Archive | threadless

22 July 2008 ~ 3 Comments

New Shirt Monday at Threadless

The Deer Without A Heart by Kneil Melicano (roadkill3d) is my favorite shirt this week… and honestly, probably my favorite shirt in months. I’m a sucker for wildlife shirts with great lines, and this fits the bill nicely. The color treatment, though, is what makes it truly unique. They’re close to the colors we’d associate with the animals and nature (red of blood, watery blue, etc) except taken in a more surreal direction. The results are dreamy and intriguing, a definite buy for me.

Let’s Roll by Arbito is this week’s Select. I hadn’t realized until this printed, but in retrospect I guess there was a bit of a raver shirt deficit on Threadless. But, now that the situation has been rectified, they never need to print anything like this ever again. Ok, I’m exaggerating for effect. It really is pretty well done, just deeply unappealing to me. The character is too Yosemite Sam, maybe.

Someday by Lim Heng Swee (ilovedoodle) is about a baby bird dreaming of adulthood. The idea of a small animal with a shadow showing them as bigger isn’t exactly new, but what makes this fresh and cool is the style with which it is done. Instead of being a dull silhouette, the shadow is called out with lines to show feathering and features. Similarly, the expression on the tiny bird’s face expertly conveys his hopes. Great work.

Mister Mittens’ Big Adventure by Joe Van Wetering (speedyjvw) is a shirt that, at first probably creates a sense of deja vu in most t-shirt junkies- it’s the same basic concept as a DBH shirt. Honestly, though, the Threadless version is so much better, they’re almost a different species. Mister Mittens is more complex, more colorful and a lot more interesting. It’s not a buy for me (I wish the universe imagery was more subtle, and the lasercats theme isn’t to my liking) but it definitely is the current pinnacle of the genre.

Spaghetti & Me by Steve Wierth (Torakamikaze) looks to me like kind of a foodie take on the concept of someone connecting with their creation (robot/inventor etc). The idea is fun (and definitely appealing to a big demographic), but the style is where it really succeeds. The attention to detail on the spaghetti is amazing, and the chef also has a great deal of charm. My gripe here is with the ink color- the orange blends in with the shirt color too much for my liking, and I would prefer if the spaghetti man stood out just as much as the chef in his white coat.

Toy Traffic by Richard Lee (lofty softy) is a pretty neat shirt for kids and parents. The idea is that Hot Wheels sorts of small cars are driving up and down the shirt, leaving tire marks behind. My hang up here is that I’m kind of at a loss as to why any adult without kids would wear it- unlike a lot of other childhood toys, where the imaginative elements give them a life of their own, the cars are just… cars. Nothing about the design (or my own experience playing with toy cars) makes me think of them as amusing shirt fodder. So I feel that the main value here is in interaction, and unless a kid is actively combining real Hot Wheels with the shirt, it’s kind of lame.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Winners get $2000 cash and $500 in Threadless credit, with the possibility to earn more through Bestee awards, poster prints, and reprints.

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15 July 2008 ~ 1 Comment

Threadless Loves Democracy

Threadless Loves Democracy is a new competition at Threadless, seeking t-shirt designs that center on the concept of democracy itself. That means nothing about specific politics, officials or elections, just designs about the idea itself.

Unlike most other contests at Threadless, a total of three winners will be chosen. In addition to being printed on shirts, those designs will appear on Threadless prints and on Jones Soda bottles.

Enter by August 14th, 2008 for your chance to win the prize package, which includes nation-wide promotion of your design by Sappi Fine Paper (posters featuring your design will include your name and contact details), $300 gift certificate to Screwball Press, a Gocco P5 Silk Screening Kit!, complementary bottles of Jones Soda featuring each of the 3 winning designs, a signed copy of Jeff Howe’s Crowdsourcing book, your choice of any other 5 Crown or Crown Business books, an advance Copy of The Wuffie Factor by Tara Hunt, a $250 Apple Store gift card and the traditional Threadless prize of a $500 Threadless Gift Certificate and $2,500 in cash.

