When I stopped drinking in 2008 it was suggested that I would end up with some time on my hands so I should take up a hobby. I had been interested in screen printing for a while, and my friend Robin had said it was easy, so armed with her encouragement and the need to keep my mind clear I started learning about screen printing and started buying equipment and supplies.
My daughter Sarah Michael was interested in doing this new hobby with me, and we talked about designs we could make together.
But I didn’t end up with that much free time needing to be filled, I seemed to be pretty busy. We also had a nightmare home remodel that started in the winter of 2008 and so it took a while for the t-shirt shop idea to actually become a reality.
Finally this summer I started to put the T-shirt shop together and make sure we had all the stuff we needed. But what I really needed was something to motivate me to actually produce a design and make a shirt, and that something was a trip to San Francisco for a three-day outdoor music festival called Outside Lands. I thought it would be fun to screen print my own Outside Lands shirt design to wear to the shows, and it ended up being quite fun indeed!
I stayed up very late a few of nights before I left for my trip watching DVDs on the shirt-making process, then printing my design, exposing and washing out the the screen then finally printing onto some shirts. There was a lot to learn and do, but it was a lot of fun.
And I even had people comment to me on my shirts! Two different people came up to me and said “I didn’t see that shirt at the merchandise table.” I felt proud! I told them I designed and printed the shirt myself, but I didn’t bore them with the long drawn-out history.
Now I just need to keep making shirts, and start charging money for them too, cause if I don’t these Outside Lands shirts will be the most expensive pieces of clothing I have ever worn.