TeeFury – Cool Shirts and a Smart Gimmick
My daughter recently turned me on to TeeFury a website that sells original, limited edition t-shirts with a very clever marketing gimmick. It’s worth looking at here because good art and clever marketing are our bread and butter.
The concept of TeeFury is very simple. Artists submit t-shirt designs which they produce and sell at a reasonable price with a 10% payout to the artists. The clever twist is that each shirt is only available for 24 hours and then is never offered again. The limited edition of the shirts and the dedicated marketing for that 24 hours means that every design gets a chance to sink or swim on its merits in a mercilessly short period of time. It’s good experience for the artist and with the relatively low price fans come back again and again, buying shirts as a sort of vote on the designs they like.
Some of the shirts have done very well, selling over 2000 units in a single day. Successful artists then come back and submit new designs, doing what they can to repeat their success, and in some cases doing very well. Several artists have made over $20,000 with multiple shirts even though their share is only $1 per shirt. Obviously this also means that the clever folks who came up with the idea are making even more money, but they do take on all the risk and overhead.
Of course, the frustrating aspect of this for fans is that they never know what shirts are going to get picked and shirts they missed are unavailable after the fact unless the artist prints some for sale later. For the artist the question is whether you want to be at the mercy of the TeeFury staff as far as when or if your shirt gets picked to be featured. It’s kind of a gamble whether it’s worth waiting and hoping for the higher sales TeeFury’s model will produce or the hard self-marketing work and smaller sales over a longer period of time from Etsy or Cafe Press or one of the more traditional alternatives.
The two designs shown here are for the two most recent shirts. Of course, by the time most of you read this neither of them will be available anymore and something new will have come up in the cycle.
New Font: BigBlok
A great many years ago when working in game publishing I had a real fascination with doing titles in a strong, super-bold font called Bolt Bold. The truth is I rather overused it. In doing some research I find it on more than a dozen different game books I wrote in the early 80s, all quite collectable and out of print today.
BUY NOW Back in 1995 I designed a card game called Quest for the Grail and formed a publishing partnership to produce it called Stone Ring Games. I did a bunch of design work for the game, including designing a unique title font called Marmyadose. Marmyadose was a unique font, but it was too fancy to[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Startling Stories was a pulp-era science fiction magazine known for its lurid covers by Earle K. Bergey and its eye-catching title designs. It was a companion to Thrilling Wonder Stories and Fantastic Stories. The magazine was very successful in the immediate pos[...]
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Sternhagen is a classically attractive font with a modernized gothic look which combines traditional elements from the high middle ages with a bit of Art Deco style. It will eventually be part of our Gothic Fonts Collections, but for now it is available singly.Sternhagen has a complete upper and lowercase charact[...]
Butterfield is based on letting from a poster for the Paul Butterfield Blues Band. It can be found as part of Psychedelic Fonts Collection package. It has a unique look particularly characteristic of the 60s and especially suited to use on posters. It has a full set of numbers and punctuation, plus custom small [...]
Wolfram is a great example of early 20th century type design. It is bold and intended for use in posters and signage, but it has rough outlines for a mock antique look. It also has an unusually wide footprint for a very striking look.We originally produced Wolfram in the mid-90s, and it has been somewhat revise[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Grand Concours is based on lettering designed for a poster for the equestrian competition which was held at the Paris Hippodrome starting in the 1920s. The Grand Concours itself started in the 1860s, and is basically the French answer to an American rodeo. The font is unusual [...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Squiffy is a fun font. It has a background in arts and crafts style font design, but rather than the regular, architectural character forms and arrangements, the characters are wild and irregular and highly varied. There are two distinct versions of every character, with[...]
Phaeton is one of our earliest Art Nouveau designs, a lovely example of period title lettering based on French samples. This new release has some significant improvements to the outlines and additional characters added to the basic set. You can find Phaeton in our Art Nouveau Collection or order it individua[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Continuing the theme we started a few weeks ago with the Vie Modern font and Grand Concours font., we are continuing to focus on fonts originating at the birth of Art Deco with the Paris Exposition of 1925. One of the exhibits was of design from the factories and design houses [...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Power tie is based on a design for hand lettering from the 1930s. It was originally done as a conceptual design for signage in a men's haberdashery. It is a handsome, muscular font in the Art Deco tradition. It includes a full character set with numbers and punctuation, and a se[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Our original Folkard font has achieved near legendary status as one of the most interesting calligraphic title fonts of the contemporary era. It has been enormously popular and appeared on movie titles, book covers, t-shirts and games. However it is not the only [...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Sanhedrin is a decorative futuristic font, which features two distinct sets of different characters and a number of additional special characters. It draws some characters from the Greek alphabet and also has some unusual art nouveau character forms and a strange biblic[...]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Custom Preview Escargot is based on lettering from the cover of an early pulp novel I came across a couple of months ago. It's a strong example of a distinctive style of sign and poster lettering from the 1930, characterized by super high contrast between the weighting on the le[...]
Merguez is a hand lettered font in the tradition of Speedball freehand calligraphy, but with some unusual flourishes. It makes an excellent alternative to boring informal hand lettering fonts like Comic Sans. It includes a full upper and lower case character set, plus numbers and punctuation. We picked the n[...]
Byam Shaw was a great English illustrator of the Victorian period. Stylistically he inherited many of the characteristics of the Pre-Raphaelite and Arts and Crafts artists of the earlier 19th century, putting him in the same category with other late-Victorian artists like Eleanor Fortescue Brickdale and William Russell[more]
Click on any font below to view a larger sample. One of our most interesting recent releases is our Steampunk Fonts and Texture collection. It's a new set of fonts, many of which are new or in no previous collection, plus more than 20 original high-resolution metallic textures. It's every[more]
"We are saddened by the death of legendary type designer Hermann Zapf at the age of 96. His classic fonts like Optima, Palatino and Zapf Chancery set the standard for type design for the 20th century. Zapf's long career as designer and teacher was an inspiration to type designers around the world and made all of our l[more]
From time to time I get to do some creative design work for political causes, especially in opposition to efforts to expand cybersurveillance and give the NSA access to your personal information on the internet. This week is the drive to stop CISA, which would make Facebook, Google and even your ISP accomplices in t[more]
BUY NOW Platthand is a font based on examples of lettering drawn from Elizabethan period maps. The upper case letters are embellished with extremely ornate flouishes, very dramatic. Many alternate flourished versions of the characters are also included. The lower case characters are not embellished t[more]
BUY NOW TRY DEMO Among our recent acquisitions of source material, we discovered some great samples of German letterpress type from the 1930s. These included a number of interesting fonts in the art deco and constructivist styles. Very modern looking for the period. Producing modern digital fon[more]
I was exploring the listings on eBay recently and stumbled onto a listing for a book of sample type designs from the Ukraine, published in 1930. The images on eBay were not that informative, but I was intrigued, so I ordered it. It took quite a while for the book to get here from the Ukraine, but when it arrived I w[more]
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