The design process evolving due to Print On Demand products.

Sometimes the simplest thing can change your entire thinking and design process. A while back I started building designs for cafepress and after discovering their payments to people external to the US leaves a lot to be desired I switched over to zazzle who at least makes payments via paypal (amongst a long list of other reasons including ease of setting up a product and being able to make template designs). What this has meant is that I am thinking more and more about the sorts of things I want on a badge or t-shirt along with how to market them online and offline. So how has this really changed my thinking process and how I work?

As a web designer and print designer a large amount of my work is done through Photoshop touching up photos recolouring and adjusting files to work on the web or for printing. Now I am working on designs for apparel I am spending a lot more time with illustrator than ever before and discovering quite a few things about it which is changing my thoughts for different designs. Having the option to include a different treatment to my designs has visibly changed how they look.

That would always be the case of vector over pixel design, but switching from a truly grunge dirty textured treatment for my designs to something much cleaner has changed the way I market my products.

Using vector programs like illustrator has allowed for greater scalability with my designs, meaning a pin badge concept can easily be scaled to fit on a large format poster. So I am now freed from the constraints of the product I initially designed the piece for.

Developing my skills in illustrator (or at least getting significantly faster with it) has the flow on to my normal design job, making me more employable. Funny to think that doing work to build a passive income for myself increases my employability and in turn my pay.

There are many alternate vector programs out there, and I have even taken to carrying a USB memory stick with me which has a free vector program designed for that particular use, so I can hop on any computer and be able to put designs together when inspiration strikes. Not being tied to a particular computer has allowed me to get designs built when I would have otherwise forgotten about them by the time I had made it home to put it together.

Do you have any examples of this sort of thing yourself? I would love to hear them.

It would be cool to one day be interviewed by someone wearing one of my designs. Regardless of wether they knew of the connection between myself and the design.

One Thought to “The design process evolving due to Print On Demand products.”

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