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Welcome to Compete-tee-tion! This site tracks all the biggest news in the t-shirt design competition world, from reviews of new releases to information on new contest opportunities.

27 July 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Shirt.Woot Derby #562: Crests, Insignias and Seals

shirt.woot logo

As the 10K Cup closes, Shirt.Woot moves back to their normal derby routine with a new theme…

Starting Thursday at noon: Derby #562: Crests, Insignias and Seals

Design a tee that if the official mark of a something,  someone or group. No cream tees.


Meanwhile, the last segment of the 10K Cup, the Complex Simple Machines derby, is currently in voting and winding down to a close. The more technical theme may have depressed the number of entries this time around, but there are definitely still a bunch of submissions worthy of the prize. Here are two that I’m rooting for…

shirt.woot a universe unto itselfshirt.woot small victories

A Universe Unto Itself by tgentry is a gorgeous and unique piece, and it’s great to see the attention to detail in the technical accuracy of the projector. Color choices also make this design pop.

Small Victories by ApeLad finally finds something that a T-Rex’s tiny arms can be successful at.

The Complex Simple Machines derby ends on Thursday at noon. The top three vote-getters will each earn $1000 and $2 per item sold after the first day of sales. Those winners will be sold on Friday (1st), Saturday (2nd), and Sunday (3rd). Other designs that don’t place in the top 3 may be selected for a Plus sale on the following Monday, with each selected design earning $2 per item sold.

26 July 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Shirt.Woot’s Dystopia collection

shirt.woot dystopia

Shirt.Woot focused on dark times with their Dystopia plus sale, packed with designs that show all kinds of frightening futures. Here’s what caught my eye…

Best of the Bunch: To me, Greetings From Dystopia is the clear standout of this group, because it’s funny, immediately grabs your attention, and has a lot of little details that add to the appeal when you take a closer look.

Nicest Surprise: I hadn’t noticed Monday in the voting round, but I’m really glad to see it now- I love that every inch of the planet is covered in cool dystopian moments from pop culture.

This promotion will only last until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday. So if there’s something you like, grab it fast!

25 July 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Camiseteria’s Music is the Way 2.0

camiseteria music is the way

Music is the Way 2.0 by Báda interprets an iconic image in a new way by changing the perspective and showing that there’s more to the story. Even better, the first thing you notice (due to the size and proportions of the shapes) is the piano keys, so that Abbey Road reference is a nice surprise. It goes from a bold graphic about a piano, a symbol of music, and transforms into an ode to a specific group, the most famous band on the planet. It’s a neat transition, a surreal moment that ought to resonate with most audiences. And there’s also a lot of skill in this illustration, which manages to nail the musician likenesses despite the difficult angle. Rough edges and light distressing give the keys a look that feels right for pavement, and shadows inject just enough dimensionality to make both halves (keys and walkers) read realistically.

Camiseteria winners earn R$800 cash and R$500 in Camiseteria products.

24 July 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Whale of a Time and more new this week

threadless whale of a time

Whale of a Time by Christopher Phillips (cpdesign) is my favorite design this week because it’s such a fun and playful take on the animal. The main thrust of the humor is twofold, lying both in the unlikeliness of an animal so large being able to be stacked and in the novel use of the whale’s spouting. This arrangement makes the massive creatures seem acrobatic and creative, like a fun-loving crew of misfits. I like that each whale is a different type (culminating with the two flipping killer whales at the very top) and that each whale’s unique physical features are clear in the simplified lines of the art. The design’s smartest moment, though, might be one of the smallest- that tiny human scuba diver at the bottom, providing scale and adding to the humor by providing a self-insert for the viewer. It makes you imagine yourself stumbling upon something this incredible.

threadless new worldthreadless not today satan

New World by Dianne Delahunty (digsy) won Threadless’s Retrofuturism contest, and it’s a great pick. It’s a very optimistic design, showing a small family watching a rocket launch from an alien landscape, surrounded by a futuristic city. I love this image because it tells you so much in a glance- we know this planet is a safe, beautiful place because we see a family walking in a deep canyon. We also can tell a lot of people live here, because clean, modern buildings scatter across the tops of those cliffs. And because of the rocket and multiple planets visible in the sky, we can see that in this future there are a lot of worlds to visit and explore. Text at the bottom reinforces the message with a vacation slogan. It’s a great piece because you see the art and want to go there, to live in those buildings, see that exotic land, and find out where that rocket is headed.