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15 July 2008 ~ 2 Comments

New Shirt Monday at Threadless

Strays by Glenn Jones (Glennz) is exactly the kind of slick-looking and hilarious work that the designer (and by extension Threadless) is known for. A take-off of the commonly seen alley-way scene where stray cats hide in every shadow, this surreal setting packs both small cats and larger prey- to the tune of lions, a giraffe and a rhino, among even more sets of unidentifiable eyes. The reason it works so well is that it centers on such a common experience- seeing something in the shadows- and twists it into a fantastic and funny image that captures the imagination.

Collection by Jimmy Tan W H finds the intersection of man-made elegance and nature. The chandelier’s flourishes intertwine with spider webs, and butterflies flit across the composition. A couple of factors really enhance the value- the angle of the chandelier (it has some motion to it, instead of being more dull and centered) and the fact that flock ink is used. While I’m not a fan of this design in particular (the subject matter doesn’t suit me and it feels really bulky on the shirt to me), I like that something like this was printed.

FeLines by Danielle Kerese (DaniellesGarden) is pretty much what it sounds like, a tight line drawing of cats, unified by the lines of their fur. It’s definitely good work, sure to appeal to both cat fans and appreciators of one color art. The color used ruins it a bit for me, though- that bright blue on asphalt doesn’t evoke anything catlike for me, and something about the color combination bothers my eyes, which keeps me from really looking at the lines. Great design, but the printing isn’t too my taste.

Fail by Budi Satria Kwan (radiomode) is another favorite of mine this week, as it excels in several ways. The concept is funny, using the idea of the cow that jumped over the moon (nostalgia appeal) and focusing on the one that didn’t quite make it. The style used is equally charming, using exaggeratedly fat cows (magnifying their leaping feat) and transparent patterns to great effect.

Human Thaumatrope by Federico Alejandro Saravi (VecinoLorenzo) is my least favorite kind of Threadless print, the kind that is wholly reliant on a gimmick. While thaumatropes are very cool, this shirt is not- for starters, no one will ever see it in action because people don’t spin that fast. Which means that if you wear this, you’ll be stuck explaining it to everyone you meet. Which is too bad, because it had some potential to be at least a little cool- the problem is, the style of the two sides doesn’t match at all. The bird side is acceptable, if a bit clip art-y, but the cage side is unbelievably rough.

Precious Cloth by Fumi Nakamura (miniaturemouse) is this week’s Select. Firstly, I love that the artist took advantage of the ability to custom-design a shirt color- I enjoy the variety that adds to Threadless’s offerings. The design itself is unique as well, appearing to be a sort of illustrated collage. The strength is in how the elements interact, like the ribbon that transitions into arms and the floral pattern that overflows from the sleeve. Cool and interesting work, a great choice for a Select.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Winners get $2000 cash and $500 in Threadless credit, with the possibility to earn more through Bestee awards, poster prints, and reprints.

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07 July 2008 ~ 5 Comments

New Shirt Monday at Threadless

Training by Michael Valadares Ferreira (Bisparulz) is my favorite shirt of the week- although it’s working in the very familiar territory of cute monster designs, the style and the humor make it a stand out for the genre. Part of what works for me is how the reality of the situation is unclear- because of the style used, I wondered if the city was real or also a toy like the monster’s dolls. The huge size on the shirt also works really well in conveying the enormity of the creature, yet the green on green color palette keeps it from being overwhelming. Great work.

Piggy Board by Preston Haynes (Merboy) was selected as the winner of the Human Giant Loves Threadless Good Old Fashioned Fun themed contest. I’m pretty fond of the style it’s drawn in- the spare use of color and the heavily lined patterns look great. I’m not totally sold on the design though- since the concept is so much about movement, I wish there was a better sense of motion in the piece (even the placement, dead center on the shirt, contributes to making it very static). The other complaint I have is more subjective- I just don’t find this very funny. At best it’s maybe a bit amusing, but I think the entire concept of a skateboard without wheels is too convoluted to really get a good laugh.

