A film by Omair Barkatulla. We’ve all been spoiled by computers. Appreciate typography.
A film by Omair Barkatulla. We’ve all been spoiled by computers. Appreciate typography.
An intrepid member of the Threadless community, ladykat, has spent the past year putting together a quilt made up of Threadless tees donated by members of the Threadless forums. Last June (2007), ladykat proposed the idea of creating a Threadless quilt by asking for donations of used Threadless tees that people didn’t want anymore.Â
The response from the Threadless community was astonishing. ladykat received nearly 100 shirts, enough to make 2 full size Threadless quilts comprised of 49 Threadless t-shirts arranged 7 squares by 7 squares. Each square prominently displays a design from one of the many unique Threadless designs. Very cool.
What’s even cooler is that ladykat will be giving away the one-of-a-kind Threadless quilt (this includes her hardwork and the donations of countless Threadless members!). To be eligible to win the quilt you need to 1.Â Write an original short story, essay, or poem somehow relating to Threadless tees or designs (1000 words max), 2. Enter the Threadless Calendar Contest, 3. Join the Threadless Product Shots Group on Flickr and upload at least one product shot. Click here to read the official rules of the contest. If you don’t win the contest, don’t worry, remember there are two quilts! The second Threadless quilt will be auctioned off with the proceeds going to charity. Get ready to bust out your checkbook if you go that route!
And without further ado, heres that awesome Threadless quilt made from donations and love!
UPDATE: I just got an email from ladykat (Kate) herself and she wanted to clarify what she’ll be doing with the 2nd quilt that she’ll be making.Â
“The auction for charity thing went by the wayside because I really wanted any Threadless fan to have a shot at winning the quilt, which would have meant a raffle rather than an auction, but there’s no easy way to do a legit raffle online. There are all sorts of weird state laws with raffles, it’s totally annoying. I ended deciding that my priority was having someone who cared win the quilt.”
“So yeah, it was actually a tough decision but I really wanted the quilt to go to a good home and just couldn’t figure out the charity thing in a good way. Originally I was just planning on making a quilt for myself, but when I got all those tees I knew I had to make another to pass on to a Threadless fan… and I knew I had to start with the one that I’d give away because otherwise I might never finish it! Someday… somehow… I’ll finally get around to that second quilt. :-)” – ladykat (Kate)
Fresh off his big $10,000 Design By Humans win, AJ Dimarucot (aka CollisionTheory) sat down to talk with me about his winning design Black Hole Sun, the stress of competition and the power of networking and family.Â
Coty: Congratulations on winning the Design By Humans $10,000 contest!Â You must be really excited. DBH stretched out announcing the winnerÂ for an entire week. Did that stress you out? How did you find out thatÂ you won and how did you respond?
AJ: I was stressed out during the whole competition from the Final 10 toÂ the announcement of the winner! I found out I won through my Mom andÂ Dad who called me up 4:30am Saturday my time. It was cool and sort ofÂ expected, only because the daily votes indicated that I was on the topÂ spot for the whole finals week. My first response was to check out theÂ site on my crappy cellphone.
Coty: What was your inspiration for Black Hole Sun? What did you try andÂ accomplish with this design?
AJ: I’ve recently been inspired by space/galaxy imagery and I’ve alwaysÂ wanted to do a design based on the solar eclipse. I like simpleÂ designs that overpower the shirt, also thought it was cool to useÂ negative space – the shirt color being the “hole”, indicating the moonÂ blocking the sun. DBH mentioned they can print anything with up to 14Â colors so I really pushed the original design without thinking aboutÂ color restrictions. I really think that the colors made the design.
Coty: DBH changed the colorways for the printed version of the shirt. HowÂ do you feel about this? Do you prefer your original colors over theÂ DBH assigned colors?
AJ: I was really hoping they printed the original colors because it reallyÂ made the design come alive on the shirt. In fact, I was expecting toÂ see that when I checked my phone after I found out I won. When I sawÂ the yellow and red on black I just thought my phone was acting up andÂ the colors were off. I only realized it was the colorway they choseÂ when I finally checked the site on my laptop.
