I love meeting artistic people, people who are pursuing their talents and passions wholeheartedly, and this week, I’ve had the privilege of being introduced to another person of this sort, graphic artist Ian Leino. Ian’s work includes lots of t-shirt designs, like this one, entitled “I Wish I Were”:
I Wish I Were by Ian Leino

As I started to peruse Ian’s site (and those it links to like threadless.com, where you can see hundreds of t-shirts by great designers like Ian), I realized I’d come upon a world that I didn’t even know existed, a world where t-shirts are art. I don’t know why it never occurred to me before, but honestly, I had never thought about the fact that someone, somewhere, must design these clothes.

Design Proposal for Kings of Leon by Ian Leino

And these people are talented. This isn’t the hackneyed stuff that I get for free every time I do a volunteer project; these are designs where people have considered the purpose of the piece – whether it be to promote a band or sell CDs, etc – and have used their creative talents to produce something striking and memorable.

Green Day Shirt Design by Ian Leino

Just looking at work like this makes me excited because something seems sincere and honest about it. Ian has found a way to support himself and still be creative. I wish that for all of us.

So take a little time to look at Ian’s art and the art of the Black Rock Collective, buy a shirt if you can, and help support those of us who can made the move into a world where we live our passions each day.

And keep an eye out for Ian’s and my friend Josiah Bancroft’s first children’s book, which I’m sure will soon be picked up by a publisher who recognize their brilliance, and which, of course, we’ll all buy because it will be amazing.

And if you see art that we should all see, please let us know. I love to write about things like this, and I love to share the work of others with people when I can. So post a link or send me an email at andilit_at_gmail.com.