The 8-bit ZOMBIE summer release is finally here! I can’t tell you how excited I am to finally get this stuff out there. I know some of you were probably expecting more NES games but as you can see, I decided to take a break from the 8-bit side this time around and focus entirely on my other 80′s obsession. Last summer was entirely dedicated to NES games and I had a blast working on it. Right after that release I decided that next summer would be movies! If you know me, you know my love of 80′s movies rivals that of my love for the 8-bit NES. Both were the cornerstones of my childhood and have influenced my life in big ways. I had no shortage of ideas for this release. The hardest part for me was choosing which movies NOT to do, haha.
It seems like I’ve been working on this release for years now, haha. But I did indeed start planning everything about a year ago. I was determined to get this years’ summer extravaganza out earlier than last years summer release. But as you can see, that didn’t happen! In fact this release almost didn’t happen at all. This year has been somewhat of a roller coaster for me. Earlier in the year, about the time I was just starting to get production of the summer stuff rolling, one of my loved ones passed away. It was certainly a rough time and it’s hard to care about much when you are grieving. 8BZ definitely got put on the back burner for a while. But as the weeks and months rolled on, I decided that I was going to get back up, dust myself off and give it my all. In fact I was more determined than ever to make this release happen. Believe it or not I printed pretty much everything you see in the store in about a month and half. I honestly don’t know how I did it. Looking back it’s all a blur. But I’m so glad I decided to stick with it. The release was less a summer and more a LATE summer release (Again, haha) but it’s out and that’s all that really matters to me. I can honestly say I’ve never worked harder or dedicated so much time and effort to something in my life. But I think it was worth it. I feel like this is definitely some of the best stuff I have produced with 8BZ. Kinda went in a new direction design-wise as well. You can’t really pay homage to the 80′s without some bright and colorful designs but for the most part I wanted this release to be a bit more low-key. I think you’ll notice a lot less color than last year’s summer stuff.
Another big part of this release is the new store. I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve needed to overhaul my store for the longest time. And this too has been in the works for quite a while. My buddy Alan Bernard and I put in many hours these last few weeks to get the store ready to be launched with the summer release. We wanted it to be an 80′s explosion and I think we succeed! The store itself seems to be getting just as much attention as the products, so I’m extremely happy. If you are a fan of the 80′s I think you’ll enjoy what we’ve done.
These last few months have been extremely long ones but at the same time also seemed to fly by at a break-neck pace. I’m still a little shocked that the release date is here and that the store and products are done and ready to go, haha. But I’m also very proud of this release. Like I said, I gave it my all and really tried to step up my game and hopefully that shows.
So what does the future hold for 8BZ? One thing I know for certain is that I want to scale back on the size of my releases. 8BZ is pretty much a one-man-show. Apart from hiring artists, I do pretty much everything on my own. And screen printing that much stuff can be draining and exhausting. I absolutely love doing what I’m doing but I don’t want to get burned out on it. Until I start outsourcing some of the work load to other people I’m going to focus more on quality rather than quantity from here on out. I’d like to be able to put more polish on my products and focus on the details. So fewer products but BETTER products. And I’ve already got so many ideas for the future that I don’t even know where to start! I feel like after doing this for almost two years now that I’ve barely scratched the surface of what I can do with my love and passion for all things 80′s. Super excited to see where I can take 8-bit ZOMBIE from here.
I’d like to say thanks for all the support from friends, family and fans. And a HUGE thank you to everyone who helped make this release happen. Thanks to Alan Bernard for sticking with me on the store overhaul. And to all the artists who brought all of my crazy ideas to life once again – Matthew Skiff, Pitchgrim, Gaunty, Setup85, Cutty Bage, Matt Tobin, Derek Deal, Chad Manzo, Craig Robson, Johnny Crap and Evanimal.
Hope everyone reading this digs this release as much as I do.
In the immortal words of Bill S. Preston Esq. & Ted “Theodore” Logan :
Be excellent to each other.