Not Today Satan by Kelly Larson (Kellabell9) is a tattoo-style take on a popular saying. Contrast is the source of most of the humor for me, because while tattoos in this style are often associated with bikers and badasses, the slogan is most commonly uttered by little old ladies. The gag is further enhanced by the cheerfulness of the art, because the heart, flowers and smiling sparrows all look very upbeat while the words point towards a bleaker reality. Strong work overall, and I think the phrase is pretty popular on its own as well so this design should find a lot of takers.

threadless i lava youthreadless camp

I Lava You by ilovedoodle (ilovedoodle.com) is a pun design that really goes the extra mile. While many creators might have stopped at the pun, this piece becomes much more charming because it also includes the innovation of the heart-shaped lava explosion and a second volcano reacting to the display. Both these inclusions reframe the volcano’s eruption as a declaration of love, something very positive and pure in contrast to the destruction usually seen. That contrast between reality and the illustration really works to enhance the joke set out by the wordplay.

CAMP! by Brent Schoepf (wowrainbows) is a minimal design printed in a way that is equally understated, as a small emblem in the pocket position. There’s a real sense of peace to this design because of the even, regular size and spacing of lines, and it works well with the theme because that sense of calm is part of what many people appreciate about nature. But what really makes the art special is that there’s a lot of charm and fun as well, because although the sun image is simple in form, it’s packed with character. Round cheeks make it seem to glow with joy, and the choice to use that one curved line to suggest and eyebrow and nose leaves the face seeming very unique despite its basic elements. Very strong stuff.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Most winners earn $1 minimum per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

23 July 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Monsieur Poulet’s Empilement

monsieur poulet empilement

Empilement by Yohan Sacré won Monsieur Poulet‘s recent Dinos design contest, and it’s a wonderful choice. I love this way of depicting dinosaurs because it makes a joke of their massive size. Stacking any kind of animal would be fun, but it’s even funnier here because it’s just so unexpected… and yet. And yet, who’s to say what dinosaurs really did all day? I’d much rather imagine the Triceratops’ horns being used as a fun balancing apparatus than a necessary survival weapon. The dino selections are well-made, spanning many different sizes and body types, which encourages a lot of visual movement as the eye leaps from one character to the next. And tying it all together is that great blue watercolor fill, adding texture to each shape that leaves the dinosaurs feeling soft and friendly instead of scaly and rough. So much fun!

Winners at Monsieur Poulet earn 2 Euros per item sold, for a total of up to 2000 Euros.

22 July 2016 ~ 0 Comments

WeLoveFine’s StarCraft design contest winners

welovefine adjutant

WeLoveFine‘s StarCraft design contest Grand Prize winner is Adjutant by Syldenn, and it’s an excellent choice. For starters, it’s extremely refreshing to see this low corner print placement, a look that WeLoveFine doesn’t do very often. That off-center look is very important to the piece because it amplifies the unusual feel of the artwork and also allows the mass of wires to run off the hem, which makes the android character feel more vast. By mixing human elements with technological ones, the robot combines qualities of beauty and strangeness. There’s a really exotic feel to it, like we’re peering into a future that’s right around the corner. That said, there is one choice that doesn’t quite work- the size of the print. This design really calls for a larger print (in part to raise the focal point so it’s not so low on the body), and it’s a shame that the printing process used doesn’t seem to be up to the challenge.

Check out all the StarCraft design contest winners at WeLoveFine.

21 July 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Shirt.Woot’s Fake Promotional Tees collection

shirt.woot fake promotional tees

Sports, bake sales, politics and more are the subject of parody in Shirt.Woot’s Fake Promotional Tees plus sale. Here’s what caught my eye this week…

Best of the Bunch: Middle Earth Ring Toss Tournament has a cool look and is a witty reimagining of LOTR’s ring.

Nicest Surprise: Fire Swamp Fun Run won me over in voting, and I’m still impressed by its simplified style and smart references.

This promotion will only last until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday. So if there’s something you like, grab it fast!