January 24, 2009
We interview t-shirt designer Justin Bennett.
TM: How long have you been designing t-shirts?
JB: Let’s see… I started getting my feet wet a little over a year and half ago. Around March of 2007.
TM: Have you done work for any “big name” clients?
JB: Yes sir I have! Some of my bigger named clients have been such bands like All Time Low, Bayside, Parkway Drive, Set Your Goals, and Just Surrender. If you consider those big names?
TM: Out of all the designs you’ve created, which one is your favorite?
JB: Tough Call! I never really have a favorite, but there are tons of designs I’m way proud of. You can even check them out for yourself at (http://www.coroflot.com/jbennettdesigns). Haha yikes to my shameless self promotion. that I’m actually working on a new piece inspired from the movie Stand By Me. So that right now is what I’m digging most.
TM: How do you get inspiration for your t-shirt designs?
JB: As cliche as it may sound, my inspiration really comes from everything, everywhere, and everyone. One day I can be persuaded by seeing a flower to the next day being intrigued by the lighting of a fart. It really is just whatever I have stuck in my head at the time. Requested concepts come up a lot too from customers. The typical ideas tossed at me are of zombies, guts, filth, animals, death, etc. etc.. You get the picture.
TM: What are the best methods you’ve used to promote yourself?
JB: Myspace! Haha well not really. Starting out, that was my main source of getting known. I however noticed the best thing is improving your art. Making great designs will bring you even better clients. Word of mouth seems to travel fast throughout this work. Emptees has been an actual great help to get your name and work spread! I enjoy that place and spend a hell of a lot of time on it, sadly. Another step I’m doing as of late is taking a new approach and doing my own limited run of tees and pins which I’ll be selling sometime soon.
TM: How much of your time do you devote to t-shirt designing?
JB: Basically all of my time. When I’m not busy with projects at school, I’m designing. It’s such a great thing to do and I’m never really at a stand-still with it. An average would be somewhere around 5 to 6 days a week.
TM: What are some helpful tips you can give to those trying to get there designs seen and get clients?
JB: The best thing is to work hard and improve constantly. Always wanting to become a better artist is what I do. Pushing myself to try new things, techniques, and so forth. So, the harder you work at it will show and get you the attention you’re seeking. Advertise! Getting yourself established is super hard in this business, so always flier your name or work everywhere you get a chance. Just don’t take it so far as to make it an annoyance.
For more on Justin Benito, check out his portfolio.