We really love a simple and straight forward design. They captivate and excite us, because they demonstrate that you can tell a great story, paint a perfect picture, or convey a complex message without having to go too crazy or be a modern day Picasso or Rembrandt.
But when you toss donuts and surfing into the mix, you don’t just grab our attention, you steal our heart.
This week’s customer design of the week comes to us from our friends over at Big Kahuna Donuts in Austin, Texas. Fun illustration work, complementary colors, and a simple and concise arrangement definitely won over our judges.
Imri: This design is all about fun: the colors, the imagery, and the glazed donuts. This is the kind of shirt that says “I’m ready to party” and/or “I’m out running errands.” Although Austin, Texas isn’t necessarily known for surfing, donuts, or being Hawaii, this fresh new business venture has that concept on lock. The artwork they sent for the back was not ready for prime time, so I completely recreated it, adding strong outlines and bold colors. The front needed only minor adjustments, so I was able to leave the original spirit of it intact–including most of the muscles.
This is clearly not a man who eats baked goods all day, but he seems to enjoy the occasional donut while riding a wave of Hibiscus. This t-shirt makes me smile, and I hope it helps Big Kahuna Donuts ride the waves of success into the future.
Joe: Sweet treats and tasty waves?!? Sounds like a well-rounded breakfast to me! The illustration is very clean and well executed. I love that the “I” on the back print in “I heart donuts” is a surfboard, which helped hammer home the company’s brand of surf and starch. It is fun and colorful; all the things I look for in a donut. This design hangs a perfect ten out of ten, brah. This tee is totally tubular!!
Mike: There are a lot of effective ways to sell donuts. Honestly, the trick is standing out from competition; donuts do a pretty good job selling themselves. Mmmm. Donuts.
Anyway, sometimes to compete with booming competition you need a great hook. Big Kahuna Donuts uses what might seem like a non-sequitur. But that non-sequitur–the random intermingling of killer surf and tasty donuts–is exactly what makes Big Kahuna really stand out.
The branding that Imri worked on for this tee shirt really illuminates the fun and lighthearted feel of Big Kahuna Donuts. The images are light and crisp, and the big glazed donut on the back of the shirt makes you want to bask in the sun and enjoy a fresh one, straight out of the fryer. The front of the shirt consists of a dynamic and moving composition with the hibiscus wave adding a nice subtle nod to the Hawaiian Islands. The composition on the back conveys the “I <3 DONUTS” message effectively, with a well-rendered surfboard reading easily as the “I.” Combine all this with fun and bright colors and you have a shirt that will delight any surf enthusiast or donut aficionado.
Put me down for a dozen!