A woman wearing a leaping dolphin all over print white teeshirt

Dolphin watercolour print

Designed by Chrissie and I and printed in the USA and Europe. My new absolute fav dolphin watercolour ‘all-over’ teeshirt print. All purchases made using this link will receive a 10% discount that is applied automatically at checkout.

https://surface-active.myteespring.co/listing/dolphins-leaping-kaikoura-ne?product=823/pr?=DISCOUNT

Promo code: ARTYKIWI.

I love to draw and illustrate wildlife. All of Chrissie and my Surface Active Artwear designs that you see on this site have begun as drawings and visuals on paper. Sometimes as a very closely observed upscale pen & ink, or just a few lines to rough out the composition.

My lockdown project has been to create digital art of our legacy hand-rendered designs to populate our new teespring store with about 20 of our wildlife art and Kiwiana designs for adults and kids.

I’ll photograph or scan the drawing as a high resolution image, and begin building up the image in colour in Photoshop and Freehand, sometimes painting, sometimes airbrushing or drawing in digital pen & ink, I will use a variety of techniques until I have a finished, hand separated, high resolution, multicolour artwork suitable for placing on apparel, coffee mugs, art print posters and other housewares.

Each design is a wildlife art print, a Surface Active New Zealand artwear—making waves in a sea of sameness.

Facebook ad of four happy friends all wearing Spotted Shags t-shirts. Spotted shags are the best kind. Storewide discount 15% off, use code “ARTYKIWI”.

Spotted shags are the best kind

Storewide 15% off till January 5, 2021 here, use promo code “KIWIART.”

During breeding season nature gets heavy-handed with blue-green makeup and punk hair-dos.

With their distinctive spotted feathers, bright blue-green colouring and tufted crests, these spotted shags/parekareka are thinking of romance (and fish.) What else does a shag do in it’s pre-nuptial plumage?

Shop for the double-sided version here, and the single-sided version here.

Spotted shags/parekareka design collage

My kind of shellfish. Paua Pacific tee 15% off till Jan 5, 2021. Promotional Facebook Ad for Surface Active New Zealand Artwear T-shirts. Young woman wearing a black paua teeshirt underneath her blue denim jacket.

My kind of shellfish

Storewide 15% off till January 5, 2021 here, use promo code “KIWIART.”

These black and navy tees with the double-sided Paua print are perfect for the summer. For a 15% discount through to January 5th use the promo code “KIWIART” here:

Cool, clean Pacific waters produce the bright iridescent colours of the paua shell—a watery treasure of New Zealand to keep you cool. 

This art print is a composite of a charcoal drawing and hand-separated paua shell pattern printed in 6 colours which gives the paua design a shimmering quality. Illustration based on a photo by Rod Morris.

Awesome New Zealand Nature Inspired T-shirts. Storewide 15% off till Jan 5, 2021. Promotional Facebook Ad for Surface Active New Zealand Artwear T-shirts. . Young couple wearing a jewelled gecko New Zealand and a kiwi New Zealand t-shirt leaning against a blue VW Kombi van.

Awesome New Zealand nature inspired T-shirts

Storewide 15% off till January 5, 2021 here, use promo code “KIWIART.”

What a way to spend lockdown! As Surface Active’s graphic designer I built this new collection of awesome New Zealand Nature Inspired T-shirts from a mix of our legacy drawings, photolitho artwork and some new hand-rendered digital illustrations.

To celebrate the launch of Chrissie and my new store we’d like to share a storewide 15% discount offer that expires on January 5th. You can shop here https://surface-active.myteespring.co/?pr=DISCOUNT to get your Surface Active teeshirts.

The jewelled gecko is available here, and the kiwi is available here.

New Surface Active t-shirt collection

With a sweet launch offer—15% off storewide till Jan 5, 2021

To celebrate the launch of Chrissie and my new store we’d like to share a storewide 15% discount offer that expires on January 5th. You can shop here https://surface-active.myteespring.co/?pr=DISCOUNT to get your Surface Active teeshirts. Use the promo code “KIWIART”.

So Chrissie and I have run our New Zealand wildlife art screenprinting company and clothing brand since 1985. Our brand is Surface Active—Artwear from New Zealand. As design pARTners we create wildlife T-shirts in the spirit of fun. Our subject matter is native flora & fauna, landscapes and Kiwiana—designs that celebrate some of the unique and beautiful assets of New Zealand, our country that we love.

We have had many requests to make our most popular T-shirt designs available again. So I made it my lockdown project to complete the job of launching our brand new Surface Active Teespring store.

From whales to wetas, paua to penguins—please browse through our store to see if there’s something for you.

All the best,

Design pARTners: Shaun Waugh (boss), Chrissie Terpstra (bossier)

Adelie penguins make everything better. Shop for kids and for adults.
Adelie Penguin kids tees are here

Paua for the people. Kiwi as summers by the sea! Shop the range of Paua apparel and homewares here.

We believe drawing is an essential part of the creative process and all that you see in our store has begun as drawings. At 61cm x 91cm this original portrait of a tuatara rendered in pen and ink by Shaun has maximum impact as a poster. Shop the range of Tuatara homewares and apparel 
here.

Kee-aa! Kid’s Kea New Zealand on a deep royal blue tee. Get your alpine parrot tees for adults and kids here

Forest floor and Ocean. Two double-sided t-shirt designs just for kids. These lively charcoal pencil drawings are printed front and back—they look almost 3D.
Ocean: The dolphins, seals and whales are 
here
Forest floor: A scattering of native flora & creatures of the forest floor, some creepy, some cute—are 
here.

