King’s Cathedral & Chapels Bulletin Cover

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

King's Cathedral & ChapelsBack in 2003, while in Hawaii, I designed the bulletin shells for First Assembly King’s Cathedral & Chapels in Maui.  This church has a large number of churches that spread across the Pacific Rim.  These bulletins were handed out as a formal way of announcing future events and other news related to the chain of congregations.

There are a number of things I really like about this project.  Given that I’ve been designing for a long time, I can see how trends come and go.  For example, the heavy use of glows and shadows, clearly depict the design trends of the time.  These are techniques that I mostly avoid these days.  When used tastefully however, they can still work to your advantage.

King's Cathedral & Chapels Bulletin

Happy New Year Free Vector Art

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Happy New Year Vector Art Post Image

Based on the success of the Thanksgiving vector art a few months ago, I’ve created another piece for the New Year!  This one features a bunch of complex gradients and transparencies.  Lately, I’ve been designing on Adobe Illustrator CS5, or CS3 but this design I created while vacationing in the Caribbean and here I only have an old laptop with CS1.  It proves, however, that you can create great art no matter what!  The file should open and work fine in any newer version of Illustrator.  It’s royalty-free so have fun with it.  I’d appreciate a link to my site if you feel generous this Christmas season.  ‘Till next time.  In the meantime, please find the button and subscribe!  Thanks!  -Danny

Happy New Year Vector ArtworkDownload Button AI


Happy Thanksgiving Vector Artwork

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

It’s been a while since I’ve posted free vector artwork.  So here it goes!  A fun, comic-like Thanksgiving logo vector art piece for all your turkey day needs!  You’ll need Adobe Illustrator for this one.  I have a lot to be thankful for this year and I’m posting this to celebrate the beginning of my favorite time of the year!  Feel free to use it for whatever you like!  Please link to my website if you feel like giving back.  I’d really appreciate it.  Hope you have a wonderful holiday season! -Danny

Thanksgiving Vector Logo Artwork

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Rip Curl Pro Search 2010 in Puerto Rico!

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Update November 7, 2010: This event ended up being one of the greatest events of the year and the best Puerto Rico has seen in decades. It was specially historical at both ends of the spectrum, the good and the bad. The fact that Kelly Slater not only won the event, but clenched his 10th world title in Puerto Rico is something that will not soon be forgotten. On the other hand, the contest also marks the point in time when the surfing world lost one of its greatest, Andy Irons. Many mourn his death and I personally send my prayers to his family during this time of incredible loss. May God be with you. -Danny Cruz

In my efforts to bring you more than just news about graphic design here’s a neat little number that talks about two of my biggest interests.  Most of you know I’m a surfer.  It makes me pretty darn proud to find out that Rip Curl has chosen Puerto Rico as the venue for their 2010 Pro Search.  The Rip Curl Pro Search is a professional surf contest that changes venues every year.  Not only that, but once the host country is chosen, they don’t specify exactly where the event is going to be held at in order to “search” for the best spot with the best conditions.

This year could also be of even more significance.  As of this writing, Kelly Slater is ahead of Jordy Smith in the race for the World Title.  This would be Slater’s 10th world title!  Looks like he’s so far ahead that any podium position will seal the deal.  In fact, even if Kelly Slater gets a 25 in Puerto Rico, Jordy needs at least a 5th place in order to stay in the game.

You’re making a Puerto Rican surfer really proud!

Apart from the fact that the event is in Puerto Rico, what caught my eye was the wonderful artwork created for the event.  The artwork was created by surf artist Tyler Warren.  I was not familiar with Tyler’s work until now, but I can tell you I’m now a fan as I’m truly impressed.  Since I’m Puerto Rican, I can see stuff in that painting that I immediately relate to.  Like the three kings, the Puerto Rican “cuatro” guitar, and the “Garita del Morro.”  Tyler, if you run in to this article, let me tell you, “Good job!  You’re making a Puerto Rican surfer really proud!”

You can see more of Tyler’s work on his website:

Rip Curl Pro Search Poster


Solid Surfboard Artwork – The Newman

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Artwork for a Surfboard

I just finished creating an artwork piece for a board that will be built by talented shaper Dan O’Hara from Solid Surf Co.  The model is “The Newman” which Dan himself describes as a board “for boosting airs.”

