Archive | design by humans

25 November 2007 ~ 0 Comments

New This Week at Design By Humans

New week, new shirts at Design By Humans. It’s a great batch of tees, and there’s a great deal on them running until midnight tonight- if you buy $75 of shirts, your account will be credited with $25 for your next purchase. Very neat! I’ve also got some coupon codes, each good for 15% off: R6ZZW2 (good until November 28th) and EL3HBQ (good until December 3rd). If you’ve got a coupon code, post it in the comments and I’ll list it at the top of my next Design By Humans post.

Edword’s epic Fang & Claw shows a cobra and a mongoose locked in a fight for survival. The textures and shading are really intricately done, and it works to draw the viewer right into the action. It’s my favorite of the week, but also the one that I’m most curious about seeing in person- I can’t decide whether I think the sheen on the ink adds dimension, or whether it might distract from all the detail work. Either way, this is a pretty above-average shirt, though.

Viking Voyage is a shirt design by Ky11, who is quickly becoming one of my favorite shirt designers. His other shirt at DBH, The Birdman, shares a few elements with this one- the wave patterning and the ragged shading that darkens the lines near the characters’ faces. It gives his shirts a unique look and a lot of personality. I love the addition of embroidered waves in this one, too- it adds some great texture to the piece.

Flower by a_mar_illo doesn’t look like any shirt I’ve seen before, which I intend as a huge compliment. The lines are crazy-complicated and your eye almost gets lost in it. But it’s a fun journey, and there are some nice details that you discover along the way. The color palette is unique as well, which I think tends to be a staple of a_mar_illo’s t-shirt work. Good stuff.

kbauthus’s Day of the Dead is probably the most girl-friendly skull shirt the world has ever seen. It is a masterpiece of decorative line that remains true to its source of inspiration by looking good enough to eat. Really nice use of high density ink, too.

The interaction of solid color and pattern is the focal point of Buddha by Lexane. I think the gloss highlights make it, though- they make the snake’s faces pop from the shirt, which in combination with the plaid pattern of their bodies gives a sense of movement to the scene. The movement is a great contrast with the serenity of the rest of the design.

Overall, a pretty nice selection. I’m enjoying the variety in style and subject manner, but I’d love to see some more variation in shirt color- the DBH line seems pretty heavy on black, asphalt, light blue and white at the moment, I know I’d appreciate some brighter colors in the mix.

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18 November 2007 ~ 2 Comments

New This Week at Design By Humans

Design By Humans has a great new selection of shirts this week, and luckily I’ve also got a couple of coupon codes to save everybody some cash: GKA55K (probably good until November 23rd or so) and 8B6S0Z (good until November 24th). Use them and save 15% on your order. If you’ve got your own coupon code, post it in the comments and I’ll mention it at the top of the next Design By Humans post I write.

Projectile Rainfall by suceda is definitely my favorite of the week- I love the sketchy quality of the lines. The characterization of the cloud is great as well, and really conveys the idea that this poor cloud is so ill. The message that in its sickness, the cloud contributes to the health of so many aspects of the planet (wildlife, trees, the ocean) is an interesting one. The cloud is actually an appliqué, which I think would boost this even more in person.

Interlocking Lives, Lines and Transit Lanes by polynothing is… basically the same shirt as another shirt by this artist, This Is What We Call a Life Drawing at Threadless. Unfortunately, I hated it both times. They aren’t bad drawings, exactly, they’re just boring. I can see how a shirt in this style could be nice looking, if the color scheme were done well and if some elements popped from the design more but as is, I just do not care for this.

Ride Captain Ride by adamwhite has so much chaos in the composition. From the strong crashing of the waves to the precarious perch of the ship to the strong vertical of the sea monster (complete with a tear of effort), this shirt is a snapshot of a single moment- the moment right before everything explodes into movement.

Midnight Hunt by ryozilla is a completely different image depending on what distance you view it at. From far away, it is a gorgeously colored nature scene. But up close, there’s added depth- tiny humans are scattered among the leaves, hiding from the birds that prey on them. It’s one of the strongest illustrations that I’ve seen in a competition like this, and I’m glad it got a print.

Circular Reasoning by jsheldon is probably my second favorite of the week. I’m usually a fan of anything with some strong geometry to it, but this one is more than that. It has a great sense of balance and motion to it that prevents your eye from dwelling in any one area for too long. The foil and high density inks used probably add a cool, textural element in person as well.

Overall, a nice, solid week of prints at Design By Humans. There are definitely a couple of shirts that will have to find their way to my collection at some point.

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11 November 2007 ~ 2 Comments

New This Week at Design By Humans

There’s a great selection of new shirts this week at Design By Humans. I’ve also got some coupon codes: FP207N, which expires on November 21st, 2007 and DRHXSD, which expires on November 22nd, 2007. If you have a coupon of your own, post it in the comments and I’ll put it at the top of my next Design By Humans post.

