Interview: Tom Trager

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Published by David O'Donnell in Interview                      Disclosure: post may contain affiliate links

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Today I present our interview with Tom Trager: comedy writer, animator, graphic designer and all in all a very nerdy guy (his own words!) His designs are inspired by some of the best televisions series of our time, and we’ve featured many of his awesome designs in our Doctor Who, Breaking Bad, and Dexter t-shirt lists. His popular designs have earned him a reputation as one of the best designers on Red Bubble, without further ado, here’s my interview with Tom.

How would you introduce yourself and your art to people who may not familiar with you?

I would freestyle rap about myself, awkwardly, until whoever is listening would pay me to stop.

How did you get started designing t-shirts?

As a designer I was just trying to expand my artistic/geeky horizons. So I started teaching myself how to design a good shirt. I’m a huge fan of the medium, I have like, 50-70 geeky pop culture tees in my closet.

What inspires your work?

TV mostly. I’m an obsessive TV geek, I love Arrested Development, Buffy, The IT Crowd, Doctor Who and many many more, so I just have to express my fandom somehow and I guess that’s my way of doing it.

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Can you give us any insight into your creative process?

Well it’s basically like this: Binge watch a show >>> annoy all my friends as I can’t shut up about it >>> design 3-4 tees just to get the fandom out of my system >>> live in isolation and cry.

Which is your favorite design of your own?

I love them all as if they were my children! that’s an evasive way of saying “I really don’t know”.

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Which has been your most successful design to-date?

The “Time-y Wimey” one. It’s funny because I never thought anyone would care for it. Turns out it’s a hit.

Who are some of your favorite artists?

Saul Bass is a huge source of inspiration. He’s brilliant, him and Shakira.

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Can you tell us a little about your web cartoon, Ahmed & Salim?

It’s an animated sitcom about two terrorist kids who don’t really wanna be terrorists, they just wanna play Nintendo Wii all day and watch “Gilmore Girls”.

And also your non-animated youtube videos? I thought the ‘First World Problems’ video was hilarious!

It’s actually not my first non-animated video, it’s just the first one in a very long time. I started animating because filming and producing is really hard where in animation, if I need an actor or a location I just draw it. It’s awesome. And thank you for liking it! Now it’s you AND my mom.

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What are some of your interests outside of art?

TV….and uh….TV…and also…umm… oh god my life is empty.

What are your vices?

Does setting people on fire count?

Hypothetical dinner party, you and any two people, dead or alive, who do you choose?

Joss Whedon and Mitch Hurwitz. The genius behind “Buffy” and the genius behind “Arrested Development”

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Are you currently working on anything we should keep an eye out for?

No. But let’s pretend that I am so it would sound like I’m actually doing something with my life.

Thanks Tom, appreciate your time and can’t wait to see what you come up with next!

Make sure you checkout all of Tom’s awesome designs at his RedBubble store here.

Keep up to date with the latest from Tom on
Twitter: @TomTrager
Tumblr: tomtrager.tumblr.com

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