A few people lately have been telling me that I should get my act together and construct a BoC t-shirt store, and I think it makes sense -- I've done a lot of image-making the past four-plus years, and while certainly not all of it is going to be copyright-legal to throw onto a shirt and sell, there are certainly some designs I'd like to wear.
As a first exploratory step, I decided to assemble this brainstorming post about possible offerings -- I'm not 100% committed to see this through yet, but this seems a good place to start. I've combed through the blog archives and put together a whopping 25 t-shirt suggestions, some of which I had previously envisioned, and some of which just came from the process of skimming through archived posts -- this did sort of become a trip down memory lane.
Now I leave it to you, the readers, for step two. Here's the feedback I'm interested in, if you're willing -- (a) which of these possible designs would probably be legal for me to sell, either through SBN's vendor or through an outside party? (b) of the legal options, which would you be interested in buying? Obviously there's no commitment -- I have no idea what they cost or anything -- it's just to get a feeler of what sort of inventory we might run with.
I will warn Kings and Sharks fans -- by virtue of me being a Ducks fan, most of these cartoons will come from that Anaheim perspective -- it's not balanced at all, but I won't apologize for that. Let's begin the chronological adventure!
1. The Blog Logo Shirt: An obvious choice -- an easy and efficient way to let people know your blog allegiance!
Why it works: It's a classic blog fixture that represents the site, incorporates all three BoC teams, and nicely captures our mutual idiocy.
Why it doesn't work: The king comes almost directly from a King of Hearts (the "suicide king"). That won't be a problem, right?
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2. Kind of random, but I'd wear it: I still don't really know the true inspiration behind this piece of art from my old condo's garage wall, but it sure turned out epic.
Original source: Stupidity on my Garage Wall, Part 1, 9/11/06
Why it works: It's eye-catching and Lindros-bashing. What more do you need?
Why it doesn't work: Not sure who would sue us first, DC Comics or Carl Lindros? Probably not allowable.
3. The Original State Rape T-Shirt: There are other possibilities in this series, but my favorite has always been the original.
Original source: Now I'm going to hell for sure, 4/15/07
Why it works: This is one rare one that I envision as a two-sided shirt -- the shocking image up front and the multi-sport justification on the back. It works because it's awesome and there's some history to back it up.
Why it doesn't work: I don't know that there's a legal issue here -- seems state shapes are common enough for fair use. The hurdle is probably whether anybody wants to print the word "Rape" on a t-shirt.
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4. Mario Smash! Because you can't be a proper Ducks fan without hating the Red Wings.
Original source: Ducks Gameday—Wings logo: Separated at birth?, 5/11/07
Why it works: It features a good combination of hockey hatred and video game nostalgia.
Why it doesn't work: It involves Super Mario rather obviously, plus I'm not sure if team logos are a no-no. May not be available.
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5. A BoC Sidebar Tradition: Sometimes the simplest cartoons say it best. This I believe was my first cartoon after the Ducks' cup win.
Original source: Ducks take an early lead in the Battle of California, 6/8/07
Why it works: The drawing is awesome.
Why it doesn't work: This one should be completely legal -- no copyrights violated here!
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6. Celebrate Bad Puns: This one wasn't part of my original plan, but seeing it in the archives, it still makes me laugh. The Hybrid Goaltender -- part butterfly, part stand-up.
Original source: Scott skates! Sleek makes a cartoon!, 11/8/07
Why it works: It's team-neutral, well-drawn, and corny as hell. Plus you have to be a hockey fan for it to make any sense at all.
Why it doesn't work: It's corny as hell. But legal-wise, it's probably cool.
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7. Ducks/Kings Plagiarism Art: Two offerings here, both emerging from the same post. There's even a third option if you click through.
Original source: BoC Gameday—Ducks/Kings: Draw the Rivalry, 11/13/07
Why it works: I don't have a ton in the archives which is devoted strictly to Ducks/Kings, and both of these turned out great.
Why it doesn't work: I drew these by hand, but I was definitely looking at some Popeye and Simpsons source material.
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8. The Rudy Kelly Cartoon Shirt: I had to leave town for a few days, and Rudy offered to write the Ducks gameday post for an Anaheim-San Jose contest. This was one of the results.
