Dane Clement has been an art guru for over 20 years and his passion for educating is no secret. This webinar was created to help you break through design hurdles and have you producing the ultimate artwork for your customers with ease! Dane will give you tips and tricks and share insider secrets that help you create killer designs from the very first print. Create the art you want — quickly, efficiently, and with confidence.

  • Learn how to create clean, scalable art — any size and any output
  • See why Photoshop® is the industry standard in digital art creation
  • Easily identify your customer’s art file type
  • Discover the difference between hi-res and low-res
  • Prevent banding in your art

If you’re new to printing DTG, don’t miss out on Dane’s newest book, Artwork for DTG. This book expands on even more details and ways to create art for DTG printing, with easy referencing — right at your fingertips!

No matter your printing method, Dane has you covered! Check out the other available resources and get ready to build your skills.

If you haven’t had a chance to check it out already, industry expert Dane Clement has a featured article in this month’s Impressions Magazine. The article, titled The Importance of Artwork, walks you through understanding artwork trends and breaks down how to create great art for use with various materials and processes.

Artwork trends come from many different areas and paying attention to these trends – keeping your finger on the pulse – is important to your long-term success. As a decorator, you want to offer your customers what they want when they’re ready to buy it, and not have them go elsewhere to find it.

But on top of understanding and staying on top of trends, Dane stresses, “It’s important to realize how each decorating method requires you to think differently about the art you will design so that embellishing products is an easier task.”

Knowing what kind of art you need and where you’re going to put it is probably the most important thing to consider. The type of fabric and garment color affects how artwork is prepared and which artwork you’ll choose. In this article, he walks you through the types of printing processes available and what goes best with which material.

For example, Dane mentions “each decorating process has its own strengths and weaknesses, with vinyl cutting being the easiest and probably most versatile.” He then goes on to discuss the two popular trends of polyester and performance materials as well as the new trend of water-based, high-solid acrylic inks.

You’ll definitely want to check this article out if you’re looking for more information about artwork trends and how to create great art on many different materials.

Heat printing equipment? Check. Excitement for an apparel decorating project? Check. What else would you need? Why, awesome artwork!

In this business, artwork can prove to be a top challenge. Factors to consider when deciding on the right design include cost versus quality and the complexity of the design.

More often than not, the cost of artwork is dependent upon how long it takes to create it. An experienced designer may charge more for their services but require less time; whereas a designer that has less experience may take longer, but ultimately cost more. Customers can also play a role in the cost of artwork by wanting a design that is very detailed and/or unique. Money can be wasted trying to fulfill a customer’s wish. To avoid this, be sure to ask a lot of questions, provide a lot of examples, limit the number of revisions, and get the customer’s artwork approval in writing.

Having an understanding of artwork categories can prove to be invaluable. These categories provide a guideline to use when determining what level of artist you will need and how much the artwork will cost. Here’s the breakdown:

Category 1:         The budget-conscious customer needing a simple line art design using one color.

Category 2:         A customer needing multi-color artwork.

Category 3:         A customer that takes Category 2 to the next level by needing a series of complimentary designs or multiple versions of the same design.

Category 4:         This customer needs a lot of detail and process colors in the artwork; this is the most expensive of the four categories.

It’s vital to know what you need and how fast you need it when choosing artwork that works best for both your business and your customer. Click here to read the full article from Printwear magazine.

Figuring out where the artwork comes from and how to properly convert it to be used by the desired output device is one of the first steps a decorator must take for imprinting apparel. With digital printing, artwork is sent to a printer and either printed directly on a garment or on transfer paper which is then heat sealed to the garment.

There are four types of printing processes:

Digital Transfer (sublimation, inkjet, and color laser printer) – This is an indirect printing method where the artwork is printed onto a carrier paper to create a transfer. The transfer is placed on the garment and heat pressed to seal it.

Digital Direct-to-Garment (DTG) – With this method, the artwork is printed directly onto the garment with an inkjet device.

Vinyl Cutting – This is an indirect printing method that requires a vinyl cutter. Sheets or rolls of vinyl are inserted into a cutter and a blade cuts out shapes that make up the artwork. These shapes need to be weeded (remove the excess vinyl from the design) then heat applied to a garment using a heat press.

Printer/Cutter – This printing method combines the process of a digital transfer and vinyl cutter. A design is printed onto material and then cut to the contours of the design.

Raster art is recommended for digital printing. Vector art can be used, but avoid using vector art when the design has any large solid areas. It’s also recommended to use RGB color mode versus CMYK. The size and resolution for digital artwork is the same as screen printing. Typically, the artwork should be prepared no smaller than 300 dpi at 14 x 14 inches; this is considered a high resolution file. When the artwork is created, it should be done as a mirror image. Otherwise the text/graphic will appear backwards once applied to the garment.

A best practice is to avoid designing anything with a solid flat area of color, which can sometimes result in banding or streaking when using an inkjet or toner drum. This can be very obvious and take away from the desired design. Another best practice is to remove edges and background areas around the perimeter of the design so you don’t have a solid border around the artwork; this creates a more free-flowing look.

Vinyl cutting is a great way to achieve a layered look, however, limit yourself to three layers to avoid a heavy-handed design. Also, use graphics and text that are weed-friendly so you don’t have to struggle pulling out non-essential pieces of your artwork. A tip for creating artwork that will be cut with a vinyl cutter is to include little “connectors” from one part of the design to another so the excess can be pulled off in one motion. Try to limit the amount of cavities within your design to make weeding less tedious. If you have lines in your artwork, make sure the line weights are thicker so they stay on the carrier and don’t curl up when you are trying to heat apply. To cut your design in a continuous outline, make sure to merge separate elements together.

Regardless of the printing process you choose, there will always be some trial and error. But with the tips above, you now have a head start.

Click here to read the full article featured in the Fall 2017 edition of the SGIA Journal.