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Peace Shirts ~ Design Information

Great Minds Dream Alike
black & white ~  rainbow  ~  blue  ~  coffee

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This is the first and most resonant image in the (PEACE) WORDS series. It speaks deeply to people over and over.

"Great minds think alike and fools seldom differ" is attributed to the great Anonymous but the word "dream" alludes to the collective unconscious in which we all participate and its substitution into the shortened phrase brings peace into the inherent being of all.

As a t-shirt, the rainbow version of GREAT MINDS on a black field is the most significant, describing the commonality of the human race in the great void of existence. A rainbow is not meant to depict diversity, not meant to show how different we humans are; a rainbow is meant to symbolize the bridge between differences ~ it denotes harmony. Coupled with the peace symbol and the words, "dream alike", that particular t-shirt resonates to the core of the issue. It stimulates the emergence of the deep-seated quest for peace within us all and lights that quest with honor.

Wearing a GREAT MINDS t-shirt on a plane always provokes a positive response. Sometimes I sport a wild appearance ~ maybe people are relieved I’m not a terrorist! Revolutionary, yes. Terrorist, no. One man told me "great minds think alikeā€¦" were his grandmother’s dying words only a couple weeks earlier ~ they would always be special to him. Most people just smile and nod approvingly. Sometimes they ask as to where they too can get a t-shirt.

As graffiti, GREAT MINDS DREAM ALIKE has been seen in large and small formats for years. I have had a banner on the front of my house long enough to be the "crazy guy in the neighborhood" but one neighbor told me he instructs his daughter to read it every morning on her way to high school. I have left GREAT MINDS up for years with the thought that it may be the only reading she does all day.

The original idea for GREAT MINDS was to write a book of short biographies (two to three pages each) of the recipients of the Nobel Prize for Peace. That would be a powerful and inspiring collection to compose. Hopefully, it will manifest soon.

In my mind, whenever I see this image, I picture Einstein. But it could as easily be Buddha or Gandhi or Martin Luther King. Or (insert your favorite peace revolutionary here)!

I’m not sure if I would have continued the (PEACE) WORDS series if GREAT MINDS hadn’t affected me so deeply. It continues to affect me after all these years.

Hope for Peace peace shirts
black & white ~  green  ~  blue  ~  color

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Years before anyone had heard of Barack Obama, the HOPE banner was hanging on the outside of my house, facing the church parking lot next door. Those people really need some hope. I believe getting this image into the psychic consciousness of the planet laid the groundwork for Obama’s original presidential campaign and Shepard Fairey’s famous poster honoring him. I am proud to have gotten the psychic ball rolling.

Merging the peace symbol with the word "hope" is a perfect combination, understood at a level where the verbal and non-verbal realms unite ~ it is an image of deep and honest emotion. The color of hope is spring green, light and fresh, and the green HOPE t-shirt is the most successful. It affects women with a magnetic force from across a room, melting their defenses and releasing their truth. The greens, the HOPE, and the peace symbol combine to create a magical and transcendental portal to the center of the heart.

As graffiti, HOPE has never received a cross word. Not even from Christians (whose arrogance has no use for the future). HOPE has been an image cherished far and wide. It works well on traffic signs that have an abundance of directional arrows. It makes me cry inside to see it placed in the most impoverished parts of the city (most soldiers are recruited from the populations of the poor). Recently, even Republicans have requested it for their front yards. Never underestimate the power of hope.

After GREAT MINDS, HOPE remains the most popular image of the (PEACE) WORDS series. After all these years, it continues to spring eternal.

One Peace For All peace shirts
black & white ~  harlequin  ~  green & blue  ~  brown  ~  pink & blue

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Equal to GREAT MINDS, ONE FOR ALL has the most power and depth for me. I never tire of this image and continue to read it differently in different circumstances.

When the ONE FOR ALL image was moved from the breast to the belly of the maternal t-shirt, the resonance deepened. I particularly like this image in black on a man’s white t-shirt: It can make a thug feel like a knight in shining armor.

As graffiti, placement on a church, a political office or city hall, a bank ~ each merges with the site to create another meaning. Re-reading each site/image combination in light of the peace symbol digs ONE FOR ALL into even deeper layers. Juxtaposing this image with bus bench advertising is always valuable. It is amusing to place the ONE FOR ALL image on porn newspaper dispensers.

The Equal Rights Movement (the new Civil Rights Movement) has embraced ONE FOR ALL. You see t-shirts, buttons, and stickers at every rally.

The nobility of the Three Musketeers and the truth of the Taoist concept of universal force combine to illuminate the idea that each and every person is a bodhisattva in the world. Some bodhisattvas have a bottle of medicine in one hand, others have a can of spray paint. Or a pocket full of stickers.

Peace Wow
black & white ~  rasta

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Spiritually, this is the highest vibing image in the (PEACE) WORDS series ~ the combination of peace and ecstasy, the "wahe guru" that is both an epiphany and a recognition. Those who are attracted to this image are unconstrained by their peers, liberated in some aspect of their lives. They are also people who are frequently delighted or giddy or who appreciate unconventional beauty. The "Rastafarian" version of WOW is a dynamic design. It sites well on government buildings. The violet version alludes to yogic perfection and bliss. Wear it for yoga class to become both the epiphany and the ecstasy.

A dear friend of mine always combines WOW and GOD in her car window for a great double whammy. I like to combine WOW with NOW.

Peace Now
black & white ~  black & red ~  taupe

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This is the most aggressive image in the (PEACE) WORDS series. It is demanding. When the t-shirt with the "O" as a red peace symbol was designed, I envisioned militant dykes marching on Washington. (The next version of NOW was in much softer, "lipstick" colors!) We should all be so militant and demanding for peace.

As graffiti, this image intimidates people ~ they smile and put up barriers. While wearing a NOW t-shirt, people won’t look me in the eye. It touches their conscience the same way WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TODAY TO SAVE THE WORLD? does (an image with the same aggressive directness from the Universal Peace series). Possibly, repetition of the NOW image is the magic chord needed to topple the walls we all inherently build.

Without a frame, the word "NOW" with the peace symbol may have been in existence before my design. I always equate it with the National Organization of Women though, like HOPE for Barack Obama, thus far, my version has failed to be endorsed. Maybe I should have added an exclamation point. And stomped my foot!

Universal Peace
black & white ~ purple

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There is the thought that peace is idealistic, unrealistic, and impractical ~ that it is the stuff of dreams, not meant for this world. But that is not true. Peace may well be the most pragmatic choice available to any society and the most valuable solution to the problems of this world.

That which is contrary to the natural harmony of things takes a toll on its participants far greater than its short-term rewards. War is the greatest counter-harmony endeavor imaginable. And its immediate rewards are lost in the mire of its product.

Conflict in personal matters corrupts both the physical and emotional selves; conflict in social matters corrupts the healthy and fortuitous progress of groups. The energy involved in each is better exerted toward raising the quality of life and the quality of spirit. But somehow, the directness of that idea is lost in the realm of egos.

While aggression may be a remnant of our animal nature, conflict is not the way of longevity. Harmony will outlive dissonance. And the arrogance that is the foundation of conflict will be the undoing of the aggressor. That which is great will fall.

Peace is the only logical choice for a person, a family, a society, a country, a planet. Peace is the only legacy worth endowing, the only life worth living. In every moment, there is the choice between love and fear, harmony and disharmony; wiser is the path of peace ~ peace is the path of the wise.

Universal Hope
black & white ~ color1 ~ color2

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Whate Have You Done Today To Save The World
black & white ~ color ~ mixed

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Eco Logic
black & white ~ color

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