Archive | threadless

18 December 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Au Revoir and more new this week

Au Revoir by Norman Duenas (fhigi25) is my favorite Threadless print this week. The clock element comes through the most clearly for me first, with the butterfly bursting through its flowery borders as if to dramatically underline how swiftly time flies. But right after that, the compass elements and galleon gain ground. Now it’s not just time passing, but also space- the story is that of a long journey and trying to find your way as your surroundings grow and change. The concept is strong, and the detail of the illustration (especially the balanced line of the anchor and skull) helps make it a piece that gives you a lot of moments to discover and enjoy.

Nah. by Rodrigo Leonardo Batista Ferreira (rodrigobhz) takes a classic prank from the show The Office and takes it to the next level. Instead of a stapler in a jello mold, somehow Jim has squeezed an entire cubicle in there. It’s an enticing idea, because it’s both the most epic prank of all time and also a pretty great excuse for not getting anything done. You can imagine the gooey, bouncy feeling of reaching in to reclaim your chair. Plus, the likeness of the Jim character captured by this cartoon is dead-on, perfectly exaggerating his floppy hair, loose posture, and distinctive nose. Fans of the show are going to dig this one.

Summer Vibes by Pepe Rodriguez (ppmid) is a cute bit of cartooning, creating a very unique skeleton character. I like how completely joyful and cheery this guy is, right down to his retro sailor cap and blushing cheeks. The ice cream is happy as well, smirking and winking in reaction to the skeleton’s licks, and seemingly uncaring about his imminent demise. The combination of characters, one already dead and one currently being consumed, points towards a theme of enjoying yourself even if death is just around the corner. And if your skeleton still gets to eat ice cream, maybe the afterworld is pretty great!

Beware the Comment Section by Daniel Stevens (dnice25) won Threadless’s Fear design contest, and it’s easy to see why- public comments are modern horror of every day life, something people of all demographics universally find shocking and uncomfortable (though sometimes for very different reasons). Even better, the artist uses lettering that looks like it’s right out of a slasher movie, a bright burst of scrawled red words that drip like they’re written in blood. The horror ambiance is strong, and the sentiment is bound to strike a chord with most. Solid work.

R(AMEN) by kooky love (kooky love) has fun with puns, creating the familiar praying hands graphic out of ramen noodles. It’s cleverly done, with bold red bowls standing in as cuffs of a sleeve and chopsticks clutched between the hands to further the likeness and make the concept crystal clear. The intricate coils of the noodles are used to call out the hand’s fingers and even nails for a surprising level of detail, while ramen staples like spring onions, egg, shrimp and meat add interest and movement. I like that even the water splashing from each bowl is used as an opportunity to add to the story, directly referencing the shapes of the waves from the famous Great Wave Off Kanagawa.

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 December 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Romance design contest

Valentine’s Day may still be a ways away, but Threadless appears to be preparing early with their new Romance design competition. Here’s what they’re looking for…

Romantic gestures are some of history’s greatest hits. You know, Juliet standing on the balcony calling out for her lover as he silently (creepily?) listens below. Noah rowing Allie onto the lake just as the storm starts then they rekindle their romance while yelling at each other on the dock. Bert loving his rubber ducky so much he sings an entire song about it.

Hold up your boombox and bump your jams to the window of your lover’s soul in this design challenge for John Cusacks, Juliets, and Nicolas Sparks readers. We want your ooey-est, gooey-est romantic designs, dripping with cheese or smothered in affection. Show us the love between a beautiful slice of bread and hunk of cheddar (otherwise known as a grilled cheese sandwich). Get nerdy or mushy, literary or historic, but show us what makes your heart beat in scenes of love, true love or typographic displays of desire. Light some candles, pop the bubbly, grab a good bar of dark chocolate, and design challenge away!

This contest opens to entries on December 20th and ends on January 6th 2020. 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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11 December 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Tropical Toucan and more new this week

Tropical Toucan by Trabu (trabu) is my favorite Threadless print this week. I love it because it capitalizes on the actual flocking behavior of birds, and also their specific markings. Crowding them all into a small space is a great excuse to show transparencies and color shifts when forms overlap, and in the case of the toucan this corresponds remarkably well with the bird’s real appearance, from striped beaks to contrasting belly colors. The result is a wild mix of shapes in which each bird feels like a unique character, but also naturally leads the eye towards discovering the creature next to it. The basic shapes and soft textures give the benefit of abstraction, while the fact that the birds still read clearly also gives the benefit of some storytelling.

