Archive | threadless

01 April 2020 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: 9 Lives and more this week

9 Lives by Joel Robinson (obinsun) is my favorite Threadless print this week. The style of the piece is perfect for the subject matter, rounding out all the forms into cuddly lumps that look like pillows. It’s soft and comforting, making it easy to see why even a death-adjacent dude like the grim reaper would succumb to these kitties’ charms. Even better, there are a lot of fun details in the piece that take the main joke a bit further, like the shocked cat noticing his owner’s scythe and the playful kitten batting at a toy mouse (maybe he takes after his owner!). Very fun!

Northern Lights by dandingeroz (dandingeroz) lives up to its title in spectacular fashion with not just a glimpse of those famous lights, but also the feel of the land they emerge from. I love the way the white shirt color is used to create a striding polar bear traveling through the darkened forest, matching the white of the moon that becomes the larger bear’s eye. In other places silhouetted trees poke in and out of the bear’s form, both serving as a wintery landscape and as an illusion of rough fur. It’s slick stuff, and those lights really do seem to dance before your eyes.

Waves by Mateus Quandt (mateusquandt) proves the versatility of black and white and simple geometric shapes, using this limited visual palette to express something typically seen with lots of bright color and organic lines. The line break does nice work of replicating the gentle crashing of waves, and there’s something neat about the way it starts to resemble piano keys. The sun is heavy and solid, its bulk emphasized by the way it is cut almost precisely in half by the water. But its rays are much lighter, and fade out delicately from the edges. I think those rays might have an even nicer balance if their solidity faded based on proximity to the sun rather than to the edge of the canvas, but it’s a relatively minor gripe.

The Wanderer by Francis Minoza (nicebleed) is a gorgeous space scene, rich with sandy dunes that evoke adventure just out of sight over the next hill. I love the almost liquid curves of the landscape, and how warm the shades of orange and gold look together. It’s a smart move to keep the lone astronaut nearly in the shadows, as his size and placement help him to feel small and lost in this exotic place. I’m very intrigued by the silver-y colors of the ringed planet at the edge of the horizon, which creates some ambiguity of whether it’s a planet at all… or maybe some kind of mysterious craft, crashed in the sands ahead. Awesome to see a piece combine great art with great storytelling.

Blobfish Cuddle Party by Aaron Thong (agrimony) finds cuteness in an awkward animal. Blobfishes are strange-looking animals, with wide mouths, big noses, and an over-all melted appearance. I like the way this design leans into that, and lets this group of fish melt into each other in a giant snuggle. Instead of a gross deep sea fish, they seem like friendly, lazy creatures- the sloth of the sea, maybe. And by placing the art on a pink shirt, the fish seem less creepily human-featured and become more pleasantly cotton candy colored, like if Jigglypuff experienced an awkward stage in his development.

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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30 March 2020 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Memphis Design t-shirt design contest

Think retro 80s looks for Threadless‘s new Memphis Design t-shirt design competition. Here’s what they’re looking for…

A truly hot mix of plastic, color, and abstract, asymmetric shapes and squiggles, the Memphis Design style epitomized the look of the 1980s. Originally created by an Italian design and architecture firm called The Memphis Group, the movement manifested itself in a wide array of bold, postmodern artworks, furniture, fabrics, ceramics, glass, metal objects, and even household items. The style was once called “a shotgun wedding between Bauhaus and Fisher-Price,” by a design columnist*, and yet was heavily collected by the late, great David Bowie.

So gather your neon, pastel, and primary colors to create a design in true Memphis style. Revive this postmodern aesthetic with chunky geometric shapes, squiggles, and peculiar all-over-print patterns that the Starman himself would swoon over. Whether you lean into pure ‘80s color schemes or create your own retro appeal, be sure to explore how different shapes and colors can fit together or how one repeated shape becomes an ideal background for your design. It’s time to let symbols, shapes, and color do the talking as you give us your Memphis best.

This contest opens to entries on April 3rd, 2020 and ends on April 17th. One winner will earn a $500 Threadless gift code. Also, all designers printed will earn up to $7 per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

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25 March 2020 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Hawkins and more new this week

Hawkins by Douglas Evangelista (douglasstencil) is my favorite Threadless print this week. It’s a gorgeous design with its colorfully striped sunset sky and collection of lush, silhouetted trees. The kind of piece that is sufficiently good-looking as to appeal to even those who aren’t in the pop culture loop. Not that it’s likely to be a problem, given the immense popularity of Stranger Things. And I think this piece does capture some fundamental elements of the series, from the retro 80s setting to the element of nature and even a sense that those kids on bikes, though united in their friendship, are up against some tall odds in this big, wild world. While I think the design could be improved a bit with more reference to the monsters and the upside-down, it’s an excellent piece as-is.