Mine Shaft 4 – Gold Found by bortwein is my favorite of the week. It depicts a series of skeletons embedded in the number 4, which represents the mine shaft. The 4 is crossed out, which adds to the sense of this being a forbidden area. There’s also some really fantastic use of foil- the uncrossed-out area of the 4 is done in silver foil, while the one nugget of gold is gold foil. The small size of the nugget (in comparison to the huge skeletons and X mark) makes this really interesting. The X marks the spot, but there’s a high cost for this small treasure.

Destroy Coral by huebucket is a beautiful piece. It is kind of a visual rumination on a woman and the sea, with parts of each converging to form a new image. The figure’s hair takes on the appearance of seaweed, and her tears become bubbles exhaled by the fish. I love the strong vertical created by the anchor, and the splash of red in the anchor’s rope does a good job of adding interest and connecting the two halves of the image.

Viscera by valorandvellum grabbed my attention with its color palette. The concept behind it got my imagination running as well- the bear has an image of a gorgeous landscape within him, which he breathes out in colorful embroidery. The contrast of the embroidered trees with the drawn texture of the bear and the solidness of the interior landscape is really neat- it makes the landscape within the bear look like the most real part of the scene. Awesome!

Night Shepherd by shiroshock is a really fantastic drawing, and also a great fit for the t-shirt medium. There’s a lot of chaotic, expressive linework in the main character, which is a nice contrast with the bold, irregular stripes of the crown and stag. It stands out in the Design By Humans collection as being more roughly constructed than the rest, and I’d love to see more things like this been printed.

The Control Room by Bramish is I think the largest size print that I’ve seen at DBH- the print wraps around to cover almost all of the width of the shirt. It’s a great technique, made even better by the transformation that happens in the image as it turns around the shirt. On the front, you see the control panels. On the back, you get to see the wiring that makes those complicated controls function. With all the intricacy of line, its easy to forget that it was all done in just one color. Very cool.

Over all, a fantastic week- maybe even the best week yet. I’m considering a purchase on four of the five shirts this week, which is insane. I almost hope that next week sucks, just so that I can save some money!

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04 November 2007 ~ 3 Comments

New This Week at Design By Humans

This week’s Design By Humans coupon code is 8SW8DK, good for 15% off until November 9th 2007. Feel free to post your own codes in the comments, I’ll list them off at the top of next week’s post.

For Sale By Owner by barakhardley is my favorite of the week. It’s a great use of a large print, and the facial expression is just perfect. The texture of the hair and beard was a nice addition as well.

Welcome to Brazil by ninhol, a colorful collage of some of the things that define Brazil. Ninhol’s style is all over this one, especially apparent in the swooping lines, treatment of the hands, and the color palette. There’s a back shoulder graphic of the design’s Republica scrolls, which is a great touch.

Mexican Standoff by fatheed is a cool shirt that just looks better the closer you get- the detail is amazing, and they’ve even used a suede ink on several elements. There’s also a lot of depth in the scene, as pretty much every character is both a hostage and an aggressor (no small feat, since there are almost twenty figures in the mix). This is also mirrored by the two dogs facing off (which is my favorite part).

The Source by dhectwenty has a great structure- the colors left in the hummingbird’s wake wrap around the back of the shirt. The droplets around the bird also contribute to the sense of motion. What stops me from being into this one, though, is the color palette- I just don’t like those colors together, and especially not on navy blue. But color sense varies pretty wildly from one person to the next, so I might be alone on that one.

Descending Falls by Castle is totally unique, and the printing technique takes it to a whole new level. High density ink is used for the falling lines while water based ink is used on the figures, giving them a real sense of being trapped. The specific poses of the characters are excellent, full of chaos.

Overall, a really nice week. All these shirts stand out from the kind of thing other stores are doing, and they’re totally wearable. I think DBH will be hard-pressed to choose a Shirt of the Week from this bunch, because they’re all contenders.

Design By Humans is an on-going t-shirt design competition. Winners can earn up to $3500, plus residuals. Interested parties should submit their work here.

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28 October 2007 ~ 0 Comments

New This Week at Design By Humans

Use code EKMKME before October 31st to get a 15% discount on your Design By Humans order. And if you have your own discount code, feel free to post it in the comments.

My favorite shirt this week was The Ultimate Shirt by Moss, but it was a difficult choice since there were so many cool designs. Just about every t-shirt cliche is featured (I’m especially partial to the smoking unicorn, but it’s all great). The style (reminiscent of the doodlings a high schooler might do in his notebook) kicks things up a notch. Totally solid.

Madre Tierra by Ninhol depicts a mother nature figure who is created from landscape patterns and homes. It has a great folk art feel to it, and the colors really pop on the brown shirt. The sheen accents (judging from the close up images, it looks like they’re used on the pink areas of the shirt) probably add a lot to this one in person, as well.

Goodbye Old Friend by Sonmi is the story of the sun mourning his friend, a snowman. The style is amazing, as there is a real sense of sorrow and weariness in the sun’s eyes. The color palette is another huge plus- it has an antique aura to it, which adds to the viewer’s understanding of the sun’s plight. He’s probably said goodbye to many more snowmen since the image was created. And, you know they were totally tight because they have such similar taste in hats! Poor sun.