Log Off by Michael Buxton (DinoMike) makes a very clear statement in a punny way. The joke of making the “log” in “log off” a literal object is funny, but also has a secondary message- leave technology behind and get back to nature. The log feels absolutely solid and real compared to the flimsy structure of the laptop, even bright orange and colorful next to the drab black of the machine. It’s a great gag and a compelling thought.

Deep Space by Angoes25 (Angoes25) really turns the supposed emptiness of space on its head with this lush scene, surrounding a lone astronaut with brilliant blossoms, koi fish and constellations. One aspect I enjoy is that the scene feels so alien- we’re seeing objects and creatures in places they’re just not meant to be. I also like the way the fish, clearly swimming their way around the spaceman, invite you to think of space not as an absence of material but instead dark and mysterious like a body of water, possibly containing anything. Flowers bring life and a certain amount of fragility to the piece, while constellations and geometric shapes add complexity. If you like space and thinking about what’s possible, you probably like this.

Wild Wild Web by kooky love (kooky love) parodies the web browser error page shown when the internet is offline, displaying a pixel t-rex. Instead of creating an entirely prehistoric world for it to exist in, the art instead sets its sights squarely on the Wild West. I love that mix because it captures the outlaw feel of the early web, the sense that anything could be around the next corner and a new world was evolving before your eyes. Now that the spirit of the early web has largely gone the way of the dinosaur and the wilderness has been tamed in favor of walled-garden apps and corporate-owned social media, the Wild West analogy is even more apt.

Blue Jay by Rick Crane (ThePaperCrane) is the kind of stylized line drawing this artist is so well-known for, and it’s another masterpiece. While the look is inspired by minimalism, there’s no lack of depth to what’s happening here visually. The bird and his extended wing neatly cut the sun and landscape into quadrants, with each feeling distinct and interesting. The top half is framed by the sun, highlighting the curve of the wing below. Lines of the hills echo the contours of the birds face, with one hill even connecting seamlessly into the shapes of the wing’s feathers. It’s beautifully done, and irresistible to anyone who loves birds.

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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09 December 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Year design contest

Threadless has teamed up with the famous dictionary for the Merriam-Webster Word of the Year design competition. Here’s how they’re getting the word out…

To celebrate the end of 2019, we’re cooking up a design challenge in partnership with one of our fave (and nerdiest) organizations. Don’t miss out on crafting new designs inspired by language and the dictionary’s biggest event of 2019—Word of the Year! Check back on December 10 for the full challenge specs!

This contest opens to entries on December 10th and ends on December 23rd, 2019. One Grand Prize winner will earn $1000 cash, a $500 Threadless gift code, a Merriam-Webster Dictionary Gift Pack, and will be featured on Merriam-Webster.com. Second place will get $500 cash, and third place receives $250 cash. Also, all designers printed will earn up to $7 per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

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04 December 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Orange Cat and more new this week

Orange Cat by kooky love (kooky love) is my favorite Threadless print this week. I love the pure nonsense of it, combining a cat and a peeling orange for no other reason than that it’s fun and silly. Even better, the unraveling of the creature references Escher’s Rind piece and employs a level of detail and skill that is up to the challenge that imitating the optical illusion master invites. With a cheerful sprig of green leaf resting on its head like a hat and clear, beautiful eyes, the cat even manages to convey a demure, innocent personality. If you like a weird shirt, I can’t recommend this one enough.

My Little Submarine by Zhao Xiang (micronisus) creates a classic sight gag by placing a giraffe, neck and all, in the periscope of a submarine. It makes a strong connection between two similarly-shaped objects, and employs its lines smartly to do it. The giraffe is solid white (with just a scattering of light blue shapes on its neck to confirm its species), while the rest of the design plays out in white lines on blue fabric like a blueprint. This style allows the artist to give the submarine’s exterior a thick line (making it the second focal point after the giraffe), and also to full in some technical-looking detail at a lighter line weight that gives the vehicle the feeling of a real, working environment. If you look closely you’ll even spot a scarf and little cap on this submariner- the giraffe is in uniform!

Space Fungi by Joey Klarenbeek (joey_klarenbeek) strikes me as a design that is countering expectations to make an impact. Mushrooms are usually small, white or brown, and like to cover the forest floor like a sheet. So it feels interesting, even a bit shocking, to see them behaving so differently here- stock-straight in stem, blue in color, and visibly towering over the scene in a strong vertical line. It’s an alien experience, made even more so when you notice that these strangely acting shrooms are bursting out of an actual space helmet. Did they learn this from whatever poor soul wore the helmet before it ended up here, or have they merely been inspired? Either way, they’re headed for the sun. My one disappointment with this design is the placement- I think an off-center, side print would have emphasized the art’s oddball qualities and made an even bigger statement.