Broken by Benji (Benjidojo) is certainly relatable. The egg’s posture and facial expression scream with disappointed apathy, perfectly capturing the feeling of a dramatic failure. His arms and legs splay like he’s making a snow angel, completely resigned to his new position on the floor and doing nothing to get back up. The shell is cracked into such small pieces, it does seem like it would be impossible to put back together. Well-made, and I like the way the brighter yellow of the yolk stands out on the yellow shirt.

Match Made in Hell by Cody Weiler (csweiler) gives a matchbook new context by placing a message and images of hell on the cover. It’s a clever twist, transforming an everyday item into something unusual and dangerous. There’s something energizing about the idea of holding in your hands something so powerful, especially since small flames are so common (candles, lighters, etc) that they’ve lost their mystique. This shirt is a reminder that even the smallest match has the potential to have a massive effect.

Catatonic by sebastian (sebasebi) is a design I previously enjoyed seeing in a Shirt.Woot derby, and I’m glad to see it printed here. The cat skull is a great focal point, with sharp fangs, surprised eyes, and a heart-shaped nose. But what makes this piece really special is the swirling of the snake. Its ribboning and coils are suggestive of the actual movement of the creature, with just enough scale texture hinted at to make it come alive. The flick of the tongue is a nice touch, kind of a loose, floppy counterpoint to the snake’s precision. All-in-all, a fun design that makes the most of both one ink color and street art style.

Comfort With Friend by Flostitanarum (Flostitanarum) has a dreamy ambiance, with unusual color choices and an arrangement of elements that makes more sense emotionally than literally. I mean, who wouldn’t want to bury their face in the fur of a tiger? This particular animal, with its chunky proportions, feels more like a pampered house cat than a wild predator. Even his green coloring feels mellow, with long, loose stripes that could be mistaken for stretch marks. Meanwhile, the human figure barely even looks conscious- their entire face is a blur that fades into distant stars and constellations. Is this what it would feel like to become one with the wild?

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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23 March 2020 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Small design contest

Bigger isn’t always better, or at least that’s the theory behind Threadless‘s new Small design competition. Here’s what they’re looking for…

Play with scale, get smart with size, and show dimension in designs that celebrate life’s little joys. Good things come in small packages, and even small armies are mighty. Make a statement with typography and design that champions the smallest sizes! Draft pint-sized designs that defy expectations and wow audiences. We believe tiny art can stand out. See the world from a different viewpoint, and create art inspired by size in this design challenge for the tall and small alike.

This contest opens to entries on March 27th, 2020 and ends on April 10th. One winner will earn $1000 cash and a $500 Threadless gift code. Also, all designers printed will earn up to $7 per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

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19 March 2020 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Urban Jungle and more new this week

Urban Jungle by Vincent Trinidad (vptrinidad021) is my favorite Threadless print this week. It’s one of those concepts that immediately captures the imagination by taking the everyday and making it fantastic. Who wouldn’t dream of seeing exotic creatures slumbering on the living room floor? Another fun aspect of the piece is the way it emphasizes the ways we bring the natural world into our homes, emphasizing the texture of the wood floor and highlighting the giant leaves of the houseplants. In a way, these zoo visitors are just the next step in a process we’ve already started.

Here Comes Trouble by 5 Eye Trouble by Maria Filar (mfilar) has a lot of retro charm with its loose, fluid looking text and faded back color palette. It’s exactly the kind of thing a savvy shopper would love to discover at a vintage clothing store, an item with the style of the past but a look that still feels fun and fresh today. The slight waver of the rainbow’s lines helps the art to appear handmade, though this illusion suffers a bit from the fact that every “e” in the design is identical in shape (and unfortunately, this is a phrase with a lot of e’s, making it hard to overlook). A choice that really works, though, was the decision to pile two clouds on top of each other- it puts the art off-balance in a way that feels authentically troublesome.

The Scream of Pain! by Raffiti (Raffiti) gives the famous painting new context by adding in another pop culture phenomenon, the Lego brick. Stepping on a Lego has a reputation for being one of the most painful things you can do, so it feels right that it would provoke this sort of legendary reaction. The artist also does a good job of using a style similar to the original, but simplified in a way that helps this piece to read more like a cartoon. The uneven pupils are especially effective.

