Thursday, April 10, 2008

I'm switching to fashion design (Okay, not really)

Starting out a career as an illustrator has been exciting and challenging. I've had a steady stream of work since making the plunge over a year ago, but the finances can still cause a lot of worry- I'll get paid for a job (usually late) and be okay for a little while, but the graph (as I see it in my very visual brain) starts its immediate descent.

All that to say that I needed some kind of steady income to act as a financial base in between jobs. It needed to be something art-related and something I could be passionate about, so I decided to put artwork on shirts by way of screen printing. Though I paint in a very detailed and meticulous way, I do like doing more graphic (err.. bold, not violent) images, and it's a way to relax a little in between the more mind-consuming painting jobs.

Starting up a screen printing shop can cost thousands with professional equipment, so instead I enlisted my friend Dan (a common ally in creative ventures) to help me build something. Well, here's a picture of the press, albeit without any screens attached:


I've been using it for the past week now and it works wonderfully. The fruits of my labors can be seen at my Etsy site:

So far I've just used some of my existing artwork, but I've got a few new things planned for the upcoming weeks, including a maternity shirt. I never thought I'd be designing maternity shirts...


boogle said...

its cool. what does it cost to build (estimate) with everything totaled up? thx.

boogle said...


Michael Phipps said...

Hi boogle-

It costs about $150ish. Here's the site with all the plans:

There is a page on there with a breakdown of the costs for the hardware:

Because of a lot of interest in this press I went ahead and bought all of the hardware in bulk so I can sell it to people at a discounted price (good for both of us!)

Michael Phipps said...

There is an "ml" cut off of the end of that second web address.

Muhammad Imran said...

Seen your plans; they're great! Can I use them for commercial purposes, like sell stuff I've printed with the press (like what you're doing)?

Michael Phipps said...

Hi Muhammad, Thank you! Yes, feel free to sell whatever you make using the press. Thanks for asking!