Reworking your Fine Art Prints for T-Shirts: beyond cropping and re-sizing

(Updated and revised from a post dated June 13, 2019, originally titled “What should I do with these?”)

This Summer I created these images, but wasn’t sure what to do with them. They are pixelated distillations of some of the nature and landscape photos I had archived.

I wondered if I should use them for textiles, backgrounds for figure artwork, or something else? I appreciate everyone’s comments and suggestions.

WIPs June 2019

I did a lot of research and eventually put them on some furniture and home decor, but I was looking for better ways to use them.

Most of the print on demand art sites allow artists to put their images on swag like totes, towels, shower curtains, and clothing in addition to wall art prints. For the items that are square or rectangular, applying images is usually a matter of re-sizing and cropping to fit. It’s a pretty straightforward process.

But I was getting stuck on T-shirts.

Yes, SOME of the all-over print styles are more suited for fine art prints, and some artwork is suited for display as a square or rectangle on a shirt. The ideal Tshirt design, however, has a transparent background with organic edges. Many of us create fine art that does not begin or end this way. It’s a big canvas-shaped square or rectangular shaped .jpg with a solid background. So how so we modify this to put it on a T-shirt without looking like a walking billboard? That was the challenge.

After much trial and error, I finally settled on the idea of overlaying the artwork onto a more organically-shaped template that I had created. Doing so preserves the essense of the artwork, while creating both an attractive T-shirt perfect for layering, and an appealing image for shoppers to browse.

Here are some examples of my original “stripes” I had posted on TeePublic last year. Kind of fun?

By the way, if you’re interested in trying your hand at selling T-shirts, I highly recommend starting with TeePublic. The user interface is super-simple, the display is very straightforward, and they help with the hardest part: the marketing. Tell them jennspoint sent you.

Stripes Collection by Jenn Pointer (archived)

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