Friday, February 24, 2012
"Stoner caravan from deep space arrives..."
It's hard to keep a secret as big as working with SLEEP to yourself. That's what I had to do after I started talking to Jason and Al about designing their new 2012 European tour shirts. It's been a rough two weeks of secrecy and lack of rest, but the design is done and was quickly unveiled.
I had a small idea of what I wanted as a design right away, but also wanted input from Al and Jason. For instance, Al wanted me to make sure that the Marijuanaut had a patch with the chemical makeup for THC. A patch with a pot leaf was added to the right arm and the center sticker of a space shuttle is actually a bong upon closer inspection. I figured Al would be fine with those additions.
"Like if the astronaut's in 2001 were listening to riffs" was Jason's idea and that was where I mentally went. I thought about how many times I had been stoned out of my gourd listening to SLEEP and the subtle meditative state that I would find myself in. During the sketching process, I went and listened to one of my favorite songs ("From Beyond") and left it on repeat for a session. The next night I worked to the live SLEEP recording that Pike gave me. Those sessions quickly produced a design that tried to convey those times of stoned meditation. I added the joint and spliff to the arms of the 2 side Marijuanaut's, hid them a tad into the smoke from the hoses so that they weren't so blatant. I didn't exactly want blatant. I wanted some to really look at it. The process was fast and It then took me 5 days of inking and detailing with the last three days being almost around the clock. It got done and I took my time insuring that they'd be completely satisfied with it.
Now that it's finished I couldn't be happier. I knew that I had to follow designs by Arik Roper and David D'Andrea, so I tried to go all out and pay some homage not only to SLEEP but to the two guys who have visually produced for SLEEP for years. It's nice to be among such great company.
The shirts will available on SLEEP's 2012 EUROPEAN TOUR starting May 3rd. Here are the dates: