Category Archives: KONG Work

TOMS card

TOMS Shoes is launching their new Austin store on March 11th, 2014 on S. Congress. To celebrate the new launch, TOMS collaborated with Alyson Fox, an Austin based designer who has worked with the likes of West Elm and Hawkins New York. Her work has been profiled in the Elle, The New York Times, Vogue, Style and many others.

 

When TOMS contacted Kong about printing Alyson’s designs on 150 pair of their classics, we didn’t hesitate. A first round of prototyping proved challenging as the shoes are designed with a raised seam that traverses the front toe cap. The problem was how to get the squeegee to ride evenly over the front of the shoe so that the right amount of ink could be deposited and provide a sharp crisp look to  Alyson’s minimal design. Initial tests were promising, but we knew we would have to work very hard to make printing on an after production shoe look seamless.

Kong prototypes

 

Kong’s printers and problems solvers, Brian Phillips, Bruce Braden and Katie Neustaedter  put their heads together and devised a system that got us the high quality results we demand of ourselves. In particular, Brian built a custom printing template that would allow for precise placement of the graphic with just the right amount of ink to make the design pop. We would tell you how he did it, but we’d have to. . .well, you know.

 

Kong and TOMS were quite pleased with the results – 150 limited edition Classics that will be available at the launch of TOMS new store on March 11th. We hope to see you at the launch!

Alyson Fox TOMS classic Front

TOMS Alyson Fox Shoes

 

 

We’ve been rockin’ on a new project lately… printing on something we’ve not printed on before (we do that around here a lot)….a custom guitar by Moniker.

Custom Screenprinted Guitar by Kong and Moniker

We’re pleased to introduce “If It Ain’t Broke, Make It Better.” Here’s what Moniker’s luthiers had to say about the design, “The combination of the plaid with the text immediately reminded us of The Mighty Mighty Bosstones’ ska-punk style. We decided to pair it with a black trim around the sides and mix-and-match black and gold hardware. Only one pickup was used, a Moniker humbucker in the bridge, order to keep the design balanced with the text.”

Moniker by Kong

Moniker by Kong

The guitar will be unveiled tonight at Up Collective gallery for the HandPlayed exhibition. Local artists and designers such as Brian Phillips, Bob Schneider, MakeATX, Brian David Johnson and Sophie Roach were asked to design one of a kind guitars. You can read more about the artists here.

The opening tonight kicks off an auctionfor these one of a kind guitars and proceeds benefit the Austin Music Foundation.  The Auction runs through Dec. 15.

See all of the guitars and bid on them HERE.

 

The Austin Music Foundation (AMF) is a 501c3 nonprofit that provides free business education for Austin’s musicians and the music industry. AMF’s number of clients has increased nearly 300% since opening the Creative Media Center two years ago and needs to expand!

Fortunately, AMF has obtained a 15 year rent free lease at South Shore District, East Austin’s newest luxury apartment and mixed-use complex, located on East Riverside. The new South Shore location will be the new home for AMF’s Creative Media Center (CMC), providing intimate work sessions with experts in the music industry. AMF will also utilize the new space to enhance its Music Industry Collaborative (MIC), Leaders in Austin Music (LIAM) and other programs.

AMF is asking its supporters to invest in Austin Music and help fund the cost of the building/finish out on the new building. This is a huge opportunity for AMF’s growth and ability to continue to serve musicians and enhance Austin’s music-driven economy for years to come!

Kong Artist Series

Kong is excited to announce our new project, launching  11.15.2013.  Has Launched. You’ll be able to see the first editions at our studios during the East Austin Studio Tour starting tomorrow. See the shirts now by clicking here.

We’re taking art off the wall and putting it on you!

The Kong Artist Series (#KAS) is an ongoing collaborative series between Kong Screenprinting and leading contemporary artists.  Kong invites an established or emerging artist to design a series of shirts, focused on a theme of subject the artist selects. No limitations are placed on subject matter. Artist are encouraged to experiment with the T-shirt as a venue for their concept and aesthetics, and to use it as a way to build more intimate connections with the wearer.

The designs are printed on the finest garments with premium inks and the utmost attention of Kong’s Master Printers. Initial runs of each design will be 60 shirts, which are published as open editions. Every detail has been considered. Our approach is simple – use the highest highest quality garments and processes possible, and let the art shine.

Garments tell as story about who we are and what we care about in the world. The Kong Artist Series appeals to people who realize that graphics can project quality, intellect, humor and beauty. If you’re looking for something unique, the Kong Artist Series will offer you new ways to break the mold.

To launch the series, Kong has selected three artists – Jiha Moon, M-lon (AKA Miguel Gonzalez)  and Kristofer Porter. Here’s a sneak peak of what’s to come:

Sneak Peak of Jiha Moon Art #KAS

Sneak Peak of M-lon Art #KAS

Sneak Peak of Kristofer Porter Design #KAS

Sneak Peak of Kristofer Porter Art#KAS

 

Kong recently completed printing 14,000 flags for this upcoming installation on Lady Bird Lake. This temporary art installation will be on view publicly for three months this fall. Women & Their Work invited visual artist, Beili Liu, (as lead artist), Emily Little and Norma Yancey (architecture), and Cassie Bergstrom (landscape architecture) to collaborate and the project, THIRST, was created. This large scale, site specific installation is located on Lady Bird Lake. THIRST memorializes the loss of the over 300 million trees that died in the drought of 2011. – quoted text from Women and Their Work’s Website. Please visit to learn more about this project.

Here’s a short video of the prayer flag hanging test:

Over the last two months, Kong has been printing a custom line of apparel for the startup Girls Will Be. Their mission is to create clothes that break free of the stereotypical girly styles dominating retail today. Girls Will Be is committed to providing girls more options to express their individuality with colors and designs that go beyond pink, girly embellishments and gender stereotypes.

highres_113_scKong worked diligently to customize every aspect of the printing of this line of 14 new designs. Girls Will Be founder, Sharon Choksi was onsite in the press room, working  with our team to make sure each color was perfect, each placement exact and that every detail of this Made in the USA (and printed in Texas!) product was high quality and fun. Please visit the Girls Will Be website and store. We’re sure you’ll find something special for that little girl you know who prefers to express her individuality in a color other than pink!

You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter.

We recently worked up some designs for our client who was celebrating her thirtieth birthday. Her plans for celebration were to drive to Marfa, TX with family and friends to see the sites and the wonderful art that has blossomed in the W. Texas desert. The concept of the shirt was to play off Ed Ruscha‘s use of screenprinting and words while incorporating the feeling of light that the landscape can offer.

Dirty Thirty in West Texas Shirts

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday, Katie!

Showing off their Kong style in front of the Prada store.

Kong’s Ryan Burkhart was recently invited to UNT in Denton to produce a limited edition of prints with visual artist, Scott Ingram. The residency was one week long and yielded 2 finished editions of prints. Ryan and Scott gave a public talk about the collaboration and production of the prints. They also were excited to have a public opening at the end of the residency to show off the new prints that are published by P.R.I.N.T.  Thanks to UNT and Director Lari Gibbons for hosting us and for making this project possible.

 

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Lari Gibbons and Scott Ingram.

Lari Gibbons and Scott Ingram.

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Editing the edition

Editing the edition

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Ryan presenting the staff at P.R.I.N.T. with new Kong Shirts.

Ryan presenting the staff at P.R.I.N.T. with new Kong Shirts.