Rain In Spain by Dylan Martorell (nalyd) is this week’s Select. And to me, this is a great example of why Selects have the potential to be so awesome- the artist adapted his style to the medium well and chose an off-beat subject matter that, while unlikely to score well in the general competition, makes for a cool, interesting shirt. The linework is fun and gives life to some really nice creatures (the spider is my favorite), and the gradient looks hot on the printed shirts.

I’m Not Afraid Of The Dark is a slogan by Dan Maltzman (Maltzmania). And as with a lot of Type Tees, I’m not a fan. The trouble is that its entire value lies in one quick joke- and even worse, the joke isn’t apparent unless you’re in both lighted and darkened areas, allowing both messages to be seen. In the dark, the I’m Not Afraid text is hidden and the Hold Me text glows. To me, even if I saw both versions, I wouldn’t laugh or be all that amused by it. It just feels like an old joke dressed up with a more modern printing effect.

All I Need by Thomas De Santis (Montro) is a shirt with a ton of pretend pockets on it. In the pockets are all kinds of things, ranging from spectacles to a crab. I’m not a trompe l’oeil fan in general, so maybe I’m coming into this a bit prejudiced, but… I sort of don’t understand the appeal. The pockets don’t look that realistic, so it’s not a true illusion sort of thing. And unless I’m missing some sort of symbolism or reference, it looks like a fairly random collection of items (I thought at first it would all be things that played on the idea of pockets or were used in pocket metaphors, but I don’t think that is the case). I think the heart of it is, I’d rather wear a shirt with twelve actual pockets than twelve pretend ones… but neither of those shirts is one I’d be likely to bother purchasing.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Winners get $2000 cash and $500 in Threadless credit, with the possibility to earn more through Bestee awards, poster prints, and reprints.

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30 June 2008 ~ 1 Comment

New Shirt Monday at Threadless

Field Study 01 by Rick Crane (The Paper Crane) is my favorite shirt of the week, a slick, colorful collection of birds. It takes advantage of the wildly differing silhouettes of birds to identify specific types and then uses color to unite them all. The specific colors used bring to mind a sunset for me, and that combined with the motion of the birds flying away makes this piece thought-provoking, capturing the fact that some of these birds might not stay around much longer. The only flaw I see is a couple of typos in the names of the birds- which is very unfortunate, I’m surprised no one checks for these things before they’re printed. Still, it’s a minor enough detail that it doesn’t ruin the shirt.

City Of Freaks by Andy Rementer (andyandy) is this week’s select, taking its cues from the underground comics of the seventies. A group of diversely colored and drawn characters walks around the shirt (front and back print), defined with clean lines and solid colors. The real value here is in the creativity of the characters- each one has something interesting and totally unique that draws the eye and ignites the imagination. My favorite is probably the spotted dog with the hat, but there’s a lot to like.

Laundry Monkie by Wenceslao Almazan (walmazan) uses superglow ink to create a shirt with two distinct moods. In daylight, an industrious monkey endeavors to clean up his laundry room, taking a moment to play a bit (he is a monkey, after all). But at night, the scene is silhouetted by the moon and it all takes on a more serious look- instead of posing with a laundry basket, the monkey hangs perilously from the spire of a skyscraper. I love the way the design represents both the reality of play and the way it appears in the imagination.

Where The Heart Is by Chris Thornley (Raid71) is the best implementation of the “home is where the heart is” theme I’ve ever seen, using an artistic dashed line style to convey the warmth and security of home. A couple of details kick the level up even higher- the arterial trees and the van Gogh-inspired sky definitely made me eager to take another look around the composition. Definitely some amazing artistry.

Delimitating Macrocosms by Budi Satria Kwan (radiomode) is a parallel universe cartoon, showing how one scene might exist in other realities. It’s mildly funny, but not really a stand-out. I think the main issue is that this sort of cartoon has been done so many times- nothing about this particular version makes the joke feel fresh. A more stylized approach or a different (non-panel) format might have made it seem more unique. Beyond this, it’s very rectangular, not something that I think looks too great when worn. You have to be up close and personal before the jokes are clear, and even once there it’s not that humorous.

