwinklTwinkl is a digital educational publisher, creating digital resources for teachers to use in the classroom with children of all ages. I worked for Twinkl as a graphic designer and paper engineer for three years creating hundreds of educational paper crafts for use in the classroom and at home. As Twinkl offers the paper crafts as part of their subscription model none of the work I designed whilst with the company are available for download on the Fold Up Toys website, but are available though Twinkl for subscribers.

About Project

This series of dinosaur paper toys was designed for Twinkl in 2017, the set includes 10 models, including 4 smaller designs, the series was designed to scale in difficulty so children of different key stages would be able to build different dinosaurs.

The triceratops, stegosaurus and Ankylosaurus were designed to be simple paper crafts, with more rounded out and simplified edges to make construction quick and easy, where as the tyrannosaurus, spinosaurus and pterodactyl were more complex and featured more advanced paper engineering. A single page including three smaller paper toys, the archaeopteryx, deinonychus  and Dunkleosteus bridge the gap by being simple toys, but on a smaller scale requiring more advanced hand to eye coadunation.

The series was designed in a single working week, which will sound impressive to fellow paper toy designers but was a pretty standard turnaround time for the workplace I was in.

You can find out more about this paper model series by watching the project overview video here.

About the archaeopteryx, deinonychus and Dunkleosteus Models

The archaeopteryx, deinonychus  and dunkleosteus all fit onto a single page together. The deinonychus acts as a replacement for the more popular velociraptor and uses the same template as the baby t-rex from the same line of dinosaur paper toys. Infact the deinonychus was designed first and was later added to the t-rex template to fill empty space. If we compared the baby t-rex to the deinonychus we can see the difference in head texture that helps set the two apart.

The archaeopteryx is a model I had promised myself I would create the next time I worked on a dinosaur project, it’s one of my favourite dinosaurs and I think an important step towards introducing more scientifically accurate dinosaurs to the general public something I feel greatly invested in. The archaeopteryx template is similar to that of the deinonychus but with a key difference, the body is split into two parts, one is a triangular section that is created when gluing the two sides of the head together and the other creates the legs wings and tail. The texture on the archaeopteryx is quite complex compared to other models in this series, but was necessary to give the illusion of feathers where I couldn’t draw anything more detailed because of the line thickness. I decided to make the skin colour of the archaeopteryx blue, and contrast it against a reddy brown feather colour. This was simply to make the archaeopteryx look cooler, and since some roosters can have blue skin sections instead of red didn’t seem too unrealistic. A spine of feathers runs down the back of the creature, which is created from the same section that holds the head.


Lastly we have the dunkleosteus a bone headed fish. I wanted to add more aquatic prehistoric creatures to this series, like the liopleurodon, but I was already pushing it with the amount of creatures in this series and the time I spent designing them, so I settled with just adding one small fish like creature. The dunkleosteus fits across the bottom of the page in a single line that’s folding across itself to create the body and main fin. The dunkleosteus is another one of my favorite dinosaurs, if you can call it that, it has an iconic skull like head and a fearsome face, I feel like making it one of the smaller creatures in the series might be underselling it because they were so huge. The colour pallet is a green for the skin and grey for the bone to resemble and signify rock or stone.

Designer Notes

This series of dinosaurs was a lot of fun to work on, mostly because dinosaurs are pretty cool.

Twinkl Tyrannosaurus-Rex


Twinkl Spinosaurus


Twinkl Archaeopteryx, Deinonychus and Dunkleosteus


Twinkl Pterodactyl