Social Anxiety Secret Society by Aaron Thong (agrimony) has a slick lockup of text and imagery, using a classic X in the center and circular shape that resembles an official badge. It’s a timeless sort of look, and one that would be a good fit for just about any subject matter. What makes me like the design, though, is how the icons are put together. Each is rounded to look extra comfy and safe, with soft pastel colorings that further create a sense of ease and safety. It’s enough to make you want to curl right up in that green sofa with some tea, a cat, and a good book.

Open Your Mind by RJ Artworks (rjartworks) uses doodle style to convey its message, which keeps things light and silly despite the exposed brain. It also helps that the brains don’t look much like brains, grey in color and with a shape more reminiscent of a bowl of thick oatmeal than a human organ. Instead, the pink color is strictly for the text, which leaps out from the brain in giant letters as though it, too, was tucked underneath the skeleton’s fancy cap. Nice, uncomplicated humor.

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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16 March 2020 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Affirmations design contest

Spread some cheer with Threadless‘s new Affirmations design competition. Here’s what they’re looking for…

A declaration of truth or empowering belief, affirmations assert powerful messages into the universe. Today is a good day. You are brave, strong, and fearless. You have everything you need to succeed. By saying, thinking, or repeating these ideas, some believe you manifest them as truths in your own reality.

We’re positive you’ll feel empowered by this affirmation-oriented design challenge. Make art featuring phrases that uplift, delight, and champion the audience. What message of hope do you wish to share with the viewer? From living in the moment to believing you’re enough, create designs that speak positive words of empowerment. We challenge you to thoughtfully pair typography and design for the betterment of others.

This contest opens to entries on March 20th, 2020 and ends on April 3rd. One winner will earn $1000 cash and a $500 Threadless gift code. Also, all designers printed will earn up to $7 per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

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12 March 2020 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Trash Love and more new this week

Trash Love by Michael Buxton (DinoMike) is my favorite Threadless print this week. I love the way the trash bag and raccoon relate to each other, arms layered one right over the other and both drawn with large eyes dominated by huge pupils. Despite their otherwise different shapes, this common ground makes them seem very alike. This isn’t an animal planning to rip the bag open and feast on its insides, it’s a creature who loves and values his food source (and trash that is, for its part, pleased to be needed and to contribute to the health of its pal. I have no clue what the text says, but I’m not sure I need to- the imagery speaks loudly enough on its own. Though it is nice to see (what I assume is) the message repeated, as that implies that the examples we’re shown should be seen as a goal to strive for.

Have a Nice Death by Pepe Rodriguez (ppmid) mixes up the classic figure of the grim reaper with a cheerful yellow smiley face. I like the way it adjusts the typical smiley, giving it a more playful, cartoony quality and adding character by making the yellow shape not perfectly circular. This choice gives the reaper personality rather than making him a symbol. It’s also a nice contrast with the sharp and shaded realism of the scythe above. The plain text slogan makes the concept even more clear, positioning death as inevitable, but not scary and not necessarily unpleasant.

Multi-Verse by Tristan (DeepSpaceTris) expresses the idea of multiverses through 3-D style. By staggering red, green and blue shapes, the artist simulates the look of three dimensional graphics, creating the impression that if the 3-D glasses were donned, the viewer would see letters and shapes jutting out at strange angles and showing different depths. Does it work? Who knows, I don’t have 3-D glasses and neither will most people who encounter the art. The important thing is that it looks like it would work, and even when seen without any 3-D apparatus the colors and spacings make the letters appear to dance a bit before your eyes.

Washington B.C. by Grant Shepley (Gamma-Ray) looks like the premise for an awesome B-movie, where dinosaurs are somehow back from the past and taking over our cities. Like if Jurassic Park was built somewhere really dumb, and the government that signed off on the permits immediately suffered the consequences. The style is well-crafted, giving the text a caveman feel and the sky heavy green-accented clouds that increase the drama. There are also some neat details to discover, like the soldier being chased by a T-Rex and the sheer number of pterodactyls peppering the sky. It’s a great action scenario for dinosaur and disaster movie fans, and maybe a bit comforting to the many who’d prefer an actual dinosaur in office to many of our current politicians.

Blue Dot by Ninhol (ninhol) gets a lot done with one ink color. Dark blue covers the oceans and provides outlines for continents, clouds, and a dreamy human figure who embraces the globe. There’s a feeling of comfort in the image, of protection and healing. By not defining some of the character’s body (the head remains open, the shoulder doesn’t connect), the human figure feels symbolic and spiritual rather than real. On the right shirt color, it might even look like the universe itself is reaching out to reassure an ailing planet. Good 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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