The Rocks Off 100: Shane Tuttle, Updog Owner and Album-Cover Designer

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Welcome to the Rocks Off 100, our portrait gallery of the most compelling profiles and personalities in the far-flung Houston music community -- a lot more than just musicians, but of course they're in there too. See the entire Rocks Off 100 at this link.

Who? Shane Tuttle discovered a talent for graphic design while working on his high-school newspaper and yearbook, and was sent, almost against his will, to the Al Collins School of Graphic Design. Now he runs his own T-shirt print shop, Updog, out of his home. He's specialized in direct-to-garment technology that allows artists to get small numbers of shirts printed without all that screen-printing hassle. From their, he'll either send you the shirts of sell them for you on his site.

But his other talent has been designing album covers. He's done covers for Dog Fashion Disco, Polkadot Cadaver, El Creepo, Salting Jobe, and Vampire Moose. His simple, eye-catching style tends towards street art mixed with early-'00s Cartoon Network. If you want someone to craft you a swift elbow to the eye-sockets, Tuttle is your man.

Home Base: Tuttle works from home in Webster, but ventures out to see bands at nearby Scout Bar and Union Tavern when the urge arises.

Good War Story: "Every process is generally a tough one, especially dealing with a band because sometimes they don't all agree, or if I am lucky, it's just one guy who determines it all," he says. "Most of the time, I get to work with some amazing illustrators who give me pieces of art to work with."

I use this art to carry out a theme from the cover, to the insert, the disc and back. I try to use colors that complement each other and generally go with a feel that fits the title of the album. For example, I wouldn't use pinks and blues in an album titled Wolves and Lumberjacks. Unless the band wants that, which could be a possibility.

Sometimes I may dabble with illustration to get a basic concept of an album layout, but I then pass that on to someone better with a pencil. In some cases, I have had the pleasure of digitally creating a logo for a band to compliment the art that goes on the cover of the album.

One of my favorite artists to work with is an old high-school friend, Dallas Clifton. He has been able to take the ideas I have in my mind and be able to put them on paper for me. The best example would be our collaboration on the Dog Fashion Disco CD, Beating a Dead Horse to Death, Again.

Music Scene Pet Peeve: Like the musicians he works for, Tuttle's main gripe is not getting paid for his work. Aside from that, he dislikes band's with no idea for what they'd like as an album cover. A little direction can be the difference between something you love and something you hate.

Five Desert Island Discs:

  • Come See My Dead Person, Come See My Dead Person
  • Dog Fashion Disco, Adultery
  • GWAR, Scumdogs of the Universe
  • Insane Clown Posse, Bang Pow Boom
  • Ghost, Infestissumam

See who else has joined The Rocks Off 100 this year on the next page.


Electric Attitude, Renegades of Funk

Sama'an Ashrawi, Trill Gladiator

Recon Naissance, A Rap While Matt's Guitar Gently Weeps

DJ Klinch Asks, "Can You Dig It?"

Jose "Chapy" Luna, Percussionist Con Corazón

Love Dominique, Wicked Heart R&B Chanteuse

Chris Gerhardt, Mastermind of Giant Battle Monster

The Jobe Wilson Band, the Boys From Chambers County

Kimberly M'Carver, Missouri City's Nightingale

DJ Panchitron, Stirring the Cumbia/Moombahton Melting Pot

D.R.I's Kurt Brecht, Thrash Zone Supervisor

Sloan Robley, The Last Houstonian Banshee

Jack Saunders, Dealer of Grit & Jangle

Richard Ramirez, Noise God and Black Leather Jesus

Mike Meegz, Scoremore's Houston Lieutenant

Jacqui Sutton, Houston's "Jazzgrass Lady"

Robin Kirby, Silk and Sandpaper Songwriter

Billy Dorsey, Grammy-Winning MARATHON Runner

David DeLaGarza, Don of Tejano Stars La Mafia

Jason Puffer, Your Psychedelic Sex Panther

Tobin Harvell, Fitzgerald's Unflappable Floor Manager

Walter Suhr, the Straw That Stirs Mango Punch!

Tony Garza, La Orquesta Salmerum Founder

OG Ron C, Chopstar King of the Purple Dome

Football, etc., Giving Emo Back Its Good Name

Angela Jae, Renaissance Artist

Shellee Coley, Voice of the Northern Woods

Blaggards, Houston's St. Paddy's Day House Band

DJ Meshak, Hongree Records' Sound Selecter

K-Rino, South Park Coalition's Southside Maven

DJ Candlestick, One Niceguy and a Very Busy DJ

Danielle Renee, Only Beast's Destroyer of Walls

Felipe Galvan of Los Skarnales

Kristine Mills, Houston's Brassiest Voice

Brian Davis, Punk Drummer, Horror Composer

Elroy Boogie, Top-Notch Turntablist

Sean Ozz, Wizard of The Abyss

Alyssa Rubich, Angel of Instability

Alphonso "Fonz" Lovelace, Righteous Drummer

Frank Zweback, Funkmaster General

OG Bobby Trill, Bombon Beatmaker

Beau Beasley, Organist for the End of Time

Rapid Ric, Mixtape Mechanic

Dwight Taylor Lee, the Wandering Bufalero

Coline Creuzot, Soulful Pop/R&B Singer

Cristina Acuna, Cactus Music's Twitter Fingers

Clint Broussard, Blues In Hi-Fi Man Now Back On FM

Nortnii Rose, Houston Ska's Greatest Hope

Ramblin' Chase Hamblin, the Man Who Will Be Paid

Chris Alonzo, Bringing Night Flight to Facebook

Jef With One F is a recovering rock star taking it one day at a time. You can read about his adventures in The Bible Spelled Backwards or connect with him on Facebook.

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