The Design Loop

Archive for the ‘Print’ Category

submit a get your idea

Take some time to come up with the best original idea you can think of. We’re not talking your fraternity’s logo or a photo of your new puppy. We’re talking an idea so amazing that your eyeballs may explode if you stare too long!

Use our submission kit for templates and to learn about all the various incredibly awesome specialty ink and print methods we offer.

submit b submit your idea

Use the templates provided in the submission kit to prepare your design files. Click the “Submit a design” button below, follow the instructions and fill out the form to submit your design for presentation to the Threadless community.

submit c the community rate

Over a period of 7 days, the Threadless community will score and comment on your submission. These scores and comments will help us decide which designs should become the next Threadless tees!

submit d if your idea

  • $2,000 in cash
  • $500 Threadless Gift Certificate (can be redeemed for $200 cash)
  • $500 in cash each time your design is reprinted
  • Alumni Club Membership including a Medal of Honor and other goodies

Click here to find out more!


Its time again for the Ravinia Poster Contest!

For over 30 years, the Women’s Board of Ravinia Festival has sponsored an annual competition to select the design that will become the unique poster used to promote the festival’s season. The annual poster and its principal design image become a distinctive signature of the Ravinia Festival season. It should therefore convey the rich experience of enjoying outstanding musical performances in this lush and historic outdoor park.

High school and college participants may submit only one entry. Entries must be sent to the Ravinia Festival at 418 Sheridan Road, Highland Park, IL 60035, no later than Friday, December 3, 2010. Judging is on the basis of graphics and design quality and will take place on Thursday, December 9, 2010.

If you would like help preparing or sending in your entries, speak to David Rodriguez ( and he can help with critique, prep or postage.

1st prize: $1000

For more information and the entry form: please go here

This friday a group of students from Kayce’s Typography class and others took a trip all the way to Two Rivers, WI to the Hamilton Wood Type Museum.  Here are some pics from the trip for you to enjoy.


Career Services wants to help the CLA promote an event here on campus.  We are asking Westwood Design students to participate by create a postcard or poster design.   This opportunity is great for resume and portfolio building, and the chosen winner[s] will receive a small gift-card incentive.

Designs can be turned into Career Services or sent to, Questions can be directed toward the same place.

Designs are due Thursday, May 13th


Carol Matthews and the Career Services Department are currently involved with the Chicago Loop Alliance [CLA].    We received information regarding Art Loop 2010 – a public art program debuting this summer.

Major installations will include Chicago-based contemporary artist Tony Tasset’s “Eye’ – a 30 foot tall sculpture.  This, the largest eyeball sculpture in the world, will be installed at the corner of State Street and Van Buren July through October.  The “Eye” will be accompanied by a “flipbook” banner series featuring Tasset’s image of a cardinal, the Illinois State bird, taking flight along State Street between Wacker and Congress.

CLA initiated this public art program in order to reinforce State Street and the Loop as an international must-see destination this summer.  The “eye-catching” sculptures will also enhance the already significant collection of public art exhibited throughout the city.

The CLA is asking members to help market this event

While surfing the net today, I discovered in a forum that people are under the impression that the need for collateral material is diminishing. In an increasingly digitized world, it is believed that flyers, brochures, postcards, pamphlets, folders, and etc., will go the way of dinosaurs. I, for one, think the opposite.

Collateral materials such as brochures and flyers will continue to support a main goal, an idea, or sell a service or a product and help drive people to a website, a business, or an event. Pamphlets, folders, or posters, can be both attractive and informative. Fact is, in the new world of business and marketing, the old saying, “if you build it, they will come,” is no longer applicable. On the web, an e-commerce website will go unnoticed without a poster or a printed ad on the bus. People need a constant reminder what a website can do in able to compete with the other million and a half websites out there that does the same exact thing. What makes people go with Sprint rather than T-mobile? How do people understand the details in plans and services and the differences in prices quickly? The answer is collateral materials. The regular consumer does not necessarily seek out deals on his/her own deals come to them. Otherwise, how else would I know that there is a half price deal on wine bottles on Mondays at a neighborhood bar unless they tell me through a flyer that would eventually lead me to go on their website for more info?

Not to be socially irresponsible of our planet’s precious resources, but collateral materials are still needed in this day and age to inform people of what a company or group does. About a week ago, I was in a T-mobile store, speaking with a sales rep about upgrading my cell phone plan. The sales rep gave me a flyer that detailed several plan choices that worked best for me. After the sale was completed, I gave back the flyer because I knew that if I kept it, it would end up in the trash for sure. Giving back the flyer to the sales rep allows T-mobile to pass that same flyer on to a different customer and thus, helping the company become socially responsible. Sometimes people don’t want to carry a flier that some sales rep handed to them, they’ll most likely throw it on the ground and it will catch another person’s attention, acting as another form of advertising.

The digital age does not mean the need for collateral materials are diminished; it simply means that we need better ways of presenting information. Being different from other franchises means having the most creative and engaging collateral and digital designs. Furthermore, collateral and digital materials should work together hand-in-hand. Having one does not replace the other.

This is a posting from Louie’s Blog which you can see at

Today I had a conversation with Randall, a former classmate and now co-(student)worker, about the difference between a niche and a style as it relates to design. The conversation came up after Randall brought up a designer named Joshua Davis who wrote a computer program that systematically creates designs based on parameters he has set up. I watched a Youtube video of the graphic designer talking about his method of design for BMW. His method is to basically just run the program on a lackluster computer– which “will not design anything twice”– that creates swirly designs. After creating these swirly images, Joshua then embeds an image of the BMW’s wheel well. The end result looks like a really interesting repetition of a car’s wheel well.

Joshua created three of these and they all essentially looked the same, but in different colors. Near the end of the video, the screen read, “3 pieces signed by the designer,” to which Randall said “signed by the computer?” I laughed. Hearing this designer talk about how dynamic his designs were when a computer was the one that was actually doing them was frustrating.  It was even more frustrating knowing that this guy was hired by BMW to do just that kind of work.

I showed Randall some pieces by Chuck Anderson, a designer that I am not very fond of, and began the discussion about niche and style. I explained to him that Chuck Anderson’s work usually involves a beautiful photograph and colorful light streams. Although, both elements are usually beautiful, I consider the concept a niche. He has found a niche, and he continually does it for each and every client he gets, and thus, triggers my displeasure for this kind of design.

Should designers have a certain niche? A style? Is it OK to keep repeating a tired old solution for every client a designer gets? Does the same rule apply for an illustrator, or is it more important to be stylish than it is to have a niche?

Ten Images for Ithaca” is a poster competition begun in 2002 by the Municipality of Ithaca, Greece, as an attempt to reinforce the cultural profile of the island, through the applied arts.

Throughout the years, the competition has evolved so that, today, it is considered a point of interest for professionals, students and, people that are interested in graphic arts. The contest’s main goal is not only to accent Ithaca as a meeting point for creative people from all over the planet, but, also, to help create ideas that promote the art of visual communication.

See Past Winners

More Info About Contest



The contest page has been updated. Check out more contests here


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