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Designing Graphic T-Shirts

Lesson 5 of 5

Saving & Creating a Mock Up

Brandon Rike

Designing Graphic T-Shirts

Brandon Rike

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Lesson Info

5. Saving & Creating a Mock Up

Lesson Info

Saving & Creating a Mock Up

So when I say that I save it without a background man save uh burden triangle part okay burden work let's keep it at that. So one of the other things I can do have this enormous mock up file that I've made for a long time um and it's gonna take a long time to open I've been working at may I started the file probably like eight or nine years ago, and I keep adding garments to it. So I'm able to mock all these things up for clients on any garment they want because at some point in time we've either found the mock up like it or built the market like it. Um this mock up actually, you could find on the mock shop you could look up the mock shop and that's a good place to find some cool mox so I'll say file place linked and I thought, I have it here burden triangle art for my desktop friend and I have a question from online um, do you have any advice for a t shirt designed as multi polo goes, for instance, if I wanted to do a secondary logo on the back or sleeve, would thes same principles ap...

ply? Yeah, I think that you need to design each one of those things like it's, its own design and, you know, actually there's a lot of trends coming around right now where we're just putting it everywhere we can put it, um, you know, I've seen a shirt with, like, one graph design here, one full teacher design here, so something like this here and then they're just repeated I think you need to, at least to yourself the service of creating a good graphic for each one of those things, and then you can worry about placement later. So this is obviously the first way that I'm going to do it. So I'll send this to the client on a transparent png. So I'll say burden triangle art well, triangle, mach dot png. So when I give the client and email, it will have this in it, and if they want to mock it up for the client, they can. Now a lot of times we're going to need vector versions of these so something I could do here burns layers, convert this, make this whole thing black and will say, uh, burden bw, save it as a j so I've I in another course I referred to doing live trace and illustrator cs five has a much better life trace function than the current version of cs and I'm sure it will improve but for whatever reason right now I still like going back to see us five to do the live trace I feel like it just gets every little nook and cranny so let's do one color logo setting on this and as you're doing that braden avenue question from two smooth who's tuning in what to say he's been turning in all day actually hey says brandon, you're using a scanner to get hit from your work into the computer? What are your thoughts about using a camera phone and an ap versus your scanner? If you're happy with a go for it? Yeah, I mean, I just I you know, when I first started scanning stuff in, we use scanners and I've always used scanner since then, so here we go back to illustrator waken paste this in now you have a vector for your client, so what I would do is take the interior and take the chain logo group those together and then I hold downshift and select the others make that red and of course I can I drop let's do that I can I drop the original just so that we all have the same color, but I don't really do it that much, you know sometimes sometimes a client would want that um but let's just I drop this so press holding press and I and holding that down impressing eye and holding that down so now we have a vector version to give them also if that's better form um but I definitely output my files like this the majority of the time um so then you know we can always mess with different color ways you know if we put this on you if you put this on a blue shirt such looking like superman so then blew you know it would we'd have to kind of think differently the red is sort of the same value as blue so if we are going to stick with the red that maybe the red knees get darker and if we're gonna use the yellow I think the yellow works but maybe the yellow can also go a little bit darker um so we can call this burden triangle art blue and then go back to her mock up file change the color I've got a color over light here will do that try to find that same blue actually yeah let's do that same blue um and I like to keep a heather up here so I can copy that and bring it down and you'll learn how to mess with these mock files so I just wanna give a little bit of a heather texture so replace that replace content with my new one make custom for blue so then I can save this as triangle mach I just talked to so there's a t shirt traffic questions concerns, comments would you buy that shirt what's the most that you've done in a day oh um almost twenty yeah almost twenty I don't know if it's been twenty but I definitely know I've had days of sixteen you know, like it'll be eight o'clock at night and my wife will come in and I'm doing this with my eyes and this whole thing like I've done eighteen shirt designs today that happens a lot and you know it's there's different areas for my industry when a band when bands are gearing up for a tour, then like everybody needs their stuff right away so I just got to turn that stuff out I've got plenty of excuses on why that is ridiculous, but I can't use them, you know, like I'll be out of business. So I've always found that it's better for me to take on as much as I can and then figure out whatever principles or work flows or systems that I need to make to turn that stuff out so um I don't want I want to do about five a day, but that would be a really great day if every day a great life everyday was five but sometimes I do you know, fifteen a day it's it's nuts and then in addition to that it's also getting files and putting revisions on him and sending him off and sending approved files and whatever you know and then doing invoicing and doing scheduling and all that stuff so it's a stressful thing so you know, as we spoke about in another course on the lettering courses I you know talked about a lot like you have to create a system so that you can get all of that stress work automated or happening quickly so that you can enjoy making t shirt graphics or your graphics or whatever you do um but yeah, so I'll do a lot I do a lot in a day yeah, do you have control over the output like do you ever find that something comes back and doesn't look like how you've distressed it all the time? I have to decide how far I want to freak out over you know what I mean? Like I can freak out too when I send the file, but if I got fifteen t shirts to do that day, I have to just let it go and then I'll walk into hot topic someday and I'll say they didn't do that right, but I can't do anything about it, you know, but then I think about in the grand scheme of things what it is and that most people don't care and I could look at a lot of graphic tees and see printing errors on, um, you know, and screen printing there's a mesh count, so there's, like, how much is going to get through the screen if there's more detail than you want? Higher miscount? But if there's, not that much detail, that we use a lower mess count, which just isn't a good idea because you lose all the detail there's this artist who did all these pencil drawings and most of his drawing was with pencil, I mean, he even did stuff with ballpoint pen. So all these little lines there mostly scribbles, he just stopped doing t shirts because most of the printer's wanted pick those little lines up. So, um, the printer's, that's, it's a specialization thing, I am trying to be an expert doing this, and I'll let them be an expert at printing, and I don't wanna step on their toes so stuffed across my fingers is the reality of it. We have a question from brent. Do you ever have to draw the line with the number of revisions with a client? Um, some designers do I don't, um, thes people who work for me are becoming my friends, my work for me, I wish thes people that I work for these people that I work for are the reason I'm making a living doing this and these people aren't necessarily bad people they're just trying to get their project's done so you have to put yourself in their shoes and knowing that they're stressing out just as much as I am I getting that project the last thing they want to do is drive me nuts but you know, the bottom line is they have to get the thing to the client the way they need it uh and if that means I have to revise things in the grand scheme of things my big picture is still good I still like who I am and what I d'oh and yes, I get extremely frustrated when the revisions start getting toe like round three's around four is around five of revisions um I don't know that I've gotten to like around seven and eight of revisions and stuff like that I think you know, when you do like tour posters there's things like band logos and dates and things that have to change and those were just those air just annoying altogether but yeah, it's you have tio humanized the people that you work for especially if they're an email address you have to know their actual real person so get on facebook and figure out what they look like and make a little contact image pops up in email so you know, you're not talking to an email address because if you think you're just talking to an email address, you might start abusing that person and nobody deserves that abuse, you know, all these people are doing the best they can to get the project's done, so you don't deserve the abuse and they don't deserve the abuse, so, you know, do good work for good people and freaking be nice two people, you know, so, um, all that about revisions, but yeah, no, um, how if revisions get out of control, I probably just deal because I'm working towards a bigger picture of being a good person and and, you know, enjoying what I'm doing and, you know, just, uh, tryingto spread a little bit of good vibes across the whole thing, and I'll just take one more quick question, since I know we're short on time. Aaron is wondering if you have a specific brand of t shirt that you like to use. She notices a lot of designers typically use american apparel well, american apparel is the first, um brand to really give a good fit at a decent price. Of course, american apparel is going to be a little bit just slightly more expensive, but it fits right, so it's a slim fit. It's you know it's cut in, you know, I want to kind of direct everybody toward cotton bureau, so calm you're actually prints on american apparel. So everybody at home you guys, you design a graphic and what you gonna do with the t shirt? Graphic design a graphic for burden, but what you gonna do with it? So con bureau allows you a place to upload your thing, and people are going to get, you know, if you get twenty five pre orders and the thing gets printed and you start making money off of it. So, um, com bureau uses american apparel shirts, so get in there, make your t shirt design, go to cotton bureau dot com and the thing will actually get printed with with ink on american apparel garments. So I'm all for american apparel. I love the fit of all the shirts that I've used that's, the only brand that you know, I'm still continually using I think that their two thousand won men's t shirt. I think it was actually made in two thousand one, and I'm still wearing it today, so not the same one. I've got a different shirt, but that cut in that fit, I still like that fit the best, so, yeah, I liken american apparel there's a lot of really good ones coming up, but so far, all stick to american apparel. Thank you so much for being here with us today, and I'm lastly and most importantly, work and people find you. You find them on my website brain, right dot com all that work that you saw that straight from the site so you can go and go through all that and check the client list, see all that stuff you can follow me on twitter and instagram and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah at brandon break. I've got a monopoly on the name there's, no dot or dash or anything like that, I think there's one other brand right somewhere in michigan. Sorry, homey, uh, so I got all that stuff dribble, dot com slash brandon reich. I'm everywhere on, you know all those spots, it's all the same name. So, yeah, I'm out there contact me e mail me whatever you want. I'll be glad to answer questions, but help you glad to give you a little bit of encouragement over all. I just wanted to enjoy what we're doing and get passionate about this stuff that used to seem so commonplace, you know, we're only here for a little bit, so let's make our work worth something. Let's, make our worth our work. Change something and let's, be happy about what we're doing, and maybe that's going to rub off on somebody else. So thank you guys so much. I hope you learned a little bit of something. Um, that's it, designing a graphic. T.