Original source: BoC Gameday-Ducks/Sharks: Live in the Now, 11/17/07
Why it works: It's incredible how well he made the "I drew this on an Etch-A-Sketch" effect work, and the result is awesome.
Why it doesn't work: Absolutely nothing wrong with this one. It'll probably be a top-seller.
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9. Scott & Teemu's Excellent Adventure: Capture the timeless semi-retirement antics of Anaheim's two favorite future hall-of-famers. This is one of my favorite movie poster mockups.
Original source: Finnish Flashback, 1/28/08
Why it works: I like the way the player heads look, especially Chris Pronger in the phonebooth.
Why it doesn't work: Plagiarism abounds here -- too much stolen directly from the movie poster itself.
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10. Valentines Day T-Shirt: My other two-sided t-shirt design, though perhaps it would work out better if both the cartoon and the poem were put together on one side.
Why it works: The poem and cartoon are adorably hockey-cute. Also, it's team-neutral.
Why it doesn't work: This one is probably property of AOL, as that's where it debuted. Not sure if there's complications because of that.
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11. Brian Burke vs. Kevin Lowe: A classic GM vs. GM battle between two of the game's great blowhards. Two designs for this one, based on consecutive posts.
Original source: Worst. Episode. Ever., 7/8/08
Why it works: It's a nice nostalgia piece -- both guys are since removed from their respective positions, but for a while that was one of the main storylines that I covered. And this was my favorite set of graphics for that time period.
Why it doesn't work: Itchy, Scratchy, Poochie -- if Matt Groening is paying any attention, I'm probably screwed.
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12. NHL owners are crooks! This one was drawn specifically for Henry Samueli and his since-survived legal problems, but it works for any hockey owner, really. "Dad, why do NHL referees wear orange stripes on their sleeves?" "So they don't get mistaken for NHL owners."
Original source: Explaining the finer points of hockey to a new generation of fans, 9/11/08
Why it works: Cute little hairless characters, and a nice little punchline premise. It's timeless, too, so long as NHL owners continue to be criminals.
Why it doesn't work: Don't see any legal problems here that aren't wholly contained within the cartoon.
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13. Celebrating the Sharks-Ducks playoff series: I've put four offerings out for this one, but there's even more options if you click through. This is the culmination of all sorts of historical Ducks-vs-Sharks cartoons.
Original source: From the Sharks to the Wings: Destiny Continues, 4/29/09
Why it works: Take your pick -- that was a glorious age of cartooning and image adaptation.
Why it doesn't work: Absolutely nothing wrong with the first two, but the bottom two start treading on some pretty obvious South Park and Masters of the Universe themes. Still, I really hope the Joe Thornton one gets allowed.
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14. Ducks vs. Referees, the eternal struggle: A good design for any self-mocking Ducks fan.
Original source: SB Nation NHL Preview: Your 2009-10 Anaheim Ducks, 9/15/09
Why it works: For a fanbase that chants "Refs you suck" at least once per home game, this seems like it'd be a popular design to wear at Honda Center. Nicely drawn, too.
Why it doesn't work: Is the fact that the duck is wearing a Ducks jersey a problem?
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15. Making more fun of Minnesota: This one maybe even sells to Wild fans -- just strikes me as a great image combination.
Original Source: Ducks Gameday -- Lessons from the preseason: First Periods Matter, 10/6/09
Why it works: These two logo-characters were designed for each other -- funny and relatively seamless.
Why it doesn't work: Does Space Ghost have a good legal team? Well, if they don't, perhaps the Minnesota Wild has one.
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16. I found this randomly in the archives: I guess I've been in the t-shirt design business for longer than I thought.
Original source: Ducks Gameday -- Bad Starts Post-Lockout, 11/19/09
Why it works: It's based on an actual road trip, and the actual bitterness that followed. I guess it works for any pessimistic team.
Why it doesn't work: No cartoon.
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17. Spade's Douche Trick Shirt: I could have included a lot of Spade stuff here, but one that I still like is his stick-figure explanation of the "douche trick".
