08 August 2019 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Napman and more new this week

Napman by Rodrigo Leonardo Batista Ferreira (rodrigobhz) is my favorite Threadless print this week. While a lot of designs have parodied this Batman wing logo over the years, this one immediately stands out from the pack by turning the character upside-down. It’s a perfect fit for the sleep theme, and also creates a nice order of discovery in its visuals, first letting the viewer see the Napman pun, and then the slumbering Batman, and finally the Zzz… detail that finishes the thought. The doodled feel of the art works with the spirit of relaxation inherent in the concept, though I do wish the typography on Napman was tightened up a bit to read more smoothly and fill the wings more completely.

Gourmet Boogers by Jey Kim (heyjey) won Threadless’s Gross challenge, and it’s easy to see why. The concept is definitely stomach-churning, but the heritage look of the illustration helps to keep the design surprisingly wearable. There’s a real artistry and delicacy to the drawing, totally unexpected for the subject matter but a smart way to imitate the branding of real gourmet products. I like that even the typography is hand-drawn, with just the slightest wobbling of letterforms to create that crafted look.

Bad Ass by Vincent Trinidad (vptrinidad021) is a blast of cool 80s new wave style. With its palm trees, pink tones and city skyline, it feels like it’s straight out of a retro Miami detective show. So I have to admit I was a bit surprised to see that it’s a reference to the show Stranger Things, which I think of as having a very different kind of 80s flavor, the 80s of suburban malls, arcades, and BMX bikes. Since I’m not up to date on the show (I enjoyed season 1 but never bothered to watch the rest) it’s very possible that the style choice makes sense in a way I’m not grokking. And it’s certainly well done! I love the us of the teal highlight in the face and the starburst highlight of the earring.

Made in Japan by Tatak Waskitho (skitchism) reframes Godzilla as a national product to be proud of. I like the ambiguity of it, the way it makes you wonder if they’re celebrating the destructive monster or the creative minds that brought it to life. It works because the idea of being proud of a national treasure that destroys cities and causes havoc is funny, like someone cheering on their own possible destruction. The typography, though, is definitely my favorite part of this design- I love the irregular heights of the letters, the horizontal line that crowns the J as a capital letter, and the slight italicizing of Japan, all of which give the lettering the feel of a hand-painted sign.

Earth, Air, Fire & Water by Rick Crane (ThePaperCrane) uses lines of uniform weight and varying color to create a rich landscape that fills two mirrored triangles. The triangles have a thicker weight and form a diamond shape together, reminiscent of the dial of a compass or an indication of above and below. Like the buttons on an elevator call panel, the top triangle has all the action above the horizon, mountaintops and clouds capped by a glowing sun, while the bottom has a placid expanse of lake and the low starting points of those peaks. It’s a gorgeous piece and does an excellent job of establishing a sense of height and scale.

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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