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Amanda Lee-Medical Tee (#1)

September 24, 2009

Over the summer, I participated in a prospective pre-med student forum. Even though this forum made me realize that I didn’t want to become a physician, I learnt a great deal about the life of a physician and the many issues that permeate the medical community. One of these issues being that surgeons, especially, struggle to find the balance between being emotionally detached from the patient (so that experiencing death on a regular basis does not mentally destroy them), and treating the patients sympathetically in order to create that fundamental doctor-patient trust. I heard many patients’ stories of their doctors treating them with disrespect. Consequently, their health deteriorated, if they refused to visit the doctor, or they lost hope for recovery, if their doctor was pessimistic. So, I wanted to create a t-shirt for pre-med students, med students and doctors to remind them of this important aspect of being a good physician. T-shirt design 1

I toyed with the idea of drawing organs in their respective locations, (like the ‘skeleton’ t-shirts) but it seemed too cluttered. So I narrowed it down. The most symbolic organ is the heart, which is also commonly associated with emotion, so it seemed fitting that I used this image. I wanted to make this more personal, so I sketched a heart myself and scanned it into photoshop.
I like the idea of playing with reality and 3D images on the 2D surface of the t-shirt. I found a design on the internet which had realistic-looking headphones printed around the collar of the t-shirt. It suprises people and puts a smile on their faces, as from afar they assume the image is real, but when they get closer they’re disproven. It is an illusion in a sense-and I’m a sucker for illusions. So, here, I decided to substitute the headphones with a stethoscope to suit the theme.

I intend to print this t-shirt as a birthday present for a friend of mine, who has wanted to be a surgeon since she was 6 years old.

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