When designing my own t-shirt, right out of the gate, there’s a hurdle.
HURDLE #1: I’m a writer not a designer. I eek out Monets because the world is a visual place. We talk with pictures, graphics, signs, and gestures, but only in the privacy of a website I create for fun do I dare don a designer’s hat.
I’m not afraid of hurdles. Used to run Track at Mooseville High. Besides, no one besides you will see these, so I nip that first hurdle and set out to do some sketches. After all, designers do sketches of some sort before starting. Don’t they?
HURDLE #2: After 15 minutes with my pencil frozen half an inch above the journal thinking of all the potential t-shirts I can create, I decided to give myself parameters to help make concepting more productive.
I chose the Mayor’s book, Becoming a Warrior, as a theme because it’s chock-full of potential for unique tee ideas. MORT'S REVIEW: If you haven’t read this book, you should. Good stuff. I give it two hooves up.
I GOT MY STRUGGLES
HURDLE #3: My hoofnails did not come out like I had envisioned. I’m such a writer. The evidence is rutted on the page. And what with that bird? I basically went under this hurdle rather than over, which would technically disqualify me in the race.
C.A.W. is a group of young citizen vigilantes who are training to fight like Warriors. The acronym stands for Citizens Acting (as) Warriors. In times of war, by queen's law, all citizens are taken across the Great Ravine to the Reserve, but this group wants to help protect Themiscia on the battlefield.
HURDLE #4: THE FONT
Too many fonts, too little time. I slapped more parameters on the project and stuck with the fonts the author used in the book’s cover and innards design. Another hurdle, cleared.
HURDLE #5: THE BIRD
Since my drawing skills are abysmal, I had to turn to others for the bird, which meant a Google search. This hurdle was higher than I had anticipated because once on the Google, I got the wah-wahs. This world from the novel does not exist (or does it), so the choice couldn’t be too familiar. On the twelfth page, on the fifth key word search, I finally threw in the towel.
So many problems with the first bird. One, it looks like birds that perch on my antlers and hind, or at least the way I imagine them to look. The assholes fly off when I swivel to see who’s there.
Another problem with Option 1, the beak wasn’t big enough to fit the “C.” I had to warp the perspective, thus making it look a bit like a seagull that had a fish stuck its throat. Oh well.
This bird is more in tone with the novel. It has a mythical, magical, or prehistoric feel, like it comes from another world. Plus, I didn't have to alter the beak to fit the lettering. Score.
MOOSE MUNCH MOMENT: Sometimes patient and persistence in the scouring for images phase really does pay off.
HURDLE #6: FONTS AGAIN
The first choice, Atari Bold Grunge, is too boxy, too formal for their primitive world, but Native Land was a bit harder to read. Based on name alone, I chose Native Land. After all, this book is Avatar meets Gladiator meets Harry Potter meets Swiss Family Robinson.
Slivers were the original surfboard. Citizens and Warriors alike love water sports. It's part of their naval defense, and fishing provides a large portion of their food source.
There are several businesses in Themiscia. Scented Goddess, Savage Huntress, Second Hands, Terra's Tea House, Madame Shaw's, the island is covered in entrepreneurship. According to Amaria (the main character), Night Run Slivers make the best watercraft, second only to those made for the queen's army.
Yikes, what shitty Photoshop work! This is too ragged around the edges. Talk about a rough comp. But, the idea comes through whether on a white or black tee.
HURDLE #7: TIME
I've run out of time. The deadline I set for myself is here. I'll return to this project next week. I've made a solemn vow because, of all things I got out of this exercise, the best reward has been bringing what's been written on paper to life. All in Her name.