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American Whitewater

We have had the pleasure of printing apparel for the Southeast chapter of American Whitewater for many years. Here is their mission statement, from their website:

Founded in 1954, American Whitewater is a national non-profit organization with a mission “to conserve and restore America’s whitewater resources and to enhance opportunities to enjoy them safely.” American Whitewater is a membership organization representing a broad diversity of individual whitewater enthusiasts, river conservationists, and more than 100 local paddling club affiliates across America. The organization is the primary advocate for the preservation and protection of whitewater rivers throughout the United States, and connects the interests of human-powered recreational river users with ecological and science-based data to achieve the goals within its mission.

This year, we were asked to create a shirt design to celebrate their work in the removal of “derelict” dams across the country (For example, here is an article from 2010, detailing the process of removing the Dillsboro Dam, on the Tuckaseegee River). The shirt design is below. Click on any of the images to enlarge.

And, if you would like one of your own, they are available for purchase at the American Whitewater online store.





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Brewgrass 2014 and more!

It’s been an extremely busy year here at Image 420. So busy that we’ve neglected our website. Well, no more! Here are some of the projects that we’ve done over the past few months:


The 2014 Brewgrass Festival

We were honored to create a bevy of designs for Asheville’s biggest and best beer festival. Here are three of the designs that were printed on commemorative shirts, and a proposed design that went unused (designs by Brent Baldwin).


Brewgrass 2014 alternate




We’re proud to say that we’ve provided design and print work for the Brewgrass Festival for over a decade. For more designs from years past, visit our design portfolio, or one of our posts about Brewgrass from years past.

CiderFest 2014

Speaking of festivals, CiderFest is a new one on the scene, focusing on the region’s growing craft cider business. We’ve provided the logo design, screen printed shirts, taster glasses, and more since the festival began (designs by Ike Wheeless).





Twisted Apple Ale

Speaking of apple cider, we got the opportunity to brand a new line of local apple ciders and ales. Be on the lookout for Twisted Apple Ale, in stores soon (design by Brent Baldwin).

Twisted Apple

Joe Lasher, Jr.

Here are some shirts designs we worked up for local Country music upstart Joe Lasher, Jr (designs by Ike Wheeless).





Image 420 “Bride of Frankie”

Sometimes, we even get a moment to design something for ourselves. We’ve had a theme of movie monsters running through our “shop” shirts for years. This shirt is intended to be something of a companion piece to our “Frankie” shirts (originally printed back in 2008). It will be available for purchase soon in our online store.


Image 420 "Bride"



There are more new designs over on our Portfolio page, if you’re interested. And for those of you that are interested in learning a bit more about graphic design, we’ve recently updated the most popular page on our website, our Vector Art explanation and diagnosis tutorial. Thanks, and Happy Thanksgiving!

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Pawnstorm Process Video

This year, we’ve partnered with our friends at Short Street Cakes to sponsor the Chess Club at Hall Fletcher Academy. While printing the shirts and hoodies for the team, one of our printers shot this video of the entire printing process. From the preparation of the screens, to the the finished product, it’s all in here, edited into one bite-bized serving.

So, if you’ve never had the chance to witness the process, now’s your chance.

(note: the creator of the video wished to remain anonymous. However, it’s worth noting that the video, editing, and soundtrack were all produced by him.)


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Moonshiner 28 (update)

UPDATED August 14, 2013

Here is our latest design for Moonshiner 28, entitled “Skullcrackers.” Based on a concept brought in by the customer, and digitally painted in Photoshop by in-house graphic designer Brent Baldwin. For the original Moonshiner design, scroll down. For more information about Moonshiner 28, click here.



Our good friends Ron and Nancy from Tail of the Dragon (who we profiled on our site last year as well) are embarking on a new project, promoting a 103-mile stretch of Highway 28 that runs between Deals Gap, North Carolina and Walhalla, SC. They’re calling this road the Moonshiner, and are giving the road the full “Tail of the Dragon” treatment, offering visitors maps, lodging information, commemorative collectables, and more.

Here’s a description, from their website:

Once one of the major runs for moonshiners with revenuers hot on their bumper, the road today boasts some great twisties, wide sweepers and unsurpassed scenery. Mountain vistas, waterfalls and secluded lakes appear around nearly every corner. You can find good food, accommodations of every type and unique shops with unusual antiques and crafts created by mountain artisans.

Here is the design for the very first Moonshiner 28 shirt, designed in-house at Image 420.

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Mt. Mitchell Challenge (UPDATED)

UPDATED March 22, 2013

The 2013 Mount Mitchell Challenge design, by in-house designer Ike Wheeless.


mt mitchell challenge pic13


It’s that time of year. The good people with the Mount Mitchell Challenge came to us again for a design/print for the very tough marathon that happens in February every year. We make it our own little challenge to incorporate the famous mountain tops and flying ravens into the design. We kept it simple and went with a 2-color design but incorporated some halftones to add a little depth.

Check out this video link, shot by a participant, to see if you’re up for the challenge next year. You’ll get a sweet t-shirt if you make it!

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A.C. Reynolds Middle School Band (UPDATED)

For the fifth year in a row, we’ve designed and printed shirts for the A.C. Reynolds Middle School band. From the start, this project has been surprisingly unique, and has turned into a great shared tradition between us and the band. Every year, we get to do a memorable and unique design for these kids, and it’s a really fun design project for our Art Department.

