A question for you cats who make tshirt designs for a living/occupation..

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment Discussion' started by fightingrabbit, Mar 26, 2008.

  1. fightingrabbit

    fightingrabbit Banned Banned

    Jul 27, 2006
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    The world of art and design is pretty broad. And i've been confused as of late as to which classes i should take and what paths i should choose. I've seen alotta people on here who frequently talk about apparel design, which is why im here. To ask, what courses did you guys take and what degrees did you need?

    Currently for me, i am taking vocational courses for Graphic Design, which in turn i recieve a Certificate for. So i guess i would be a certified "graphic designer" But its not an AA degree to my understanding. Im taking these courses in hopes that they'll give the skills i need to start designing t-shirts or maybe even running my own line. So my question to you people who been through it all is..Would a Certificate be sufficient?

    I mean, does it have to be really extensive schooling? Because i can totally understand that the idea of wanting to design tshirts for a living is really pretty hit or miss. So im trying to be realistic, If that dream failed, Could i fall back on this "graphic design certificate" and still have something to go for and make a good living off of?
  2. cheesesteak

    cheesesteak Green Belt

    Jan 2, 2006
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    in the graphic communications world, it is better to have good ideas and a strong portfolio than a degree from so-and-so and nothing good to show.
  3. Krossinc

    Krossinc Design is el cool

    Jan 30, 2007
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    Richmond, Va
    Granted, but it is far more likely to see an impressive portfolio accompanying that fancy degree than a strong portfolio coming from someone untrained.

    Of course its possible, but it helps.
  4. Westie**

    Westie** Purple Belt

    Dec 19, 2007
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    Graphic Design is a tough racket man. I took a certificate course a few years back only to realize the when they turn you out to the real world......graphic designers are a dime a dozen. I am in Canada, and my experience was that with no portfolio the only doors opened were from small businesses who pay $10 to $13 an hour, while charging the customer $45 to $60 an hour for your services. I struggled with it for a couple years and got pissed off before getting a union job at the saw mill. That sucks too!!

    Dude, guys like you and me.....we should have stayed in school when it counted. There, hope I was able to cheer you up a little.
  5. stu3ufc**

    stu3ufc** Yoshihiro Akiyama

    Feb 6, 2004
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    good luck to you---follow your dreams --you dont need a degree always-- just have a good porfoliio --- lol now no skulls or cross bones please

    post ur designs too
  6. OleMiss_Rbl

    OleMiss_Rbl Orange Belt

    Oct 3, 2006
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    Some people are naturally creative and talented enough to make a living as an artist without formal art training. Formal schooling teaches you the techniques and principles that make art appealing to other people. In my opinion, it takes some talent, formal art training, and hands on experience to make it in the design world. Just because someone knows how to use Photoshop doesn't make them a designer. Being a good designer requires the same knowledge that makes other art forms successful: composition, line, color, balance, proportion, rhythm, emphasis, unity, etc. All of this combined knowledge is what helps you create a good portfolio. I have a Bachelors of Art from a 4 year university. The most important classes that I took were 2-dimensional design, drawing 101, every graphic design course that I could, every computer image making course that I could. I also took 3-D design, printmaking, ceramics, sculpture, and a few others. They all helped, but the first ones I mentioned really built the foundation for what I know today. All in all, if you are trying to start a clothing line, I would opt for formal art training, or hire a designer. Here is an example of a non-designer that designs t-shirts, and a formally trained artist:

    2 different beer companies:
    non-trained artist ------trained graphic designer
  7. Well, I've got a Bachelors in Fine Arts (4 year degree). My concentrations were in graphic design (Mac & PC), illustrations and photography. I used all of these skills in my 8 years in the apparel screen printing business. Get as much education and knowledge of your craft as possible. It makes any job easier.
    Some employers will use "not having a formal art degree" as an excuse to pay you less. The industry is full of people who know their way around programs like Illustrator, Corel Draw, Photoshop and Quark Express but are not creative. Strong layout skills, freehand drawing, knowledge of printing inks, and the patience of Joab to drag customer ideas & concepts out of their heads and to life are helpful too. Best of luck.

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