Original Source: Ducks Gameday -- First glance to the future, 12/3/09
Why it works: Clean and easy -- we know what's going on, and it doesn't hit on any copyright red flags. The t-shirt image sucks on this one -- here's a cleaner picture:
Why it doesn't work: I suppose somebody might not like printing the word "DOUCHE" on a shirt?
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18. Personalized Player Shirts: Giving players bad nicknames is fun, but even more fun is turning that nickname into an image. Here's a good way to celebrate some of Anaheim's role players.
Original source: Ducks Gameday -- Hittin' the Blooze, 1/23/10
Why it works: Both of these turned out pretty cool -- I'd definitely wear the Brookbank one.
Why it doesn't work: I really don't know what the rules are about movie posters and player faces -- probably not going to make it.
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19. Teemu-nator: Salvation: Similar to the last set, except this time with a much more popular player.
Original source: Ducks Gameday -- Must... Write... Tribute... Poem!, 3/21/10
Why it works: Playing at age 40, Teemu is part machine.
Why it doesn't work: Same concerns as last time, except this is an even more recent movie release.
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20. 2010 Postseason Shirt -- way too late! I threw this one into the mix because it does incorporate three characters, and here's one instance where Sharks or Kings fans have the upper edge -- they played in these playoffs.
Original source: BoC Gameday -- Prepping Kings fans for the postseason, 4/3/10
Why it works: It's got a nice logo feel to it, and I do like the fact that the couch is resting atop the state of California.
Why it doesn't work: I'm not sure which BoC fans really want to celebrate the 2010 playoffs.
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21. The BoC Quest For the Cup: This was probably this blog's most popular post, but strangely I don't know that it will make for its best-designed t-shirt. Still, there's plenty of cartoons there -- I forgot to include the choking shark as a second option.
Original Source: Cartoon Explosion: The BoC Quest for the Cup, 4/13/10
Why it works: To be honest, there's probably only a couple that work as standalone cartoons on a shirt -- a lot of it is dependent on the children's book narrative. Still, it is a classic.
Why it doesn't work: I dunno -- is it illegal to put an angry face on a Canadian flag?
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22. The Meddling Octopus: The follow-up post to the one above, this one also involved a lot of cartoons. Similarly, though, they may not work as well without text.
Original source: The BoC Quest for the Cup, Chapter 2: The Meddling Octopus, 4/29/10
Why it works: Everybody hates the Red Wings. Everybody.
Why it doesn't work: The octopus, without any text, doesn't truly represent the Wings as well as it could.
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23. Red Duck Redemption: After a cartoon-less stretch on a borrowed laptop, I finally bought a new one and got back into the scanning game. Unfortunately, my head was purely wrapped up in Red Dead Redemption, so the four cartoons in the post certainly reflect that.
Original Source: New Laptop + Old Scanner = Compatible!, 7/16/10
Why it works: Cartoons look good, and the hogtying of Bobby Ryan and the wooing of Teemu Selanne seem to have paid off.
Why it doesn't work: Image-wise, these are vague references to the Rockstar game, but I think they'd all safely be allowable. Still, it's a small audience that would really appreciate them.
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24. Sleek's Third Jersey Design: I'm not really sure about this at all -- it could turn out very stupid. But Arthur at AC claims that the SBN shirt store can make something out of this sketch.
Original source: Sleek Fanshot, 9/5/10
Why it works: I don't know that it does -- but I could simplify it and just use the webbed foot portion; that's been a great theme.
Why it doesn't work: I'd probably need to see this one in actual fabric to really know what it looks like.
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25. What might the future hold? What did I miss? This one's open-ended -- having seen these previous suggestions and thinking through what's probably allowable, is there a historical BoC cartoon that you think would make a good shirt? Is there a good cartoon idea you have that I should start drawing expressly for t-shirt purposes? I'm all ears.
Why it works: I haven't drawn any of these specifically for t-shirts; this could be a first.
Why it doesn't work: I'm one lazy fucker who can't be relied on for any serious effort, especially on assigned tasks.
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So that's the list -- I hope at the very least it was a fun trip back through the blog archives. So, should I move forward on this? Which design(s) appeal(s) most to you? What size do you wear? How much is in your wallet?
Haha, I kid. Open thread -- have at it.