Don’t say “oooh!”, say “aaah!” For this is on of the best looking wetas you’ll see. The recently discovered bluff weta can be found in scree and on rocky bluffs at Kaikoura and Mt. Somers and all over this t-shirt, available for adults and kids here.

Surface Active Artwear • Christchurch New Zealand

surfaceactive@xtra.co.nz

You can read more about the Surface Active back story here.


Surface Active Artwear Teespring store pops-up

April 2020
Dear Surface Dweller,

We’re excited to announce our fab Surface Active TeeSpring store has popped up! Our Surface Active Artwear celebrates some of the beautiful assets of New Zealand. Please pause & peruse our first two designs over at Teespring—Adelie penguins and Tuatara.

Adelie penguins, Antarctica

from Surface Active

Noisy, stinky & aggressive in reality but ain’t they cute? This design is a chuckle with penguins coming & going on the front and back. By the magic of art the white cotton of a plain teeshirt is transformed into Antarctic sea ice so this design is available on white only.

Adelie_penguins_all_over_front_1600

Adelie_penguins_all_over_back_1600

This imagery tells a tale of a dramatic before and after scene that unfolded when this formation of hungry Adelie penguins hesitated near the edge of the Antarctic sea ice, then they were suddenly faced with a leopard seal on the prowl in the waters just below.

This Adelie penguin all-over print, is available here for AUD$53.12


Credits


Design firm: Surface Active
Art direction: Design pARTners, Chrissie Terpstra and Shaun Waugh
Client: Surface Active
Graphic designer: Shaun Waugh


©magentadot brands

‘Paua Aotearoa’, adults and kids T-shirt, four colour print on navy and black fabric.

Surface Active: Making waves in a sea of sameness

T-shirts in the spirit of fun.

Surface Active made in Aotearoa, T-shirts main neck label.

Surface Active T-shirts main neck label.

As an illustrative graphic designer, writer, desktop publisher; I was a design pARTner with Chrissie Terpstra in our in-house garment screenprinting studio. We learned that hand-pulled screenprinting is the medium of the hard labouring graphic artist.

Overview

Of course we were big fans of the humble T-shirt and by the mid 1980s they had become hot promotional items, garments on the outskirts of fashion, and a relatively new medium for the Graphic Designer’s art. What had for a long time been considered a poor medium for Graphic Design grew to an almost essential one.

All you have to do is walk down the street anywhere in the world since the early 80s to see what a ubiquitous promotional vehicle they have become. If you mail out 100 potential clients a direct mail brochure perhaps 200 people will see it. But mail out, or better yet, sell 100 T-shirts, and assuming they’re at all decent looking, you launch 100 walking billboards.
Keep on reading!

Mario, wild Orangutan, Borneo

The opportunity to capture wild Orangutan portraits was a rare treat


CAMP LEAKEY, TANJUNG PUTING NATIONAL PARK, BORNEO


ORANGUTAN ARE AN ALMOST exclusively arboreal species, so the glimpse we got of this teenage male named Mario, early in the morning from our riverboat before leaving the National Park, dipping in the river and posing like Tarzan on the ground just a few metres away, this was an extraordinary treat.
Read More

Wildlife Photo portrait of a Cheetah at Orana Wildlife Park

Where the wild things are

Orana Wildlife Park is a great place for wildlife photography


ORANA WILDLIFE PARK, MCLEANS ISLAND, CHRISTCHURCH


WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHY IS THE GENRE of photography concerned with the documenting of wildlife in their natural habitat, Orana Wildlife Park in Christchurch, is New Zealand’s only open range zoo. Visiting Orana Park therefore offers a unique opportunity for the self-assignment of exercising your photography skills because in the wild animals are difficult to approach, predicting their actions is hit and miss, whereas the animals at Orana Park are not perturbed when viewed from quite close up and because there are mostly no bars or cages capturing great images of them in interesting situations just takes a little patience to be in the right place at the right time.
Keep on reading!

Antarctic Centre Adelies on ice Antarctica design on a white and a dark blue T-shirt

Cool T-shirts for Antarctica

WILDLIFE ART FOR THE ANTARCTIC CENTRE – Surface Active design pARTners’ good art achieves standout 1991 competition win

Christchurch is the gateway to Antarctica, has been for well over a century. The International Antarctic Centre was established in 1990, the visitor ‘Antarctic Attraction’ was opened to the public two years later.

Getting Antarctic people to vote on the Antarctic T-shirt designs

In 1991 the Attraction’s “Antarctic shop” merchandising and trading manager invited New Zealand’s leading souvenir T-shirt screen printers to each enter a set of Antarctica T-shirt designs into a competition, speculatively, to be judged and voted on by staff members of the various national Antarctic programmes based in Christchurch—hundreds of world-class scientists, explorers, transport support staff and the likes involved in preparing for their work in Antarctica. The brief was wide open, wildlife art designs, historical designs pertaining to Christchurch’s involvement with the 1912 epic of Captain Scott’s race to the Pole.
Keep on reading!

Orana Park Chapman’s Zebra screen prints on front and back of a navy T-shirt

Wildlife Park T-shirts for Africa

Our 1992 competition winners, a range of wildlife art t-shirts that celebrate an international wildlife conservation success story: Orana’s African savannah top five


ORANA WILDLIFE PARK, MCLEANS ISLAND, CHRISTCHURCH


The retail market of the garment trade is tough, for an open range zoo like Orana Park, with one foot in the quality recreational experience sector and the other in the tourism sector, trading is highly seasonal. The competition for the customer’s discretionary spending dollar and the fact the park is a charitable trust that generates 95% of its income from gate takings and their ‘Trading Post’, demanded that the very best way of developing the Park’s new T-shirt range be used for this custom T-shirt design and print project.
Keep on reading!