14 December 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: New this week

Reburied Treasure by David Soames and Nathan W. Pyle (davidfromdallas) makes for a neat tee, but it really sings in hoodie form. The enterprising dog sits on the front upper corner of the zipped hoodie, with the skull and crossbone filling the back. It reads really clearly as a smart parody of the skull and crossbones apparel we see every day, and both halves of the image are attractive and well-formed enough to not seem out of place even if seen singly. It’s a restrained, sophisticated piece with a lot of humor. As the title of the design implies, there’s also the deeper joke that the dog isn’t just burying a bone- he’s burying the bone of a Jolly Roger. They’re kindred spirits in a way, both dedicated to finding their respective treasures and then hiding them underground.

Origin by Philip Haragos (Haragos) uses a silly blue cartoon man (who looks straight out of vintage advertising) to poke fun at the absurdity of comic book superpowers. Most powers have extremely sketchy origins so it’s ripe for parody, and the artist’s just-so approach makes them seem even more ridiculous. For comics fans, it’s fun to identify each real hero. And for people who aren’t into the whole superhero thing, I can only imagine how funny it must be to discover that, yes, some of these actually exist. There’s a lot of charm in each image, making it a very endearing tee.

Nice Try, Dinosaurs! by Malo Tocquer (malo and the whale) imagines the plight of those poor dinosaurs as Noah’s ark set sail. They might have brains the size of walnuts, but they’re also ferocious predators who aren’t about to take their fate laying down. Nope, they’re putting those tiny noggins to good use and painting themselves like other animals. It’s an amazing plan. You can’t help but root for them. And they look deeply silly, especially that triceratops lion. The idea tugs at your heartstrings by casting these prehistoric beasts as dudes with a plan, and the sharp, goofy angles of the style add a storybook quality to the art.

Peace Rocks by Benjamin Hennessy (Benjamin Hennessy) had me excited to click it because the colors were so abundant and vibrant. It just plain looks FUN. And it gets better as you get closer, when each colored segment turns out to be a chunk of rock, full of texture, shadow and dimension. The art leaps off the fabric, and the way the areas connect will have your eyes bouncing around the entire scene. Great use of DTG, since it would have been tough to get all these colors in a screenprint.

Them Birds by Dan Elijah Fajardo and Peter Kramar (badbasilisk), on the other hand, is kind of a baffling choice for DTG. It deals in a low count of solid colors so there’s no technical need. And since the subject matter is the most popular mobile game of all time (Angry Birds) and one of the most well-known directors of all time (Hitchcock) in a tight parody that refers to a classic movie that still has huge pop culture recognition (The Birds)… it seemed destined for success as a traditional Threadless print. I’m really missing the logic here unless it’s intended as a test, though I do hope the decision leads to the artists banking as much money as possible. It hurts to see a design so perfectly conceived put into a position where it might not succeed. Especially during a $9.99 sale, paying a full $20 for a shirt is a hard pill to swallow… and even moreso when those cheaper shirts are considered to be produced with higher quality (screenprinting vs. DTG).

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Most winners get $2000 cash and $500 in Threadless credit, with the possibility to earn more through Bestee awards, poster prints, and reprints. Artists printed through the Labs DTG program receive 10% of sales for the week their design is sold, and are allowed to keep the full rights to their design work.

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