I am starting a new feature where I write about tees I like. This will be in addition to other stuff, but I feel it will be relatively easy for me to post a picture of a tee I like, and briefly write about what I like about it and where you can get one.
To kick things off, I'm going to start with one of my all-time favorite tees - I remember seeing this on the tee blog ADDICTEED (R.I.P.) back when it came out and being so impressed with its boldness and simplicity of communication.
"WRONG WAY" by ROCKWELL
(image ruthless stolen from a Polish webforum here)
If I get talking about t-shirts for more than five minutes, I will inevitably say 5-10 nice things about Piet Parra, the Dutch artist behind Rockwell (and tons of amazing fine art pieces and collaborations with brands like Stussy and Nike). I've been a fan of the guy for years (Yeah Dude is me really letting my love of his aesthetic show, though I feel like it's still Seibei enough to be a love letter rather than a ripoff), and his work embodies everything I aspire to in tee design: bold, unique, simple design that is done smartly and doesn't take itself too seriously.
This was the first Parra tee I ever saw that I remember. I actually used to own it, but unfortunately left it at our apartment's laundry room the day Kate and I left California (I really hope it ended up with someone that appreciates it). I have what is probably a pretty evident interpretation of this piece, given away by its title - someone knowing they're going the wrong way, yet charging forward. Or maybe it's someone contemplating whether or not they're doing the right thing - either way, to communicate this so quickly with a one color graphic is amazing to me. It sticks with you.
About a year ago, I saw Parra in conversation with Victor Moscoso at the SF MOMA (lovingly written up at Jeremy Riad's blog here), and it was fantastic. I really appreciate the way he approaches his work, and the way he interacts with his audience - he said that once you get to know your audience and once they get to know you, you can start making little in-jokes with them. Parra is as nice a guy as you'd expect, and he was very kind when I went up to him after the show and managed to spit out something about his work being a huge influence on me.
Anyway, I should probably stop rambling while I'm ahead. I wonder if I'll be able to be this verbose when writing about any other tee?