Archive | threadless

18 July 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Life in Technicolor and more new this week

Life in Technicolor by Grant Shepley (Gamma-Ray) is my favorite Threadless print this week. I love how much symbolism there is in the idea of the sky covered in a TV test pattern. There’s the sense that the lone hiker is testing himself against the elements, the idea that while civilization creates order the outdoors is naturally out of order, and even the text seems to ask the viewer to take a minute to drink in their surroundings. On top of that, the striped sky and colorful landscape are beautiful to look at and read as a modern interpretation of the colors of the sunset. Excellent work, and very memorable.

Light the Way by Petr Stepanov (Steppeua) transforms a lighthouse in a novel way, changing the light into a giant hand giving the middle finger. While this at first feels very opposite to the pristine beauty of a lighthouse, it’s very true to their purpose- the middle finger calls out a hazard and warns others not to get too close. The busyness of the lower section of the illustration sets the scene nicely with a fence and a smattering of houses (and it’s fun to think about the kind of people who might live there!), while the top section only contains the gesture and a pair of beams directing more attention to it. This is a smart way to make sure the design’s joke gets seen immediately.

Nature Greetings by Tatak Waskitho (skitchism) takes its inspiration from the style of postcard that proclaims greetings from a location spelled out in a wave of shadowed letters. But instead of being from a precise place like Kansas or San Jose, this destination is Nature. The images within the lettering clarify further, showing a lush landscape of mountains, trees, and even a lake, the sort of idealized place many picture when imagining the Great Outdoors. Rather than leaving it at that, there’s a small tent with the words Let’s Camp scrawled on it tucked away in the bottom right corner. This element both helps to balance out the rest of the design (providing counterweight to the Greetings text) and brings the viewer into the piece- instead of just looking at nature, it’s now about really immersing oneself there.

AverageMan by Mathiole (mathiole) parodies One Punch man by making him even more ordinary. Instead of being a hero with an amazing skill, AverageMan is just a guy in his underwear wearing socks with sandals. He won’t save the day, though if you’re lucky he might save you a cup of coffee. The realism of the illustration, which takes pains to highlight his scruffy beard and leg hair, helps to make the character look especially lazy and unhappy, while details like the small 2.5 stars graphic at the top and the I Heart blank mug reinforce his lack of distinguishing features or interests. One Punch Man fans ought to dig this.

I Believe… by Peter Kramar (badbasilisk) has the feel of a buddy comedy, where two unlikely pals get into all kinds of hijinks. The bigfoot character has the feel of an overgrown hippy with his wild hair, roller skates, and neon rainbow accessories. Meanwhile, the alien who rides on his shoulders is small, hairless, and plainly dressed, very much the opposite of his bigger companion. Even their expressions couldn’t be more different, with the alien wildly enthusiastic while bigfoot remains pleasantly tranquil. It’s a a fun concept, and I love how clearly their personalities are channeled through their poses.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Most winners earn $1 to $7 per item sold.

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15 July 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Industrial design contest

Think like a machine for Threadless‘s new Industrial design competition! Here’s what they’re looking for…

From warehouse districts billowing exhaust to steel skyscrapers, suspension bridges, and concrete galore, society grinds along with the advances afforded us by industry. The Industrial Revolution of the mid-seventeenth century forever changed urban life in the United States. Transitioning from hand production to machinery, cities embraced new manufacturing processes, harnessing steam and water power. The rise of the mechanized factory system fueled large-scale production and booming city centers blossomed across the nation.

Captains of commerce, we welcome your depictions of the city’s grittiest inner workings in this industrial design challenge. Show us how steaming vats of productivity, assembly lines, factory workers, and commerce of all kinds have shaped the efficient ways of our modern world. We want designs with moxie—spin those wheels and give us all you got.

This contest opens to entries on July 19th and ends on August 2nd, 2019. One winner will earn $1000 cash and a $500 Threadless gift code. Also, all designers printed will earn $1 to $7 per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

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11 July 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Spirit Animal Cat and more new this week

Spirit Animal Cat by dandingeroz (dandingeroz) is my favorite Threadless print this week, which takes its inspiration from traditional Japanese prints like the famous Great Wave Off Kanagawa. But in addition to the landscape, there’s also another image being formed- the curves of the waves, tree with blossoms, and orange sky create the silhouette of a contemplative-looking house cat. It’s an image that immediately captures the imagination, feeling both like the cat embodies the spirit of the place and that these scenes might depict what’s on the cat’s mind. The depth of the layers (especially because of the addition of the temple in the back) and sheer amount of detail help to create a piece that stands out as a lot more thoughtful and artistic than the average cat shirt. Good stuff.