From the start, the idea began with the band’s director, Greg Love. He wanted themes from classic rock album covers, mashed up with their school’s mascot, the Rockets. He gave our Art Department complete creative license (which we love, obviously). From that great starting point, we decided to use Astronauts as the theme, since we would be able to use them in place of the people on various classic rock album covers.

UPDATED January 24, 2013: The design for the 2012-2013 school year has been added. Scroll to the bottom of the page for more.

For the first year’s design, former Image 420 graphic designer Jeremy Boger chose The Who. After looking through his personal record collection, he chose this album cover as the basis for his design:

the who max rnb

Here is what Jeremy came up with:

And here’s the shirt, modeled by the band:

A simple, direct, and effective design. It was also a huge hit with the kids, so we got the call again the next year. For this design Jeremy started with perhaps the most classic of all classic album covers:

And here is the epic result:

For the third year, the kids became a little more involved in the process of selecting a theme. That was great, because it really let us know that they were into it, and were enjoying their shirts. They gave us a list of potential candidates, and from that list, we chose a slightly more modern classic:

Here’s the result, by graphic designer Israel Hill:

Which brings us to this year. The kids are now “all-in” on the design selection process. They sent one idea, and it was a great idea. The design was to be based around this classic rock poster, for The Grateful Dead:

The kids chose well! In the fourth year of this project, their selections perfectly match the theme, and the things that make it work: a classic design, with a central human figure that can be swapped out with an astronaut. Here’s the result, by designer Brent Baldwin:

UPDATE!  For the 2012-2013 school year, the kids chose No, by They Might Be Giants. Here is the original cover:

tmbg no

And here is the tribute design, by Brent Baldwin:


So, once again, we’d like to thank the kids of the A.C. Reynolds Middle School Band, and their director, Greg Love, for letting us make these shirts for them every year. As designers, and lovers of classic design, it’s so much fun to work on designs like this. And it’s great to be have the creative flexibility and trust that we’ve been given by these kids. We hope to do many more of these fantastic shirts in the future.

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November Already?

2012 has really flown by at Image 420. It’s only now, as the the year is slowing down, that we realize just how busy this year has been for us. Naturally, in our rush to design and print shirts, we’ve neglected to update our website, and our Facebook profile, and so on. Don’t get us wrong, being too busy to post status updates is a good kind of problem. But now,  with Thanksgiving just around the corner, it’s time to update this blog.

And hey, speaking of Thanksgiving, check out these Turkey Trot shirts we just printed for our good friends and longtime clients at Jus’ Running



The Turkey Trot design is by local designer Christina Papandrea.

Here’s another recent print, for Smoky Mountain Steel Horses, based out of Waynesville, NC. Original designer unknown.


And finally, we’re currently working on a long overdue update to our online portfolio. That should do it for now. Thanks for stopping by!

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Best Of WNC 2012

UPDATE: The official list is up on the Xpress website. You can check it out here.

As many of you already know, the Mountain Xpress (our local alt-weekly newspaper) conducts a reader poll every year, to determine the local businesses, bands, and people that will make up their annual “Best of WNC” list. Up until this year, there was no category for Image 420 to win. But this year, the Mountain Xpress added a “Best Print Shop” category. And we tied for first place!

Unfortunately, the list has yet to make it onto their website. But it is currently on newsstands in WNC. For those of you who live too far away to pick up a copy of the Xpress, here are the official rankings:

First Place (tied): Henco Reprographics and Image 420 Screen Printing

Second Place: Printville

Third Place (tied): Graphics Four and Allegra Asheville

And here’s the blurb they wrote about us, which encapsulate the philosophy of our business pretty well, we think:

The online portfolio for Image 420 Screenprinting, a pioneering Haywood Road business, reads like a survey of area culture. The graphics firm has produced posters, t-shirts and other promotional materials for bands, festival, bike and road races and even Mission Hospitals. According to its website, Image 420 is “based around the belief that screenprinting can be an art form, an advertising media and a vehicle for the growth of any business.”

And to that, we plan on holding true, no matter where we land in next year’s poll. Thank you to all of you who voted for us, and to all of our fantastic customers. We’re proud of our small victory, but are far more proud of the sentiment behind your votes.


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Brewgrass 2012

Once again, summer has begun it’s slow transition into fall, and for us, that means one thing: it’s time to print Brewgrass shirts. And glasses. And stickers. And so on.

For the 16th year of this venerable Asheville festival, we created a very flexible and textured design, so that with one simple ink change, looks completely different on the four available shirt colors.

We’re extremely proud to be the people responsible for the design and the printing of these shirts since 2001.

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Lusty Monk!

There’s an excellent article in the Asheville Citizen Times about one of our favorite customers, Kelly Davis, of Lusty Monk Mustard.

We’ve been printing Lusty Monk shirts, aprons and thongs (!!!) for a few years now, and we’re always delighted when Kelly drops by the shop to pick up her orders. In part, it’s because there’s always a chance that she might leave us with a few jars of her delicious mustard. But also, she has a sparkling demeanor, and it’s always nice to have a chance to talk to her.

You can check out the article here. And if you’ve never had any Lusty Monk mustard, order a jar for yourself, and you’ll find out what all the fuss is about.