Daniele Quartu is a talented artist/designer from Italy whose work I have been familiar with for many years. Daniele has a recognizable style for the most part but he is still quite a versatile artist as you will see when you browse through the large collection of Letter-Q t-shirts on the Shirt List. Daniele Quartu aka Letter-Q is prolific as well as talented which is a great combination.
Letter-Q designs are mostly pop culture related and he can make just about anything look adorable. I mean check out the image of a Xenomorph devouring Space Invaders below. It reminds me of a puppy playing with a new toy. Read on to learn more about Letter-Q.
I guess the Q in Letter-Q is from your surname but that’s as far as my powers of deduction get me. Can you explain where “Letter-Q” came from?
You guessed it right indeed. Q is the first letter in my surname. I never liked this nickname but I started to be known as Letter-Q in the online t-shirt scene and I couldn’t change it. But I don’t like it.
Where were you born/raised/live?
I’m Italian, born and raised in Rome. Now I’m based in London. Moved to the British capital 7 years ago, and I love it!
What do you like to do in your free time?
I love music and I enjoy mixing and producing music for fun. I’m far from being a musician but I’m pretty creative in this field too.
I also love climbing/bouldering.
Do you work full-time in art and design?
At the moment, yes. I draw all the time and I love it.
About the Artist
When did you know that you wanted to be an artist?
I started drawing as soon as I could hold a pencil in my hand. I made my parents spend a fortune on sketchbooks, pencils, markers and colors.
There is no day when I decided it. It just happened naturally.
Apart from t-shirts, are you involved in other art/design projects?
Everything that involves creativity and drawing catches my attention. T-shirts of course, but also book or record covers, card and table games.
Designing characters and monsters for video games would be my dream job.
You have a distinct style. Were you influenced by any particular artist or style?
I don’t think so. I can’t think of any particular artist or style that influenced me.
Where do you usually get your inspiration?
I get it from everything; music, people, video games, tv shows, movies. Everything can stimulate your creativity and motivation.
Could you describe your typical design process from concept to completion?
I always start with a sketch on paper. Then I move to Adobe Illustrator to do the linework, which I like to be crispy and dry. Then I do all the coloring process in Photoshop. The design obviously develops a bit during the process, but sometimes the final result is completely different from the initial sketch or from what I had in mind at all!
About the T-Shirts
How did you first hear about daily t-shirt sites like TeeFury and RIPT?
I was just surfing the net looking for opportunities to use my art and making a bit of income out of that, and I bumped in some daily sites. I don’t remember which one I discovered first, to be honest, but I’m sure it was either TeeFury or Shirt.Woot.
Do you remember your first print? If so, what was it and how did you feel?
Well, my first print was a design called Alien Eats Alien (see attachment) and it was really exciting. I never though it would have been just the first of many!
You have had t-shirts printed by various daily t-shirt sites. Who do you usually submit to first? Why?
The t-shirt scene has changed a lot in the last few years. Daily sites don’t sell as much as they use to and now I prefer to put my designs on Print on Demand sites first. Before, my first choices were Teefury and Woot for sure!
Of the t-shirts that you designed, which one is your favorite?
Well, I have two. Gamer Forever (which is the one I love the most, being a former gamer myself) and Neverending Fight (which sold around 3000 shirts on TeeFury some years ago… I couldn’t believe it).
Do you wear the t-shirts that you have designed?
Yeah sometimes 🙂 But I mostly give them to my friends.
Have you seen somebody wearing one of your t-shirts in the real world?
Not in person, but I have seen a few shirts I designed on TV! The last one was spotted in this Netflix series called Santa Clarita Diet.
Here is the show trailer:
Photoshop or Illustrator?
Blondes or Brunettes? Chocolate or Hazelnut? Can’t answer this. Love both.
About the World
What is the most exotic location you have been to?
I don’t travel much, but I guess it has to be Thailand.
Where would you most like to visit? Why?
Probably Central and South America. I want to know if pre-Colombian civilizations have really met aliens.
About Other Designers
Which t-shirt designer(s) do you admire the most?
There are many of them. I have always been a great fan of Naolito. Genius and ultra-talented.
Have you done any collaborations for t-shirts? If so, who and what did you design? If not, who would you like to collaborate with?
I have been asked many times, and I tried. But collaborations are just not my thing. I need my time, my space, and my brain works on its own. No, I’m not at team worker at all.
Who would you like to see interviewed on the Shirt List next?
NemiMakeIt. He is a brilliant designer from Italy as well. I love her kawaii/cute style and he’s being very successful at the moment!
Any advice for new designers/artists?
Just do what you love and keep doing it. Failing is mandatory if you want to improve.