They did print the correct colors on the white and grey tees thoughÂ which was cool. Just thought the design itself got printed bigger,Â either that or the model was wearing an extra small shirt. To beÂ honest, I was a bit sad at first but I guess DBH has their technicalÂ reasons and can do whatever they want with the design since it’s nowÂ theirs. I just hope people who voted for the original colorway stillÂ buy the shirt.
Coty: To win you had to get a ton of votes. Jimiyo went all out withÂ promoting his top 5 tee. Did you do anything special or extra toÂ publicize Black Hole Sun?
AJ: Funny you mentioned Jimiyo because every time he came out withÂ something to promote his design, I tried to come with something on myÂ own because it pressured me to get more votes!!!
Here’s some of the things that probably helped me win:
b) Also placed some banner ads on targeted websites during theÂ semi-finals week. I figured I could spend up to $1,000 to win theÂ $10,000. I ended up spending around $300 worth of banner ads.
c) My parents became my best campaign managers after they emailÂ blasted the plea for votes to everyone they knew. They have a hugeÂ network and it just created a ripple effect.
d) I emailed a local newspaper about being a finalist and theyÂ featured me,my t-shirt designs, and my plea for votes.
e) I was an invited speaker at a local design conference calledÂ Graphika Manila, which included Tokidoki, Pixar, and other FilipinoÂ artists. So I ended up pimping my design to around 1,000 people.
Coty: Finally, I think most people are interested to know how you’reÂ going to spend/use the cash prize?
AJ: Well I’m a family man so this goes partly to investing for the future.Â But before that, I’m bringing the family to Hong Kong for some R&R, maybeÂ upgrade my laptop (Mac?). Also planning to give some money to ourÂ supportive parents. Lastly, I’m putting up a baby clothing businessÂ with my wife – we want to do onesies. So I guess I’m also going to beÂ the designer for that. Do watch out for it. =)
Black Hole Sun is now available in the Design By Humans online store in three different shirt colorways. AJ, a Manila native, who calligraphy and bold patterns. He enjoys freelance and collaborative work. You can find out more about him and his work at his site, Collision Theory.
Congratulations to CollisionTheory for winning the huge $10,000 Design By Humans T-shirt design contest! CollisionTheory’s Black Hole Sun edged outÂ BRCollective’s Altitude Sickness tee to win the coveted prize.Â
“Inspired by solar eclipses and my continuous fascination with all things cosmic. Credit goes to Chris Cornell for the shirt title. =) This will go well with my Electric Sky shirt. Hope you like it.” – CollisionTheory
CollisionTheory did leave a post on the Emptees boards after someone posted a congratulatory thread. Here’s what he said:
“Wow! This is the best thing to wake up to. It’s a little disappointing that they didn’t print the original colorway I designed though.
Anyway, I’m honored to have competed against the best. It reaffirms my belief that my less drawn, abstract style can go well against the top illustrators in the game .After all, art should be diverse and dynamic so I’m bringing my own style and vision to the table no matter what other people say.
To Jimiyo, even in competition, you have been supportive and pushed me to promote the design the best way I could. I owe you a beer my friend.
And lastly, to emptees, had it not been for this site, I would not have matured into the artist I am today. And winning in any tshirt competition would have been farthest from my mind. So I hope this serves as an inspiration to every guy and gal starting out.
So there just had to say that. Now go buy my shirt you foolz!” – CollisionTheory
I discovered these posters on Jack Johnson’s site and absolutely love them. These are limited edition posters made for Jack’s 2008 Sleep Through The Static Tour. Each of these posters represent a different city from Jack’s summer tour and each of the 15 posters were made by a different artist. I just love the colors and the artwork. Don’t you think they go well with Jack’s music?
