Design process

Since September or so, I’ve been drawing designs for t-shirts and accessories for sale on my shop ( It’s been a lot of fun and I love bringing my ideas into fruition.

A day or so ago, during a regularly-scheduled Portland winter rain, I thought of Gene Kelly in “Singin’ in the Rain,” and I thought of Totoro reveling in the raindrops making a loud noise on dad’s umbrella, and voila, a new idea was born.

I thought I’d share my design process with you today! Since buying an art tablet, I often skip the paper sketch, but today that’s where I started.

First I sketched a general idea of my layout:

Then I drew it on the tablet. I had to change the size of the bus stop sign to accommodate Totoro, and I used the “rotate image” feature to get the angle of his body just right. I had to draw the legs several times to get his left leg higher than the right so it would make sense to have it in the air.

I added color, then text:

Then I added raindrops. I decided to use the same color as the bus stop sign to keep the palette simple.

Finally, the design was ready for publishing on Threadless!

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