Design Tips: I Have Become Halftone, Destroyer of Shirts... (Part One)

awesome info and tutorial!

This is great stuff! I know some of us lesser artists think we need to use halftones to compete; but that ends up flooding the derbies with some awful looking designs. I actually prefer little to none, even in some designs by the more famous artists. :wink:

I’m not going to lie, I smiled at this title, because it’s true. Most people use halftones like T-Pain uses vocodor: egregiously and uninformedly.

Now, you know what would be great, having now posted this blog, is if from now til woot shutters, there was a “no ugly halftones” rule. Not only could you save yourself from the fact that most voters are impressed by halftones the way they’re impressed by a 5 year old playing Moonlight Sonata sloppily, but entire dynasties of sloppy and overused halftoning could be eliminated for the sake of better work.

I guess that’s a pie-in-the-sky dreamworld.

nice tips. and when in grayscale, I’ve found the dodge and burn tools to really help a lot in shaping the gradient that will become the halftones.

Bless you for this.

For those of us with silly opensource propensities: Halftone plugin for

I just get so frustrated when they don’t look like I want them to. I guess it just takes a lot of practice to push them around in a way that makes them look… not slapped on.

If you don’t want hand position your halftones, which just thinking about is making me want to murder. All you have to is select the grey layer in the layer menu, right click the layer and choose “Duplicate Layer” then in the menu that pops up under “Document” choose “New”.

It will make a new document the exact same size as the old document. Then when you are finished with your half tone magic you can easily select all(ctrl+A), copy everything(ctrl+C), and return to the original file to paste it(ctrl+V) back directly over where it was originally. Then select all the white and delete to leave beautiful perfectly placed halftones. No fiddling and lining up required. =D

Q**P! Thanks Diana!

I’ve yet to try a shirt design in Photoshop, but I might have to give it a try sometime. This is definitely going to be bookmarked for future reference!

The use of the opening to Choke really offends me. It’s not even ironic it’s just wrong.

Thanks tons, Travis! This helps my understanding quite a bit. Yes, I know, halftones are probably the bane of Man. But sometimes you just gotta have more colors. For example, my (inept) sub this week: I’d used all six colors, but absolutely had to have a flesh tone or my senorita would have looked like a ghost. I may not have done it well, but I think I at least did it appropriately. :slight_smile:

Choke?.. Haven’t read it.

For extra credit, can you show the Illustrator tutorial for halftones?

I’m not an artist, but it’s interesting to look at the technical process . . . . now you just need to follow-up and include a “no halftones” rule in the next few derbies. :stuck_out_tongue:

Not sure what Choke is, or why it would be offensive, but the opening is all Oppenheimer(yes, I AM Captain Obvious, thanks for noticing):

Maybe a Spiderman quote would be less offensive?
“With great halftone power, there must come great halftone responsibility”

You should then. It’s a great book!

“If you’re going to read this, don’t bother”

I haven’t read it either, but the plot summary sounded pretty intriguing.

Alternately, you can delete the white in the “new” document and then “duplicate layer” back to your working document to get things in the right place. Both methods are essentially the same, don’t know if one is inherently easier or faster than the other.