As the OCD Specialist for Neon Shields this past week or so after the SXSW Education Conference, when not filming for Adina (our Kickstarter Video Director) I have been dedicating my time to redesigning our Neon Shields Apparel. In my last blog post I discussed the importance of having shirts, its effective marketing, creates bonding between the team, and they are ultimately fashionable. What I learned though, because each of our team member shirts were individualized and we were only ordering 1 of each the cost would come about to $30+ per shirt. Unless we planned to mass produce shirts and sell them, then we would be able to buy each shirt for less. The problem is that we are not allowed to sell our shirts at the Make-o-Rama or do we known if our broke-high school-senior friends would be able to buy a shirt.
Faced with this problem, I asked my art teacher, Mr.Smith if he had any ideas for producing our t-shirts at a cheaper cost. He suggested that the best solution would be to create a uniform design for our entire team and screen print them. I have heard of screen printing before this, but I have no way to go about it. Luckily Mr. Smith, craft and technology savvy, has agreed to help Neon Shields screen print out shirts. He was also so kind as to send me some of the materials our team would need (that we already don’t have in the art room), which I have included below in case you are also interested in screen printing.
After talking to Ms. Miesner for funding for the materials, the only thing our team now needs to purchase are the t-shirts. As mentioned before we have opted for a baseball cut shirt, in dark grey and black. Who doesn’t like baseball cut shirts?
The trouble of having to redesign our shirts, was creating one design from all our shirts. Each one was created uniquely for each team member, so I ultimately had to create whole new designs that still embodied Neon Shields. The one thing all the shirts had in common, which we knew we wanted to keep in the shirts was our name “Neon Shields” in an Andes font in an arch across the shoulder blades. Keep in mind I am designing these using Inkscape, a free program, that you can easy download to your computer, that gives you the same tools as Adobe Illustrator, that doesn’t mean it function the same. I went in expecting it to be very similar to Adobe Illustrator, but I quickly realized that it was it’s own thing. After multiple failed attempts and a YouTube tutorial (Curved Text) I learned how to curve text, and got the following result.
After more struggle and Googling I learned a few tricks and the basic function of Inkscape to design the back of our shirt. For our design I included our mascot Steve, the eagle, with a banner that also has the name of our flashlight. As well instead of our names I included our “Neon Shields Names”, i.e. Lord of Knowledge. At the bottom we have our beloved Austin Skyline, because it represents night time and our origins. This design is still currently under editing, I hope to curve the skyline to make it look more natural in the design and I hope to create a front t-shirt design.
Till then, stay safe and stay beautiful.
-The OCD Specialist, Neon Shields