By the way, a collection of Sleep Through The Static remixes were released onÂ iTunes this past week. On it you can find remixes of Hope (2 versions), Losing Keys, Monsoon, Angel, They Do, They Don’t, and If I Had Eyes. There are also three videos that come with this release, including a Sleep Through The Static/I Love You and Buddha Too, Enemy and Adrift. Be sure to check it out!
Here are 6 of my faves of the 15 limited edition posters. What do you think about them?
And to keep the Jack Johnson/Apple theme going, here’s a video of Jack performing at the Apple Media Event a few weeks ago, when they unveiled those disturbingly beautiful new iPod Nano’s.
Welcome to this weeks Indie Tee Spotlight! This week I feature Rethink Clothing and its founder, Andy Meyer. Rethink Clothing is a unique clothing brand with a unique target audience and unique designer base. I was fortunate to have been able to have a word with Rethink’s Andy Meyer to discuss his brand, his designs and the future of Rethink Clothing.Â
Andy Meyer:Â At Rethink I am really trying to switch up how things are done design wise. The unique thing is that I chose only college enrolled artists. Now, I am willing to admit I have had one designer who wasn’t in college. You may think, doesn’t this ruin your core premise? Not really, Grant is a high school kid, who has become a friend of mine through Emptees. While he isn’t in college you will be happy to know my money went to buying his parking pass for school and towards his car so he can get to college.
Andy Meyer:Â Actually in my working I have encountered little feistiness and more welcoming arms. I see Rethink as a way for designers to have a great outlet for their talent and great start to a portfolio. Also, any college student who is looking for an actual worthwhile project other than some B.S fake sign for a fictional donut shop. More than that though is the fact that each designer brings some different background, edge, style, talent, and attitude. I think this all leads to a stronger brand with mucho appeal.
Andy Meyer:Â Rethink is still only staffed by me. Now this isnt really the case, I have a solid support network of friends who help me make decisions, balance books and promote. Advice to all your entrepenureal readers, have your ducks in a row before you start. This was kind of a joke and reaction to some hilarious decisons while at a party and I started something with little knowledge or idea of what I wanted. So make sure you have your mind right. Also gobs of money and gorgeous women to model wouldn’t hurt either.
Andy Meyer:Â Yes sir. Well I have only one more new design coming out and new scheme of the super soaker shirt. The shirt by Andrew Olivier is awesome. He is a college freshman from Canada and an awesome artist. His style is something new for rethink, but the theme is something I love. On the shirt you can see a city on a shelf which is falling and there are people parachuting out of the buildings. This is Rethink at its heart – something airy, fun and not what you would expect or find anywhere else. I am starting now to hone my design choosing skills to things that you cant find elsewhere and that have an air of oddity to them, such as a half naked lady on the wing of a space shuttle.
Andy Meyer:Â Not for now. Johnny is a wild man though which is awesome, he is quite the college entrepenuer which is what really make me wanna sponsor the guy. Also, It is always nice to know my shirts are being worn by a man flying off the ropes, it brings up my brands street cred. I am always looking to sponsor someone who has a unique edge to them, whether that be an awesome band or a collegiate underwater basket weaving team. Know anyone???
Andy Meyer:Â Awesome, Awesome, is all I can say about Shirt.Woot and Phil at Woot in general. They have extended to me an amazing oppurtunity that has helped expand me into a fledgling little business. I haven’t submitted anything to Woot on the design side, probably because most of my designs look like I did them while drunk and in MS Paint.
Andy Meyer: Really, the way I do it now is by having students send me an email saying they are interested, what style they like to do and a portfolio of some past work. When I see a project that will be awesome for the brand then I will hit them up!
*Thanks to Andy Meyer and Rethink Clothing for taking the time to discuss all the cool things happening at Rethink. Keep up the great work!
