Dividing Face T-Shirt Illustration
completed October 2019 for Richmond VA rock band, Dividing Face
Shortly after my spouse and I moved to southern Virginia, we learned that Nonpoint was going to be performing at The Canal Club in Richmond. He visited the event’s Facebook page and asked if anyone had extra tickets or were willing to trade for tickets to attend. Sonny Mao, the bass player for one of the opening bands, Dividing Face, messaged him. He’d looked through some of my work and offered 4 free tickets in exchange for a T-shirt design. We were totally sold.
The band gave me total creative control with one stipulation: keep the number of colors low to help them keep printing costs low. I decided I’d go no higher than 2 colors.
My spouse and I sat down to discuss different directions we could take. I’d considered a tattoo-like approach of a human skull with skin sewn on half of it, but that felt a little too on-the-nose. Since their logo is happy/sad theatre faces, I avoided that direction, too. I wanted to give them something different to work with.
I started looking at different wild animals for inspiration. The half-skull, half-face idea felt more fresh when combined with non-human animals. While brainstorming with my spouse, we considered bears and wolves. Suddenly a light bulb clicked over his head and he looked at me. “You know what creatures are terrifying? Baboons.”
Baboons are the last of the old-world monkeys and have incredibly expressive faces that can be utterly terrifying when teeth are bared in a snarl. They seemed like the perfect “bad-ass animal” to portray a hard rock band called Dividing Face.
The design was met with no changes from the band, and the T-shirts are a fan favorite at shows.
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