Today I am bring you a special feature, with a designer that was the first be to featured in the Designer Unlocked series Steve O' Blenis, also known at Warbucks Design
Today Steve has "4 new designs" to showcase and he also provides some insight into each of his new designs. This is all about Warbucks Design and his new designs so I will let Steve fill you in on all the details.
Hello, Asim. Thank you for having me back again. It was a pleasure working with you the last time and a lot of fun. I've gotten some terrific feedback since the first feature so I was honored when you asked me to do it a second time. Well for those of you who do not know who I am, my name is Steve or Warbucks360 has I appear on most sites.
I currently live in Plainville, MA with my amazing family and I have been in the graphic design business for over 15 years. It wasn't until last summer that a friend of mine turned me on to t-shirt designing and ever since then it's become a hobby outside of work. It's difficult sitting at a computer screen for over eight hours a day and then come home and slap my ideas down on the computer screen but it gives me a chance to stretch my legs/imagination from my typical everyday work.
Thank you again for the fantastic feature you ran a few months back and now I have returned with a few more recent designs. I decided that this time I would give you a little background on how I came up with these designs and the process I used to get to the finished product.
I'm sure like all artists my inspiration comes from the smallest to the largest things that I may see on a daily basis or maybe just my love for a specific genre. That's what I like most about t-shirt design, I can throw together the simplest design idea or pour hours into something else that I might be envisioning at that time. That's what keeps bringing me back, but most of all it has to be the fans who appreciate my work when I'm finally done.
There are some amazing artists out there so it's really difficult to pop your head out from the crowd but when you do and someone drops you a quick note to tell you how much they enjoyed your designs, it's just the icing on the cake. Thank you to everyone for all their support in the past. Now on with the new designs…
I'm going to talk about a few of my latest works and give you a quick background on where it came from or what I was thinking during the creation process. The first shirt I would like to talk about is called "The ABC's of Fandom".
This is a shirt actually came from an idea from a local pub that my wife and I go to and play trivia weekly. During one of the rounds, the trivia host handed out sheets of paper which had photocopies of letters. Each letter was from a different kind of candy bar and you had to guess what that candy was.
I thought that idea was terrific because every candy has such a distinct logo that you could just fire off what it was while others took some time to study and figure out the answer. That's where I came up with the idea to do the same thing but with fandoms.
There are so many fandoms and many of they have a very familiar look that I'm sure you can automatically identify with a quick glance. So that gave me the idea to create a design that was the ABC's of fandom. Each letter coming from a different logo of a fandom and you would have to guess what each one was. I sat down with a piece of paper and a pencil and scratched out my ABC's with a particular show or movie that I thought would work nicely together.
It wasn't particular easy trying to come up with twenty six letters that I wanted to use but in the end I really think it came out exactly as I had imagined. The shirt has a clean look to it and also turns into a conversational piece as I'm sure others will sit and try to guess where each letter comes from. My friends did pretty well while they got stumped on some obvious ones. Overall, I think it's something different and not like anything else I've seen before; I'm very happy with it.
My next shirt came shortly after and basically I grabbed my pencil and paper again and started writing down ideas. Not really sketching but creating a formula. May I introduce "Fandomatics 101".
I came up with the concept that there was this imaginary mathematical language combining all fandoms in the world and could be used to get from one to another. I decide to whip up a small equation from this imaginary language and illustrate it on a shirt.
It may have seemed a little far fetched but I liked the idea and it took a little of your imagination to find the answer. As I was describing my idea to some others, they didn't quite get it until I illustrated it which, in a way, was nice because it seemed like I was actually talking math with them and they had no clue what I was saying until I put it on paper. As you can see from the shirt I demonstrated how one would get from Sherlock Holmes to Star Wars with each element needed something else to get to the final answer.
As you can see this is a basic addition problem but I had thought about doing some other designs that were similar which included subtraction, multiplication and division. Keep your eyes open… you might see something in the near future.