Migrate South by cpdesign is one of the better penguin/flight shirts I’ve seen. The characterization of the penguin is interesting, as he’s full of grim determination (instead of hopeful, the direction most of these shirts seem to take). The attention paid to the background is also a selling point because I like the way simple bird outlines haunt the background and the angle of the clouds provides some additional visual interest.

Dead Pony by cbuchholz shows a Ford Mustang being ripped apart by vultures. It’s a cool visual even if (like me) you aren’t enough of a car person to get the car/horse pun. While some people in the comments are up in arms about the addition of splatters, I actually disagree- I think they add a grittier feel to the piece. It just looks like more of a finished product to me than it did previously. I’m considering purchasing this, and before it wasn’t even on my radar.

Overall, this was a fantastic week- some really top-tier artists were printed, and there was a nice variety in style and technique. Also, congratulations are in order for akoelle, whose Squid Count was named Shirt of the Week.

Remember, Design By Humans is an on-going t-shirt design competition. If you’ve got a great shirt concept, submit it for your chance at up to $3500 (plus residuals).

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21 October 2007 ~ 3 Comments

New This Week at Design By Humans

Some people left comments on previous entries with coupon codes for Design By Humans, so I’ll pass those along: XV8E16 is good for 15% off until October 22nd, and HWC036 is good for 15% off until October 29th. Enjoy!


Squid Count by akoelle is easily one of the more interesting shirts I’ve seen lately. The juxtaposition of the squids with numbers is fun (and a natural fit, given the numerous limbs squids boast) and the artwork itself is expressive and beautiful. This one is seriously testing my “no white shirts” rule.


Bow Master by skulldaggery is kind of a weird one for me. I like the idea of it, and ribbons swirling around other elements is something I tend to find visually appealing. But somehow, this one just leaves me cold. It’s not a reflection on the artist at all- I liked his Rocket Scientist design, and would have preferred to see a print on that one.

statueMan by theunenthusiast stands out from the rest of the shirts offered by DBH, which is always neat. I like the intricacy of the patterns and the main character has a lot of personality. Since this artist’s Robit was my early favorite for the $5000 competition, I’m glad to see him get a print.


tomburns’s We Are All In This Alone was my other favorite this week. It looks great, and there’s some meaning to be had as well. The cards that the characters hold in front of their faces are blank, but reaching. Their blind fumbles come close to the others in the scene, but never quite hit them. They’d have to drop the cards to finally make contact.

Futureshock by hogboy features an excellent use of both the front and back of the shirt. The front carries an image of the futuristic device assembled, and the back has the exploded diagram. The color scheme also raises the level of this design- those shades of blue are really attractive, and have a certain blueprint-y subtext.

Overall, a really nice week. I’m glad to see such artistic work being printed.

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14 October 2007 ~ 0 Comments

New This Week at Design By Humans

Design By Humans had a bit of a theme going with their shirts this week, titled Halloweek. I’m a sucker for themes, so it definitely appealed to me- especially since these aren’t shirts that are exclusively for Halloween. They’ve got that spooky element, but still wouldn’t be out of place during the rest of the year.

My favorite this week was unquestionably Forbidden Platypus by Wandering BErt. It’s a very neat combination of images- Robby the Robot carrying a platypus, the most ridiculous of all animals, instead of a beautiful woman. The concept grabbed me instantly and made me picture what could have happened to lead to this moment.

Guard Your Grill by eskimokiss is a great use of both an oversize print and gold foil. I wouldn’t have guessed that overused skull imagery could look fresh to me, but it totally does here. The execution is top-notch, handily setting it apart from a sea of similarly-themed shirts.

Vintage Spirits by danr really sings with the vibrant ink they’ve used. While I liked the original submission, the newly vivid colors gave this one new life. It’s a gorgeous illustration as well (I wish it were shown up close on the shop page, because the details are on point). Danr’s on a bit of a roll at DBH- of his four submissions, this is the second of his that has been printed.

Pink Shirt by jublin has a seriously nice color palette- the pinks look great, and the unusual drawing style gives the sensation of being trapped in a hideously cute nightmare. I have no idea what’s going on in this one, and I like it that way.

Voodoo! by LucaT is the only one this week that I’m not really sold on- I loved it in voting, but the changes made in production don’t really work for me. Instead of a charcoal tee, it’s been printed on navy blue. The pink was brightened, and there is much less distressing. The new colors, in particular, just don’t hit my eyes quite right- I find that shade of pink on navy blue to be very uncomfortable to look at. It’s possible that it looks better in person, but that’s not something I’d risk a purchase on at this point.

Overall, though, it was a pretty great week of shirts. There was a nice variety in imagery (if not in shirt color). If you’re considering a purchase, try coupon code YP1B6M for 15% off.

Remember, Design By Humans is an on-going t-shirt design competition. If you think your design has what it takes, enter it for your chance at up to $3500 (plus residuals).

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