Sunday, 28 July 2013

Some new t-shirts!

The shape of things to come...
It's been quite a busy time just lately... but I thought it might be quite nice to squeeze in a little bit of self initiated work, so combining my love of t-shirt's with some of the musical influences and design influences that I have, I thought it would be nice to come up with some t-shirt designs, below are just some of them, the ones below predominately play with design, colour, shape and pattern... do let me know what you think...
more to come too...

Music Listened to while working on self initiated T-Shirt designs:
Graceland by Paul Simon
Blood On The tracks by Bob Dylan
Stephen Stills by Stephen Stills
Stills 2 by Stephen Stills (Both awesome)
Brothers and Sisters by The Allman Brothers
One Man and His Prog - Planet Rock show on Sunday nights 12pm

Thursday, 11 July 2013

T-Shirt Friday 19 !

The Comfort Of... A Well Worn T-Shirt !
Well now... did you get last weeks T-Shirt Friday Quiz Conundrum? You'd probably have to be a bit of a Rush fan to know the answer.... The answer is.... Ayn Rand (Who was famous for her two novels 'Atlas' and 1943's 'The Fountainhead') So all that is left to do is reveal the winner... who this week is Mollie, well done Mollie, how will you celebrate? Maybe by putting on some Rush and turning all your frying pans and saucers upside down and bashing them with a set of spoons in a style not unlike Neil Peart perhaps?

Today's T-Shirt can be found on:,default,sc.html 

It's very easy to forget when you have a big collection of T-shirts, that the ones that are really comfortable and you find yourself wearing the most are actually the plain ordinary ones that hang day upon day in your wardrobe or are neatly folded at the bottom of your draw with the moth balls, Not with motifs on, or tour dates printed on the back... Tee's with nothing to shout about... Quietly waiting for you to re-discover them... In fact though, just one said tee can be all you need to help you get through what ever you have to face in life...

Nearly 8 months ago now, I took voluntary redundancy from where I'd worked for the last 13 years. Most of my collection of tees had built up over that time and are certainly influenced by that job... Suddenly I found myself not having to get up on the alarm any more, not following a routine and not really feeling the need to wear any of the rock band and music t-shirts that were... Well... there is no point in saying neatly folded up in the chest of draws because they weren't, let's just say organised into a chaotic pile on the bedroom floor... Time and routines started to spin out of control, "focus is needed" I thought after spending six hours in the flat during the day in just my pants, this same thought was also echoed by Miss Russell, many good friends and family... So with the help of the aforementioned I began to slowly and surely... Well to quote the Pink Floyd song... come back to life, an important aspect of that was job searching but also realising that it would be possible to take on some freelance work.... Work started to come in, trickling to start with and then (never really gushing) but at a level of a constant stream, with all of this going on, I hardly noticed the clothes that I had been wearing and then one day I stopped for some reason to take on board what I had on, as I peered down I found myself in the light green tee pictured below... there it was, an ordinary everyday t-shirt, doing what it does best, silently working it's magic to make the wearer feel comfortable and relaxed, I'd spent many a day lounging around in it and now it was with me while I worked too... As you'll see it's done battle a few times with toothpaste being dropped down it and many ingredients from our kitchen and fridge being smeared and rubbed in... To quote Miss Russell "Many canteen badges" have found there way on to it's well worn surface! What makes it even more special is that it was bought by my Mum and given as a gift along with a pair of rather comfy Asda pyjamas... not for Christmas, a birthday or even pancake day, but just as a gift, that's what makes it such a great t-shirt, it's had the benefit of being a part of that unique process when a loved one just gives you something for no reason, just because they want too...

So there it is, my everyday t-shirt! ... and it's stayed with me ever since, along with Miss Russell sitting up with me through many late nights of designing, writing and finishing projects, helping with my confidence by just being a very wearable tee... It was then that it hit me just how important t-shirts can be to us all and so it was that the slightly battered light green, Asda t-shirt, bought by my Mum, became the catalyst for what has become the very thing that you are reading right now... T-Shirt Friday! 

Well here we are again, and so fitting with the more general feel of this particular piece of apparel, here is a general knowledge question for the T-Shirt Friday Quiz Conudrum this week: Cotton is often used purley or mixed to make t-shirts: Which country is the largest exporter of cottton? Hmmm... That one should get you thinking...

More on Cotton:
More on t-shirts:
Asda? :

Thursday, 4 July 2013

T-Shirt Friday 18 !

A Rush Job ....
The Joker was an instant classic when it was released... but what year did it come out? That was last weeks T-Shirt Friday Quiz Conundrum! And the answer is: 1973, Dawn and Misaki were absolutely right! well done! The Conundrum badge of excellence is on it's way in cyberspace to you right now! Congratulations! How will you celebrate? You could both wear masks like the one that Steve Miller is wearing on the cover of The Joker and perhaps each try and eat a Knickerbocker glory at the same time? Would you go for Raspberry sauce,  sprinkles or perhaps both...?