Now let's head into the realm of television. "Talk to the Hand".
I'm a huge Big Bang Theory fan as I'm sure many others are as well. It's the first show that plays homage to all sorts of fandoms and uses language that the average non-geek or nerd just wouldn't understand. Luckily my wife is picking up the language; I'm so proud of her.
Every character on the show is great but honestly Sheldon steals the show most of the time. He's a hilarious character and you just can't help but to laugh at the stuff that he comes up with even thought in reality he would probably drive us all nuts.
My idea for "Talk to the Hand" comes from a specific episode during Wolowitz's bachelor party when Sheldon is talking to Will Wheaton. At one moment, Sheldon has been drinking too much and turns to Wheaton and says "talk to the hand" while throwing up the Vulcan hand gesture. Classic.
Basically I loved it so much I decided to make a t-shirt out of it. There are so many Big Bang Theory shirts out there and I have never seen anything like this before which is rare so I decided to go with it.
This one took a little imagination because I wasn't sure if I actually wanted to put Sheldon's face on it or just do a more simple design with a hand and text. If I left Sheldon off it would have worked in a couple of ways. One, because people might recognize the reference from the show, or two, even if you didn't get the reference people would think it's just a spoof on Star Trek.
After playing around with the design, I do most of my work in Adobe Illustrator, I decided to include Sheldon on the shirt because that was my original intent in the first place. I wanted the shirt to be from Big Bang Theory and in the end I think it turned out quite nice.
I played with the text for a while because I wanted the shirt to have a comic book look to it. It seemed like a nice touch since the guys on the show spend so much time in the comic book store anyway. I've included a few different versions of my design process and how I actually ended up with the final design.
Lastly, I would like to introduce you to my latest design "Puny God".
Have you seen the new Avengers movie? Well you should. It's amazing. Ok, that's just my opinion but it's sure doing well at the box office. This past weekend I took my wife to see the flick and she enjoyed it. The funny part was during the movie (no spoilers if you haven't seen it yet) my wife leans over to me and says, "You should make a t-shirt with that on it."
Now this was one of my favorite scenes from the movie so how could I resist. That night I went home and she actually sat next to me and gave me input on what she liked as I fired out some ideas in Illustrator.
At first I pictured the shirt with some basic copy, almost like one of those "Life is Good" shirts but as I started working I began making the text more like The Hulk font that you would find on comic books. It had a brick look to the lettering and as we designed it just seemed to all fall into place. My wife is the one who suggested it would be nice if I could include Loki on it somehow. Whether it be above the lettering or maybe a silhouette of him which led to the idea of giving the impression that Loki was smashed into the text.
Brilliant! So I worked on giving the text a smashed and sunken look while placing the puny god within the lettering. It was tough deciding exactly how I wanted to do this but after a couple of design ideas it looked best with a silhouette coming out of the letters. Very unique, very different but it captured the scene perfectly. Thanks, honey. So that's a little look into the design process and thought behind some of my latest designs. I hope you liked the finish product and that you found my brainstorming if not good, at least amusing. This is actually how I work and where my ideas come from.
Sometimes I'll be stuck for quite some time trying to think of my next concept but then I might have five ideas pop into my head which leads to a flurry of designing on my Mac. Yes, I'm a Mac guy and I love designing on it. Don't get me wrong, I have both Mac and PC at work so I give them both equal love. Ok, maybe not equal but both get my attention. Whether it's working in Illustrator or Photoshop both serve my needs perfectly.
I really enjoy talking to you and I would like to thank Asim again for asking me back. It's always a blast talking about designing, concepts and whatever else that might be on the table. If you enjoyed my designs, please check out my profile on Redbubble or you can check out my Facebook Page.
Thank you again and stay tuned because I think we have something special for you coming up and also a chance to win something cool. Thanks, guys.
Thanks again Steve and thanks to your wife who seems to be the crucial "X Factor" on your designs!