Family Time by Walter Wilkes (WallyWilkes) won Threadless’s Time design contest, and it’s a very worth winner. I like the way it takes a familiar phrase literally, and then follows that thought to its logical conclusion- a family of clocks, with the digital mother and analog father holding hands with a child whose face contains elements of the faces of both its parents. It’s sweet, and in its posing manages to imply that this trio is spending valuable time together. A simple heart (not really needed, but not a bad addition either) makes sure the message reads loud and clear.

Hungry Shark by Perry Beane (BeanePod) is a fun bit of 80s summer awesomeness… with a modern twist. The 80s style references are clear enough, with their familiar visuals channeled in the zebra print, geometric shapes, neon palette and confetti look. But below the Hungry Shark text, there’s a callback to the recent Baby Shark song, making the cruelest thing about this shirt not the obvious severed limb but instead the fact that whoever sees it is now doomed to have the song lodged in their head. Still, it looks quite cool, so it’s probably worth the chance of earworm.

Pacer by Juan Pablo Betancourt Falco (panobetancourt) is a design that I didn’t expect to like, as I don’t have any interest in cars and generally prefer cleverness to pure art. But there’s something sneakily charming about this design and the way it grabs the eye. The strong angle and perspective used pull you into the vehicle’s interior, where the illustration style becomes sketchier as though obscured by reflections on glass. And the human hand’s rendering of the car’s lines make it feel worn, like a machine that’s been used hard through the years and acquired a few well-earned dents. Pretty neat!

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Most winners earn $1 to $7 per item sold.

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08 July 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Sweatshirts design contest

Get ready to bundle up in Threadless‘s new Sweatshirts design competition! Here’s what they’re looking for…

Welcome warm layers with fresh art. For this cozy challenge, we summon your most creative concepts to adorn a zip-up, pullover or crew sweatshirt. No matter the season, a perfectly fitting, graphic sweatshirt makes a chilly moment enjoyable. Imagine stepping outside on the first crisp day of fall—what’s your ideal sweatshirt look like? What sweatshirt would you wear for a summer bonfire on the beach?

Let your endless creativity inspire you for this anything-goes design challenge. Pullover and crew sweatshirts will sport your designs on the front (consider playing with a pocket-sized emblem on the chest) while designs will embellish the back of zip-up hoodies. Prepare your friends, family, and followers for cold times with your brand-new design on a comfy sweatshirt!

This contest opens to entries on July 12th and ends on August 26th, 2019. One winner will earn $1000 cash and a $500 Threadless gift code. Also, all designers printed will earn $1 to $7 per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

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04 July 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Ramen Dragon and more new this week

Ramen Dragon by Ilustrata (Ilustrata) is my favorite Threadless print this week. The combination of the noodles and dragon shape is extremely expressive, with smooth lengths forming a curved body while fronds extend to create whiskers and spikes. A mass of mushrooms gives the dragon’s back the appearance of plates, while seaweed, spring onions, and chopsticks hit dramatic angles to emphasize the action. The soup’s broth bears a strong resemblance to the famous Great Wave off Kanagawa piece, and its scale (along with the clouds below the bowl) sets the scene for an epically huge creature (despite ramen’s normally small size). Extremely well conceived and illustrated.

Hello Darkness by RJ Artworks (rjartworks) feels deliciously vintage, with its illustration so heavy on shadows and backed with bright colors. There’s a hypnotic sense to the wavy lines on red that make the raven feel like a powerful, mystic figure, and his skull perch tilts the balance towards evil. The text seems to be drawn rather than based on a font, which gives the artist the opportunity to both make each letter unique and also to add lots of ornate serifs, a choice that leaves the wording feeling like it might be plucked directly from a book on magic or alchemy. The design’s nicest moment, though, has to be that strange, smokey background- it sets a creepy ambiance for the piece, and the lack of symmetry in that area makes everything seem sinister, uneasy.

Street Cat by movepencilmove (pluskin) has doodle-style charm with its black ink on white and consistent line width. The amount of detail, which gives the fish board scales and adds a fur texture to the cat’s shadows, helps the design to come alive, though, and elevates it from its sketchy brethren. The cat’s very odd pose is so awkward you can’t avoid seeing the motion in it, and the effort it took to flip the board. I’m not too up on skateboard terminology and Google wasn’t terribly helpful, but if it turns out that the cat or dead fish are references to a real skateboard trick, that makes the design even more clever (although I also enjoy it as pleasant nonsense).

Baucycle by sebastian (sebasebi) won Threadless’s Baauhaus challenge, and it’s an excellent choice. The bike naturally lends itself towards becoming a series of geometric figures like lines and circles, and the fresh not quite primary color palette hits a nostalgic note that suits both the art style and machine portrayed. In particular, I like the recurring motif of parallel lines which serves to strengthen the Bauhaus influence. I have to say, though, that I’m torn about the inclusion of the red curved lines around the seat- while it speaks to the idea of motion, the largest red circle doesn’t seem to actually represent anything in the way the bike functions or how it is used.