Eat the Rich by Rodrigo Leonardo Batista Ferreira (rodrigobhz) takes a popular anti-capitalist slogan and takes it to an amusing comic conclusion, slicing Scrooge McDuck like a Christmas ham. By using a cartoon character, and a famously miserly and ill-tempered one at that, the slogan remains playful and amusing, the kind of joke that would resonate with people of a wide variety of political persuasions. In addition to the strong concept, color is used very effectively. The red of the slogan is only used as the head interior and for dripping blood, a grisly choice that helps the art to read clearly and quickly even from a distance.

Plants are Friends by Sanja (odsanyu) pairs handwritten text and doodle style for a very sweet result. In a lot of artists’ hands, a slogan like “plants are friends” would have lead to faces on every blossom and leaves holding hands with stems. But I’m very charmed by the restraint shown here, which invites us to appreciate plants as they really are, not how we imagine them to be. I also like that the illustrations remain white and grey, letting the various green tones of the garments imply the plants’ full color. It feels like bits of a nature-lover’s sketchbook transferred to a tee.

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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03 December 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Dada design contest

Indulge in some nonsense with Threadless‘s new Dada design contest! Here’s what they’re looking for…

Fueled by disgust for the First World War, artists in Zurich protested by making anti-art art. Satirical and anti-bourgeois in content, their performances, poetry, collages, and art challenged the logic and aestheticism of modern capitalist society. Artists like Hugo Ball, Hans Arp, Marcel Duchamp, and many more rebelled against the traditional values that were held at the time, pushing the boundaries of logic and politics.

Join the art movement! Create dada-esque designs for this reason-defying challenge. Draw from sculpture, sound art, collage, literature, dance, and any other form that inspires you to design something altogether new. Blur the lines between mediums and mix up techniques. Layer photos and colors, cut and paste words, and break free from society’s expectations of art. Let humor and the spirit of art guide you on this anything-but-normal, dadaist pursuit.

This contest opens to entries on December 6th and ends on December 20th, 2019. 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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27 November 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Wakeup and more new this week

Wakeup by Tobe Fonseca (tobiasfonseca) is my favorite Threadless print this week. It’s simple but effective, contrasting the wide, round form of the coffee mug with the narrow, sharp lines of the heartbeat monitor. The message reads loud and clear- the injection of coffee immediately raised the heart rate. For the legions of people who rely on a morning coffee to wake them up in the morning, it’s a very relatable concept. And even better, it’s been expressed in a clean, one-color composition without any extra frills or distractions from the main story. Solid work.

Badass Cat by Joel Robinson (obinsun) stands out with its fat lines. Their thickness gives the art a unique character that softens the subject matter, making everything feel a bit overstuffed like a big, fluffy pillow. That means that even though this tough little cat literally sits with a skull and array of weaponry at his feet, you can’t help but want to give him a hug. With its use of simplified cartoon imagery and short dashed lines, it strikes me as a fresh, modern descendant of Keith Haring’s work.

Sushi Persian Cat by Chalermphol Harnchakkham (huebucket) puts a variety of cats into sushi rolls, with hilarious results. I think the concept is strong because, as most sushi involves fish, it’s easy to see a cat being curious (and hungry) enough to get mixed up in it. Each cat reacts a bit differently, some scared, others mad, or even just plain resigned to their new fate. The size difference between the cats and the food they inhabit adds a kind of absurdist charm. To me, this is the kind of cat shirt that appeals even to those who have no strong feelings about cats, because it’s more about a silly approach to sushi than something aimed squarely at pet owners.

Wrong Vacation by Elizabeth (Agimat ni Ingkong) is an especially cool vacation snapshot, imagining a futuristic, spacesuit-clad fellow taking a trip to the very distant past. While our lead character waves at the camera obliviously, dinosaurs of all shapes and sizes roar behind him and a volcano ominously puffs thick clouds of smoke. It looks crazy dangerous… but also kind of like the most amazing vacation ever? The vibrant colors of the background, especially that warm red, help the scene to come to life, and the fact that the traveller’s helmet obscures his face helps the viewer to imagine themselves as part of the story.

Grandma’s Territory by kooky love (kooky love) perfectly captures the odd status of many grandmas, cute and frail yet somehow also extremely fierce and impossible to defy. Personifying these qualities in an elaborately styled tiger with reading glasses captures the spirit of the paradox, and surrounding the creature with very grandmother-y, crafty, and homey things like flowers and cross-stitch lettering works well to soften (or at least camouflage) the tiger’s fangs. The slogan hits on the universal theme of grandmas wanting to over-feed their visitors, granting the design even more relatability and appeal.

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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