I had to design some t-shirts for work with a comic book / superhero look for our volunteers. The associated website is everydayheroes.me. The volunteers are our everyday heroes and the assignment was to use the EH, making into something similar to the S for Superman. The turnaround time was quick on these, so not much design time.
Here’s what I came up with:
After getting teased about the design using the EH with everyone walking around with their hand cupped over their ear saying “ehh?”, someone said the ultimate, horrific words… Ed Hardy. I’m pretty sure I threw up in my mouth a little bit.
So why does this bother me? You should read my blog post on iembracechaos.com to fully understand, but here’s an excerpt:
…what statement are we making by wearing it?
- I support financial insanity
- Food… $12, gas… $40, mortgage payment with late fees… $2367, Ed Hardy t-shirt… priceless
- My shirt cost more than yours! 😛
- The tattoo would have been cheaper
- So what, my parents paid for it
I could add to this list. I guess when they saw the shirt, maybe they saw something like this:
Yes, that’s a menorah. I’m pretty sure Ed has his name on just about everything. What is so desirable about a shirt (or other Ed stuff) that costs a ridiculous amount of money and everyone is already wearing? Don’t get me wrong, I like the artwork, and the quality of the stuff is good, but why does our society idolize it? As far as I know, Ed is not supporting anything good with his money… the probably 90% profit he’s making.
So who owns E.H.? Who knows, he could have copyrighted the initials, but E.H. has now become an icon. Just like the smiley face and Walmart. (yes, that’s a blog post too on iembracechaos.com) Whether or not Ed technically owns EH, make no mistake, he owns EH. We all get sucked into the marketing world, a culture where everything is well advertised and heavily sponsored. Stadiums are named after soft drink companies, generic brands have large chain store names branding them and let’s not forget that WalMart in Frisco is on WalMart street and Ikea is on Ikea drive. Even the paid camps for kids are sponsored by many businesses, all competing for space on the back of the camp t-shirts. What happened to the good old days of propaganda? Today, that would be something like this:
Okay, so today I’m belly-aching. I’ll stop, but I do need to say that this saddens me. I want to be stylish and wear fun clothing, but I want to make the statement that I shop smart, I support good causes and I sport some creativity in my choices. People don’t know, when they see my Ed shoes, that I got them for free. Yes, I’m against Ed here, and have used him as my ‘bad example’, but what I’m trying to say here is that we should all support retailers and brands that are supporting good causes and not ripping off shoppers to make large profits.
Here’s a photo I had in a gallery showing a few years ago I thought you might enjoy.
Blog post sponsored by trashsociety.com, a division of iembracechaos.com, and a subsidiary of the guy that designed and owns the original smiley face. ©®™♥