Featured Indie Tee Spotlight artist, Jimiyo, finished 4th place in the big $10,000 Design By Humans contest. Not the finish he wanted, but nonetheless, he finished in the top end amongst a handful of very talented artists. Here’s what he had to say on his blog:
“At least it’s a hot looking shirt. One color too.. and they are selling it for $24?Â They are going to be making some good margin on this shirt, as well as, for the $1000 payout to me, I did some massive promotions.Â Was all the work worth it? Not sure. The $1000 is definitely not worth the time investment, but then is having participated and reached the top tier level of the contest worth the time investment? Because theoretically, many new eyes have been exposed to my name and work.Â Still feel Defeated, but elated it’s finally over. Now I can start workin!” – Jimiyo
Only thing left to do now is to go and buy his T-shirt!Â
A few weeks ago I decided to test out Spreadshirt by having a couple of shirts printed with the Glorious Nonsensities logo. Mr. Elephant on a brain wanted his own tee and so I gave Spreadshirt a shot. I was skeptical at first since I had previously tried CafePress and was unimpressed with the results. The CafePress shirt I had printed a year or two ago seemed very cheap and the print resembled an iron-on. Needless to say, I didn’t expect much from the Spreadshirt print but out of curiosity was still interested to see what the final product looked like compared to my CafePress print.Â
The Spreadshirt experience begins with the interactive and easy to use T-shirt Designer. Using the T-shirt Designer is essentially a three step process: 1. choose your product (i.e. type of t-shirt), 2. upload and placement of your design and/or text, 3. checkout. It really is as easy as that three step process. Spreadshirt comes with a couple of preloaded designs for you to add to your T-shirt, if none of those are to your liking then you are free to upload your own designs. You can easily increases and decrease the size of the design in the T-shirt Designer as needed and there are tools that allow you to easily align your design.Â
Once your custom tee is designed you can easily select the size and quantity of shirts that you would like to order. The only problem here is that if you wanted to different sizes, you would need to go through the design process for each size. It would be much more convenient if you could design once and then select different sizes (for a specific product) and quantities. The way that it is now, you can only select one size per design and then adjust the amount of that particular size you would like to order.Â
Prices vary depending on the product you decide to print on. Prices for mens tees start off at around 10 bucks for lightweight tees, while American Apparel tees start at a more pricey 19 bucks. And of course you get charged for each design you upload or text you decide to print.Â I paid $12.40 for each of the three shirts that I ordered (two guy tees and one ladies tee). I received my product within a week, which is pretty speedy considering I live in Hawaii and that it is a custom product. Shipping costs cary depending on how you much spend (shipping for me cost $4.99 for the three tees I ordered).Â
I was very happy with the tees that I received. They were much better, quality wise, compared to my past experience with CafePress. If you plan to print hundreds of tees then Spreadshirt is probably too pricey of an option. However, if you need a custom, one off tee, then I highly recommend Spreadshirt!
Finally, here’s a promotional video from Spreadshirt (which is pretty neat to watch I have to say).Â
Apparently, Microsoft has decided to embark on a 300 million dollar marketing blitz in hopes of changing the image that Apple has portrayed PC users to be with their “I’m a Mac, I’m a PC” ad campaign. They say imitation is the greatest form of flattery, but my goodness, will Microsoft ever be able to come up with anything original?
Instead of trying to defend themselves by repeatedly using a line that Apple made into catchphrase they once again demonstrate a lack of innovation and creativity. This is the story of Microsoft. This is a lame attempt by Microsoft to appear hip. They even tried extra hard by getting Pharrell Williams and Eva Longoria in the commercial, when the recently short-lived and ill-fated Gates-Seinfeld campaign failed.Â
It hurts Microsoft even more that Pharrell and some of the other notables in the “I’m a PC” campaign are known Mac users. It turns out that Pharrell has stated as having used anÂ “Apple Power Mac Dual 1.8 GHz G5 with Cinema Display” to produce the album Seeing Sounds. Pharrel has also talked about his love for the iPod on many occasions, here’s an example.Â
Microsoft, instead of trying to make yourself look cool and hip by buying out a Mac user, like Pharrell Williams, who has hip-hop credentials and the coolness factor you so desire, maybe you should focus your ad campaigns on your products. I hear Windows Vista makes for a great operating system. Or not.