Class Description

Learn the art of producing custom band t-shirts from a designer who has mastered the art.

Brandon Rike is living the dream. He makes his living designing band tees and his client list includes everyone from Aerosmith to Lady Gaga. In this beginner-friendly class, he’ll show you the ropes of professional t-shirt design. 

You’ll learn:

  • Which types of graphics work best on tees
  • Positioning and color tips
  • How to prepare files and get them printed

Whether you work for yourself or aspire to work for someone else, Brandon will teach you the best way to put an image on a shirt and share his expert insights on making t-shirts that rock.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Brandon Rike - Graphic Tees Working

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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Andrew Shim

Excellent teaching. Best of all, he took a random word from a participant and built a truly awesome band logo for tshirt right before your eyes, going from sketch to final artwork in something like 15 minutes. Of course, his vast experience and skill must surely help him speedily come up with inspiring ideas, but nevertheless, he is truly inspiring. Much, much , MUCH better trainer than most others I have had the misfortune of watching.

Hilary Slaughter

Great class! His work is top notch and he shows a lot of integrity in his designs and how he communicates with clients. I do believe he combs thoroughly through shirt design elements and how to apply it in Illustrator and Photoshop. I think you should already have some working knowledge of the software to follow the last portion, otherwise take good notes and rewatch if necessary!


Excellent stuff, I'm no pro but I found the course useful. It's good to see what can be done so you have the idea filed as you work towards the ideal.