Le Romantique by Matheus Lopes (mathiole) is a gorgeous watercolor-influenced shirt, perfectly expressing the anticipation and hope of the moment. It’s also a great use of the shirt, with the flowers beginning on one side and the figure on the opposite side. What especially makes this work is the feeling of discovery as you view the entire design- your experience starts to mirror that of the protagonist. I also like the addition of the hummingbird, which is a nice bit of semi-reality in an imaginative scene.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Winners get $2000 cash and $500 in Threadless credit, with the possibility to earn more through Bestee awards, poster prints, and reprints.

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24 June 2008 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless Loves True Stories

Threadless has launched another Loves competition, centering around True Stories. The winner could be not only a shirt, but also the cover of Fray’s next volume (which will include stories with a “sex and death” theme).

Enter before July 23rd, 2008 for your chance to win the prize package, which includes a subscription (and two guest subscriptions) to Fray quarterly, $150 in Blurb scrip (redeemable for professional-quality books), Autographed Stephen Toblowsky’s Birthday Party DVD, an outgoing voicemail message recorded by Stephen Toblowsky, an autographed Stephen Toblowsky’s Birthday Party poster in addition to the customary Threadless prize of $2000 cash and a $500 Threadless gift certificate.

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23 June 2008 ~ 1 Comment

New Shirt Monday at Threadless

Cake Is Awesome! by Matt “The Cake Comrade” Palmer (bananaphone) is cute, simple, and most importantly a lot of fun. The cake rocker’s frosting takes on the look of disheveled hair, and the lightning lets you know that he’s serious about the level of awesome. I’m a little torn on the shadow (it looks pretty dark in the product pics), but otherwise it’s very solid.

Lost City by Guillaumit is this week’s Select, a collection of solid shapes that looks both like eastern architecture and a cat-like face. Something about the bright colors and surreal imagery makes me think of this as what the best eighties video game that never happened might have looked like. Definitely a favorite of the Selects I’ve seen lately, it is both interesting and wearable and it fills the space of the shirt very well.

Cooking With Friends by Kat Moon (steamedbun) shows two chef bears who literally cook their pals. The idea is reasonably cute (particularly the penguin stuffed into a measuring cup), but the style is what makes it a winner. Instead of relying solely on the smoothly curved shapes, the animals are given a burst of personality and dimension with some textured lines and uneven edges to show fur. The shirt color choice, though, was a disappointment to me- I think by using a shirt color so close to the coloring of the ink, this design lost all its visibility at all but the closest viewing distances.

Keeping Up With The Boneses by Ryan Alamillo (ryeofcali) is line art at its best, featuring a collection of framed portraits of skeletons. The arrangement of images is nice, with different shapes and sizes in close proximity to each other. But of course, the composition really sings in close up, where you notice all the fun details (the skeleton cat clock is especially nice). The cracks in the walls are a great detail that help to establish an environment for this wall.

I’m Waiting For You In The Rain by Yeoh Guan Hong (yeohgh) is innovative in the way it uses the falling rain to define the shape of the main character. The figure is further described with some bright orange illustration that calls out a few more defining features. I love that this got printed, because it relies only on art instead of on cuteness or pop culture references. This is the kind of visual experimentation I’d like to see more of.

Making Mythology by Jason Sho Green is a great idea (I think everyone has wondered what had to happen for mythical creatures to exist) that is very charmingly illustrated. Unfortunately, I’m not sure it’s a great fit for the medium- the six drawings don’t feel connected to each other, and they don’t fill the shirt in an interesting way. I think a different way of arranging the idea on the shirt would have been beneficial. Strangely, this would be a pretty nice arrangement for a zip-up hoodie, so I was disappointed that it wasn’t offered as a purchase option.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Winners get $2000 cash and $500 in Threadless credit, with the possibility to earn more through Bestee awards, poster prints, and reprints.

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