This is just a preview of the preliminary design.  I ended up making some mods for the final version.  Until then, check this one out.  When the board is ready, I’ll post up a photo of the finished board with the final artwork.  The artwork is all vectors in Adobe Illustrator.


How I Created the Art Wave for the Surf Theme

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

I just updated my site’s style switcher and added the first of 3 styles.  This one is for the surf theme.  I’ve got 2 more coming…  Dirt and snow.  You might be wondering how I created the wave that sits below the header.  It was a small sketch I drew this morning.  I then scanned it and “painted” it in Adobe Photoshop using bits and pieces of real photos of real waves.  There’s some foam from Teahupoo, bits and pieces of Pipeline and some glare from Jeffreysbay.  All in all, a fun project to take on.  See below the “before and after” photo.  The first photo is the sketch exactly as my scanner saw it.  The colorful barreling wave below is the finished picture after quite a bit of work.  -D

Big Wave Sketch


Summer Sessions Kids Windsurfing Camp Artwork

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Logo Windsurfing Summer Camp

Just finished this artwork for a buddy of mine. This dude hosts an awesome windsurfing camp for kids every summer in Puerto Rico. I’ve been doing the artwork for this program for the last 6 years. I just finished creating the artwork for the 2010 camp T-shirt. This was mostly done in Adobe Illustrator piecing original artwork together with stock vectors off the web. The windsurfer image on the back was a photo modified in Photoshop and then vectorized in Illustrator. For more information about the Summer Sessions Kids Windsurfing Camp check out

Windsurfing Kids Summer Camp T-Shirt


Quick Post: Old Kiteboarding Site

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Post image for Quick Post: Old Kiteboarding Site

I’m going straight to the point here so the only warm up sentence is this one.  I’m writing this post for 2 reasons:

1. To remind you that you can still visit my old kiteboarding site
2. To test my site photo lightbox display.

For some reason, the lightbox didn’t want to work on my last post.  I’m using this opportunity to see if it’ll work on this one.  You don’t have to worry about this, but if you want to know more, I’m talking about the little window that shows up in front of the page when you click a photo.

As far as the number 1 reason for this post, you can click the link below to visit my old kiteboarding site:

What makes this site unique (apart from all the cool kiteboarding photos and videos) is that it represents a big landmark in my development as a designer.  I created all the artwork for it back in 2004 and it was mostly all done in Photoshop.  While I wouldn’t design this way anymore due to the functionality limitations, I was able to prove to myself I could do something really cool and rather unique at the time.  Fast forward 6 years and my development as a designer has grown exponentially.  The screen capture below was taken from the video page of that old site.

By the way, I just tested the lightbox and it works.  I wonder what’s going on with my last post? ;)

Screen Capture - Kiteboarding Video Page

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Cool Glossy Vector Bar Buttons for your Blog

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Glossy Bar Buttons Post Intro Image

After the success of my recent Bubble-Button vectors I decided to create a set of rectangular bar buttons. These are high-quality and original vectors. I included a multitude of colors to choose from. You can likely get as creative as you want and hack them apart in Adobe Illustrator to get whatever color combination you want. I’m posting them up for free. The only thing I ask is that you respect the license and if you use them please link to this site. The buttons were created in Adobe Illustrator CS3 and you can download them as .ai CS3. Please don’t resell them. That would be a really stupid thing to do. Please retweet and share with your designer friends.

Free Vector Bar Buttons

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Vector Bubble-Butt ons for your Site

by Danny Cruz| Follow Danny @sixstringsensei on Twitter HERE

Vector Bubble Buttons for your Website

I just created this cool set of glossy vector port-hole bubble buttons.  These would be great for your website or as a gimmie in a flyer or sale campaign.  They are high-quality, original and perfectly done.  I’m posting them up for free.  The only thing I ask is that you respect the license and if you use them please link to this site.  The buttons were created in Adobe Illustrator CS3 and you can download them as .ai CS3.    Please don’t resell them.  If you do, I can give you my address so you can mail me a big fat check.  Oh! And please retweet. Enjoy!

Vector Bubble Button Set

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