The Perfect T-Shirt illustration & design print – any ideas?

This summer, that is still ongoing a few weeks more here in Stockholm, SWEDEN (north europe, Scandinavia), I have been pondering over what makes the perfect t-shirt image. As an illustrator and designer myself making images for T-Shirts, I wonder what makes it pop. Probably an impossible question to answer, but if you have an idea, comment below. For the fun of pondering this important issue.

I guess it is about what is in fashion for the day. What personality the buyer is who is going to wear it and actually buy it. And of course it´s about the artist making the image being printed.

Richard Reilly at is a fellow illustrator & designer in Florida USA, and one heck of a talented guy. This summer for some reason he have been popping up in my head when I look at t-shirts people wear and buy. People come in all sizes, shapes and form, and the same can be said about illustrations & designs.

Some like it with ornamental, graphic, photo, rock band, cars, mopeds, political, romantic, statements, humour and the list can go on.

Is it about placing the print in the center, the chest, the shoulder, the back, down on the side, all over and this list of questions as well can go on and on.

Some people at the same time don’t seem to care an inch or millimeter for that matter on what they put on. As long as it covers their shoulders.

Skulls seems to be very popular – all the time. Kind of timeless. Here is a skull I made and played around with a bit.

When I don’t make illustrations and designs for companies I make them for myself and my own amusement when I get the time. I sell it through Spreadshirt. Some may use other services.

Each summer I tell myself and my girlfriend/partner that I need to make myself my new summer t-shirt. Last year I made one with an ape. I like apes. So an ape it became. I called it ”Sapiens”. A play with meanings. Sapiens became a word standing for a Homo Sapien being an ape for some reason. I placed it on a green t-shirt.

I am starting to think if I should make an autumn t-shirt or sweater. Or something in that line.

One thing is for sure, many t-shirts images & designs are like memories. Yes it can be collectors items, but certain ones are memories of something you did and experienced at a certain time in your own history, in your life. Some just because you for some reason unknown liked the design and image.

Stefan Lindblad
Illustrator, artist & graphic designer


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