Today's T-Shirt can be found on: 

It's been a busy week this week so T-Shirt Friday is not only about a 'Rush' T-Shirt but it's been a bit of a 'Rush' to prepare this week too! (Sorry, it might show in the content)... A Rush about a Rush you might say... The hours drift away...

There we were, February 2012... Having travelled up the Victoria line to our final destination, we found ourselves peering into shop and cafe front windows at Brixton Market, until finally we found the very restaurant we were after... It wasn't that we had been recommended the food there or even the place, it was more to do with what was on there wall, hanging high above our heads with pride of place was a print by none other then Miss Russell! We stopped to look at it and take some photo's, it was great to see it in situ, Miss Russell was excited and so was I! Although the Italian restaurant had not been recommended to us, we had also not come by the print on the wall by happy accident either... Miss Russell had taken part in an illustration treasure hunt! where by lots of illustrators had there work put up in many of the cafes, restaurants and bars in and around Brixton market. After getting the photo's and having a chat to the owners of Casa Sibila, we left to have a good look round, we soon returned for a fall slap up meal though! with the shadow of Miss Russell's print casting over us, the meal was very tasty indeed! and we soon began hunting further for other illustrators work... Until finally we not only found their pieces but we found the illustrators themselves too! - It was decided that we would all go off for a drink, so we followed along to a bar in the far corner of the other end of the market and up the stairs to what can only be described as a slightly odd but quirky and very interesting bar/cafe space... Although it was all very pleasant, it was slowly dawning on us that that we really didn't know anyone in the room and it was dawning on me that eyes for some reason were fixating on the tee that I was wearing...

Sometimes you don't really even think about what your putting on in the morning...

In some cases it becomes apparent later that it wasn't a good choice for that particular day (e.g. weather) and in others it's just not an appropriate tee to wear to what ever event it is your going too. In this case it would seem that the 'Rush - Fly By Night' tee was in the former category. To give it it's due the tee perfectly recreates the 'Fly By Night' cover originally painted by Eraldo Carugati and at a Rush gig would be the perfect thing to have on! I love it just as much as I love 'Rush'! However I'd misjudged where we were going that day... We found ourselves amongst many cutting edge illustrators and designers and there I was slumped on a chair with a beer in my hand, with nothing but a slightly out of date prog rock owl jumping out of my stomach...
Then it happened... Two people decided to leave, all the time throughout the drink, they had been looking at the tee and whispering, they came over to say goodbye to Miss Russell and in doing so said "Oh, I like your t-shirt" one of them asked who Rush were, to which I thought it best to answer with "Ah... An old band" (to be honest if you don't know who Rush are it's probably not really worth taking the time to try and describe them to someone....) Without really thinking any further about it all, we settled back in to our drinks, then another two illustrators said there goodbyes, once again comments were made about the t-shirt... What was going on? (We both thought) At this point I was starting to become slightly self conscious about it all and began checking myself to make sure that I hadn't dropped toothpaste or half a kit Kat down my front and on the owl! I decided to put my coat on and zip it up so that the tee was no longer visible, this caused me to sweat profusely as the bar was very warm... oh dear, you just can't win sometimes... Soon we left too and laughed about the whole thing on the way home on the tube, as the t-shirt was being stared at again by a tired business man... We never did actually get to the bottom of what the mystery of the Rush T-Shirt was all about... Maybe it's that the owl image is quite hypnotising? Maybe there was something quite unmentionable down my front? or maybe it's just that it's not a tee that you see around a lot? Who Knows? What ever the case, it was all very strange indeed... it's amazing what a T-Shirt can do!

Well it's that time again! This weeks T-Shirt Friday Quiz Conundrum is: The song 'Anthem' from 'Fly By Night' by Rush is inspired by which philosopher? Hmmm... tricky one this week!

P.S. If you do have any ideas as to what the fixation about the shirt is all about, do let me know your thoughts!

More on Rush?:

Monday, 1 July 2013

Bare Feat In The Sauce!

An Idea For A Little Feat T-Shirt...
As you'll probably have realised by now, I'm a huge fan of the band Little Feat, I'm also a huge fan of T-Shirts in general, which you may have seen from the T-Shirt Friday posts... Recently I've been working on some self initiated T-Shirt design projects (There will be a post about those in the next couple of weeks) While working on them though, I thought it might be nice to put together an idea or two for some of my favourite bands, as a kind of tribute... Here is the first, the idea is based around the 'Waiting For Columbus' album and the tomato theme from that album. It was fun to do and really nice working just with Illustrator and drawing vectors... Do let me know what you think? If this tee and all the other designs are popular enough, I may consider printing and selling them, but lets see...

Music Listened to while working on self initiated T-Shirt for Little Feat:
Past Orbits Of Dust by Renaissance
Birds Of Fire by Mahavishnu Orchestra
Down On The Farm by Little Feat
The Sensual World by Kate Bush
Surprise by Paul Simon
Planet Rock round the clock!