Update: Further digging by some intrepid people in InternetLAND has found that Macs were used to create the images distributedÂ and posted on the Microsoft’s Web site for the “I’m a PC” ad campaign. Here’s an excerpt form the article:
Several digital images thatÂ MicrosoftÂ has posted on its Web site to trumpet its new â€œIâ€™m a PCâ€ ad campaign were actually created on Macs, according to the filesâ€™ originating-software stamp.
Four of the images that Microsoft made available on itsPressPassÂ site last week display the designation â€œAdobe PhotoshopÂ C3 Macintoshâ€ when their file properties are examined. The images appear to be frames from the television ads thatÂ Microsoft launcehd Thursday.
One of the images is of a real Microsoft engineer, identified only as â€œSean,â€ who resembles John Hodgman, the actor who plays the PC character inÂ Appleâ€™sÂ iconic ads. Reportedly, Microsoft will play off Appleâ€™s own campaignâ€”during which Hodgman introduces himself with the line, â€œHello, Iâ€™m a PCâ€â€”with its engineer saying â€œHello, Iâ€™m a PC, and Iâ€™ve been made into a stereotype.â€
Other images posted by Microsoft last Thursday include shots of author Deepak Chopra; Canadian adventurer and educator Geoff Green, founder of Students on Ice Expeditions; and a shark-surround diver named â€œMeaghan.â€
Not all of the images on the PressPass site were generated on Macs. The sample print ads, which highlight the campaignâ€™s â€œLife Without Wallsâ€ slogan, were produced using the Windows version of Adobe Photoshop, according to their files.
The originating software and platform can be found in downloaded versions of the files using built-in tools on either a Mac runningÂ Mac OS XÂ or on a PC running Windows.
InÂ Windows XP, for instance, users can view the tag by right-clicking the downloaded file, selecting Properties from the drop-down menu, then clicking the Summary tab. â€œAdobe Photoshop CS3 Macintoshâ€ appears beside â€œCreation Software.â€
On a Mac, after opening the downloaded file in Preview, users can see the tag by choosing Inspector from the Tools menu, clicking on the middle More Info tab, then clicking on the tab marked TIFF. â€œAdobe Photoshop CS3 Macintoshâ€ appears beside â€œSoftware.â€
Microsoftâ€™s campaign is the creation of the Crispin Porter + Bogusky agency, part of a $300 million effort to revamp Windows Vistaâ€™s reputation.
This is week three of the Indie Tee Spotlight and I have to admit that I have been happy with the success of this particular segment on my blog. I’ve received a bunch of emails from tee brands/designers wanting to be featured here. I appreciate all of the interest and if you sent me an email then you should have gotten a response on how you can be featured here! And if you’re interested please feel free to contact me!
Having said that, I am happy to announce Jimiyo as our featured Indie Designer for this week! Jimiyo is well known within the Indie Tee community and has had much success with his designs. His designs has been featured on Tee Fury, Shirt.Woot, Uneetee, and Design by Humans. More recently, one of Jimiyo’s designs, Fight The Good Fight, was announced as a top 5 finalist in the $10,000 Design by Humans contest.
I was fortunate enough to talk with Jimiyo about his passion, designing tees.Â
Jimiyo: I suppose my main motivation is what the money will buy. It’s not material possessions that I want, its Freedom.Â It would buy me approximately 3 months of guilt free time that I could use to to work on projects I have put on the back burner since there is always some anxiety now about finances since I am freelancing.Â Obviously there are other advantages, like exposure for my freelance career, a nice line to add to the CV, prestige, etc, but all those are secondary.
Jimiyo: I won’t be offended if people think I have bought votes, because I provided DBH with my best effort art that is obviously indicative of some skill. It would be different if I had submitted a shoddy piece of work and then bought votes.
