Steve Ardo

Merchandise Design

One of my favorite parts of my job as a graphic designer is when I can bring illustration into a project. I started out designing merchandise for musicians before branching off into not-for-profit and nonprofit organizations. My first project was creating a drawing for a T-shirt designed by Satellite High, a San Francisco-based hip-hop artist, for a song of his that was featured on the podcast Welcome to Nigh Vale. From there, I’ve worked with a local punk band Accidentals in creating a line of merchandise centered around their mascot, a skeleton Halloween decoration nicknamed Sir Jonathan Gary Beckworth V. I then designed T-shirts and pins for wrestlers from Empire State Wrestling before being asked to submit my art for 26 Shirts. For each local sports team-related shirt sold through them, a portion of the sale would go to an individual or charity in need. Finally, my most recent merchandise project was with Evergreen Health Services for their 24th Annual AIDS Walk Buffalo in 2016. The walk itself is the health provider’s biggest fundraiser to help provide much-needed resources and treatment for individuals with and impacted by HIV and AIDS. Drawing has always been a passion of mine; I’m extremely grateful that I get to incorporate it into my career as a way to help out communities.