A N I M E W A V E by Ilustrata (Ilustrata) feels like if the jungle got an anime-themed virus. The leaves are bountiful, but behind them lurks familiar faces peering back in bright magenta- Totoro, Astro Boy, Sailor Moon and more, blank-eyed and flushed. It’s already feeling a bit sickly, made only more so by the error message windows peppered through the background. It’s almost like a mashup made self-aware, recognizing its own mutant nature but powerless to do anything but grow. Surreal and interesting stuff.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Most winners earn $1 to $7 per item sold.

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01 July 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Dinosaurs shirt design contest

Feeling prehistoric? Threadless‘s new Dinosaurs design competition is sure to be a blast from the very distant past. Here’s what they’re looking for…

Some had tiny arms and big hearts while others sported spikes, scales, long necks or wings. Dinosaurs may be extinct, but they still loom large in our imaginations. Who can forget a pack of velociraptors tearing apart a commercial kitchen in an attempt to feast on a pair of orphaned siblings? Or the dying words of Littlefoot’s mom, urging him to journey to the Great Valley and find his kind? Perhaps a classic scene of Godzilla laying waste to Tokyo comes to mind, or the early 90s TV series dreamed up by Jim Henson starring an anthropomorphic family of dinosaurs? (“Not the mama,” anyone?)

We welcome your take on the friendly or deadly, fossilized or fictional, large and in charge or tiny but terrifying. This design challenge is for paleontologists and artists alike: maybe you grew up reading picture books filled with dino taxonomies, digging for fossils in your backyard, and rocking a wide-brimmed field hat (even after it was cool). Maybe you proudly rep a slew of t-rex memes in sticker form on your laptop. This is your challenge. Give us your best dino designs, depicting your Triassic, Jurassic, Cretaceous or modern-day interpretations of prehistoric life.

This contest opens to entries on July 5th and ends on August 19th, 2019. One winner will earn $1000 cash and a $500 Threadless gift code. Also, all designers printed will earn $1 to $7 per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

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27 June 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Family Fun and more new this week

Family Fun by Gabriele Crotti (thecoolorange) won Threadless’s Vintage Vacation challenge, and it’s also my favorite print this week. It captures a classic 70s or 80s road trip well, with the familiar wood-paneled station wagon and luggage stacked on top. The background elements hint at an outdoorsy adventure, and the font choices echo the cozy but old-fashioned spirit set by the artwork. I love the choice of using just two ink colors in this design. The green ink and half-toning feel appropriately retro, and the bright orange draws your eye immediately to the disastrous fire. So good!

Herbivores in Carnivores by Cheok Siew Yen (BubuSam) is one heck of an all-over print, a crowd scene of animals that has them all facing the same way with a snack in hand like the audience in a huge stadium. But the twist is that what they’re eating can vary wildly- while most are chomping on huge slabs of meat, there are also vegetable-eaters scattered throughout snacking on things like bananas, trees, and even grass. This is a pretty funny predicament for the vegetarians, stranded as they are in a field of things that would find them delicious, but what makes it even funnier is that no one seems to notice. Every creature is perfectly content, no one is worries, and despite the commonness of their expressions, the wide variety of animals represented (and some color shifts within species) keep it feeling like every animal is unique.

Crazy Ants by Daniel Stevens (dnice25) is another great all-over pattern, though in a baffling move the t-shirt version only shows a small excerpt instead of the whole repeating scene. While the excerpt is still fun (the idea of ants doing all these zany things is pretty great), it loses the impact of the larger design, which creates the impression of a vast area of partying ants swarming to all kinds of pastimes and hobbies. There’s something special about the overwhelmingness of it, of seeing something exciting everywhere you look. Like the whole insect world is having an epic beach party. That said, with its sophisticated palette of black and yellow and action-packed cartooning, even the more limited t-shirt version manages to be a lot of fun.

Cute As Hell by Michael Buxton (DinoMike) is, as the title states, devilishly cute. Choosing the goat form was a brilliant move because animals are inherently so appealing, and very easy to ramp up the cuteness on. Making the goat’s eyes so massive definitely makes it adorable, but the size of the pupils also feels a bit sinister, like he’s hypnotizing the viewer. And is his little grin sweet, or deceptively lulling you in to a false sense of security? There’s a great spirit of playful danger, especially with the flame that dances between his horns. The font choice is smart as well, with clunky serifs that are reminiscent of hooves.

I Feel a Song Coming On by Airic (nuach) has a novel way of representing drunkenness, drawing the same elements on top of each other multiple times to represent unsteadiness and blurred vision. It’s an effective technique, and showing the very small amount of liquid still in the bottle is a good way of establishing that a lot of drinking has gone on. For me, the design brought to mind the song 99 bottles of beer on the wall because of the repetition, but could easily also indicate some karaoke or even a campfire sing-a-long.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Most winners earn $1 to $7 per item sold.

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