What is the difference between buying votes with money, and buying the votes with time and effort that I have invested in creating a piece of art that I hope that people like?
In contrast, I have focused at least a decade of my life to refining my craft with great effort and dedication.
$1000 of $10,000 is nothing in comparison, especially when there’s absolutely no risk to me whatsoever. I do not have to expend $1000 if I do not win. I have already expended many hours, many days, daresay many months, creating art, which if you could quantify the experience and skillset I have fostered over the years, is it repulsive to say, I am essentially buying votes with a horrendously large amount of philosophical cash?
1. DBH created this monster prize contest to drive traffic as well as drive a higher quantity and quality of art to their site.
2. By offering money as an incentive, artists promoted themselves and most likely drove a significant amount of users to join the community. Since the artists probably contacted their fan base for votes, fans will be more inclined to purchasing a product to whom they associate.
Essentially, I did just the same. I offered an incentive, for which there is only potential gain, in which the final result is a symbiotic return on each party’s efforts.
As far as “artificial” votes, that wording would imply fraudulent behavior similar to creating fake accounts. That is not the case. With my tactic, Im bringing DBH real people who actually have to sign up to vote and comment. With that, DBH is one major step closer to having a new customer.
Jimiyo: I have not been accepted at Threadless. My best efforts were moderately ignored there. My style doesnt not fit with their market.
I love shirt.woot. They payout $1000+. Joel is fantastic, no, Terrific, to deal with and I truly enjoy the mentality of Wooter consumer base. Their approval is difficult to earn, and thankfully, somehow, I have been able to win a small portion of their acceptance.
TeeFury does not have as big a market as Woot, so although the payout is not as great, there is nothing greater than being able to submit a design I created without catering to a specific market and have it be accepted. With Woot, I do have to take into consideration their market.
Also the advantage of no copyright restrictions at TeeFury has allowed me get the most financially out of my designs.
I can’t say that there’s one I like the best. They are like friends. There are things about each my friends that I hate and love.
Jimiyo: Beyond making sure you output your best artistic effort, it’s a numbers game. The only reason I am seemingly successful is because I have submitted a significant number of entries to several different contests.
Also, just keep trying to win. If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Just do it. Gotta be in it to win it.
I am thoroughly impressed with WanderingBert from Threadless.com. If you look at his profile, I think he was up to about 100 submissions until he won his first Threadless contest. It was through shear tenacity, as well as great art, that he won. Soon after his first printing, they printed several more.
You have to be willing to sacrifice for longterm accomplishments, and be willing to lose, over and over again.
I plan on writing a year end results of my experience in January 09, until then here is a small blog I wrote with tips and information about my experiences with contests so far.
Jimiyo: I studied a bit before creating this design. Shirt.woot.com has a running stock of about 30 designs, which they eliminate 7 of every week with replacements. Some of the longest running designs I noticed were zombie related designs.
Beyond that, as far as the success of the tees, I don’t attribute it to anything more than the sheer traffic that shirt.woot.com is able to harness.Â You offer a moderately entertaining design on a soft, quality American Apparel tee for $10 to 75,000-150,000 views, a 2% close rate isn’t all that impressive.
As far as t-shirt communities being inclined towards a specific topic, I have no idea. I love LOLCatz, some people don’t.
Jimiyo: Collision Theory. He is my internet friend. Unfortunately, I have not had a chance to really become friends with the other artists.Â Besides, AJ is a stand up guy. It seems people are prone to being more truthful in their identities on the internet, and AJ has always exhibited a kind and amicable persona.
Also, this will sound crazy, but if I am correct, the monetary conversion rate for the Phillipines is incredible. I imagine there would be a greater benefit for AJ to receive the prize money than it would benefit me. I am a single man with only myself to take care of. I believe AJ is a family man.
*Thanks to Jimiyo for taking the time out to have a word with me, it’s very much appreciated! Now, be sure to go to Design by Humans and vote for Jimiyo!