Spark Your CuriosiTEE

Houston, we have a winner. 

It’s ironic that one of the most seemingly complex pieces of space tech also makes a super iconic simplistic design. I mean, how can you not fall in love with this minimal version of the Mars rover, “Curiosity”?

For Threadfans, the winner of the Iconic Minimalism challenge – Nicholas “Gintron” Ginty – is kind of iconic himself. You might know him from here…or here…or here), or you may have seen his Artist Shop.

We talked to Gintron about his awesome version of “Curiosity,” alien life, and space robots (of course). Check out the interview below!

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Another win! How does it feel??

Oh man! It feels ‘out-of-this-world’ amazing! Eh! See what I did there! 

“NES Cartridge Love”

So this design is coming out just a week after Stephen Hawking announced a mission he’s funding to find life in space…coincidence?

That’s crazy right? I really am all about space stuff – there’s a consistent stream of mind blowing science and information about space, it’s constant inspiration. Hubble deep field images!? New Horizons Pluto trip!? Gravity waves!? Whoa!

Courtesy of Gintron’s Facebook

Is there alien life out there? (And can you draw a minimal alien for us?)

Yes. But the chances of alien life being anywhere near us in space or time is ‘minimal’. (Ah snap! See what I did there again! Ho-ho!) Seriously though, I bet aliens would be into minimalism – space itself is minimalist – it’s 99.9999999999996% empty.

Gintron original alien!

Speaking of minimal, you have an awesome minimalist style as it is! Did doing something for the iconic minimalism seem like a natural progression for you?

Thank you! Yah, as soon as I saw the e-mail announcement for the contest, I was all about it! I subbed a handful, but felt the strongest about this one for sure. I love minimalism, always push for it at work, and love experimenting with it down here in my basement man cave/”office.”

“Solar Scale”

What inspired this design for this challenge in particular? It was such an open-ended challenge, you could have gone anywhere with it!

It was my boys! Liam (5) and Oliver (2) – I talk about space a lot with them, desperate for anyone else to share cosmos awesomeness with. We’ve been talking about the Mysterious Planet of Robots – MARS! I’m able to show them pictures, even robo-selfies! So freaking cool. Cool enough to be on a tee!

“Stay Curious”

You submit to challenges so consistently – how do you stay inspired and keep your ideas fresh?

“NES Hipster”

I’m consistently inspired by Threadless artists and the never ending supply of work from many different sources online. I’m able to keep up with a lot that stuff while working as a graphic designer. I’m very lucky. Usually as soon as I see a contest announcement, I’ll doodle everything that comes to mind right away, and later pick something to run with.

Are you more of a minimalist in real life too, or a creative clutterbug?

Glow in the dark ghost pin by one of our own, lxromero! (Courtesy of Gintron’s Instagram)


I try to be minimalist design-wise as much as possible. On the reals though, as a parent of two young children, I don’t currently live in a minimalist environment.

I’m also guilty of amassing a collection of nerdy desk stuff, awesome pins from Threadless staff, and illustration/design books.

How did you develop your style?

I see styles, designs, art I like, and will be motivated to try it. I always say to myself, “Well, can’t get worse at it by doing it.”

You have an Artist Shop too! What have you most enjoyed about it?

I like having a home for my designs, even ones that may not have been well received. It’s like a living, breathing, interactive portfolio.

“Mage Preesh”

How did you pick the designs you put in your Artist Shop?

It’s basically the shirts I would wear. Hopefully, people agree. I really hope to see a stranger wearing one of my designs someday.

Gintron’s “Old Gamer” design on “The Flash”

What do you think attracts people to your art?

I bet it’s usually more the concept than the execution, but I’m always getting better! Like I say, can’t get worse at it. When designing this stuff, a main criteria I push to consider is the ‘is there a reason to wear it?’ question. You dig space robots as much as I do? You’ll proudly sport this minimalism rover.

What advice do you have for other artists?

Some advice I’m going to try to exercise more myself – don’t rush the sub! Unless it’s due that day, wait. Get some fresh eyes on your design after a good sleep, and I bet there’s something you’ll tweak. Oh, and stay awesome.

Check Out The Collection Here!

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Carlyn Hill

Dad joke aficionado, cartoonist, & contributor for sites like HelloGiggles and The Mary Sue by night. When I'm not writing or drawing, you can find me in my cave of a room hanging out with my boyfriend, Netflix.