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Outfitting a Start-Up DTG T-shirt Business: Image1 Media

May 16, 2013

When Eddie Cardenas saw his Lithographic Printing field losing steam due to the recession, he did some research and gathered resources, teamed up with his brother Ruben Cardenas to make the brave move into the emerging direct to garment revolution. This is a decision he has not regretted, as his start-up business has quickly blossomed into a very successful venture!

In July of 2012 Eddie started up Image 1 Media , located in Pasadena, CA, specializing in creating digital apparel with an AnaJet mp5. After checking out other DTG printers, he decided to buy an AnaJet as it was manufactured close by.  With his former background in commercial printing, or “Print-to-Paper” industry, moving to DTG was pretty easy for Eddie. He outfitted a small room off of his garage with fresh paint, a table, the AnaJet printer, a humidifier capable of humidifying the Arizona desert(!), and supplies such as t-shirts, ink, and cleaning solutions. He calls his set-up, “The perfect environment to produce DTG printing… The fact that we have a “garage” set-up, and a very nice set-up in my opinion, gives us a huge advantage by keeping our overhead at a very, very low cost. With traditional silk-screening our garage would be a mess and probably wouldn’t have enough room to operate effectively.”



“Being new to the garment business most of my time was spent studying and self-teaching myself Photoshop Elements. “ There were also details to work out: “building marketing material and setting up the business, CPA, Quick books, etc.” While attending  the free training at AnaJet University, Eddie shared some tips and tricks he’d acquired in using the mP5, and his technical prowess led AnaJet to hire him on as a Field Technician. Although he still holds a regular job in sales, he has a projected goal to be 100% dedicated to Image1 Media by the end of 2013. He would also like to continue to be working with AnaJet as part of the independent Anatech team. “Hopefully between the two I will be sitting in the front row of the modern t-shirt industry.”

Business in the past year has grown — this week alone orders for over 2,400 shirts are in the queue!  In April he upgraded his mp5 with an mPower mP10i. He enthuses over the mP10i, saying that, “It is cutting-edge!”  He also loves the fact that initial morning start-ups are ten times faster with his new machine, and according to Eddie, clean-up takes only 3 minutes!

Check out Image1 Media’s website:

Also see them on Facebook:


Image1 Media Print Room

Image1 Media Print Room

Image1 Media Print Room

Image1 Media Print Room


Image1 Media Print Room

Image1 Media Print Room

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  1. T.C. Arnold
    Jun 14 2013

    Awesome info! I to am in a bone dry climate about 600 miles north of Arizona and was concerned about the humidity levels! I have the exact humidifier you have in this testimonial. So problem solved! I to want to start in a office  so we are heading down the same paths. At first dealing to businesses, schools and small resort communities in the general vacinity. Nothing seemed to scare me more than the humidity levels and the cost of a high end machine and the rate of sales. Plus being from a paper art back ground and not having a ton of experience with creative software. Your story has given me new hope! Thank you for sharing! I hope my start up ideas lead me to the same dreams as yours! My own T shirt company that 100% supports my family comfortably and on my terms.

    Thanks again,