Interview with Jeff Foreman aka The_Stray
Jeff Foreman is a designer from California, some of you may know him as The_Stray from Design By Humans, TeeFury, or other design contest websites. Here is a short interview I did with him about his career in art:
What is a day in the life of Jeff like?
I stay up really late and tend to wake up absurdly late in the afternoon. Fool around on the internet most of the day, watch some cartoons, lately a lot of Batman Beyond and Justice League Unlimited. Then if I’m not lazy I’ll get around to working on some art. I also write and make music in my spare time.
How did you get into designing t-shirts? Have you always designed them?
I haven’t always designed shirts. I like drawing and illustrating, I’m a “media arts and animation” major. Having designs on shirts is something I’ve always thought about doing, but never had the money or resources to print or sell shirts on my own. Then I found out about DBH, and gave it a go, and I’ve been having fun with it ever since.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years with your art career or otherwise?
Doing more than just t-shirt design. Cartoons, comics, illustration, lots of other things. Hopefully I can make a decent living off of doing the things I love.
What advice would you offer to aspiring designers?
I think a lot of beginners get wrapped up in what software can do, but I think it’s really important to make sure you hone your craft and strengthen your fundamentals. That is if you take this seriously and want to be your best or make a career out of it. Try to draw every day, learn about the principles of design. Your local library can be a great source of information.
About how many t-shirts do you own? Do you have a favorite?
I don’t even know, a lot, haha. Choosing a favorite is hard. DBH shirts are definitely my favorites though.
You ranked pretty high in the Design By Humans 10k contest last year, care to share how you may have done it?
I really just did my best on my design, and constantly promoted it on twitter, facebook, myspace, deviantart, and anywhere else.
Lastly, what website do you think is your favorite to submit to?
Right now I really like submitting to Teefury. It’s a relatively quick process, no voting, you get to keep the rights to your design, and how much you make depends on how popular your design is, I’ve made $350 on the low end and over $1,000 on the higher end there.
Jeff has had three prints at Design By Humans, and also a few at TeeFury. His design Umibozu was a big name in the DBH 10k last year. He also won the Halloweek contest at DBH with his design Revenge is Sweet. He has one more shirt called pixskullz which is probably my favorite out of the three.
His very popular design titled Lyrics are Bottomless has beed added to Teextile’s set of shirts today! It was once printed at TeeFury and appears again for everyone to enjoy.