Turning Paintings into T-Shirts

Hertz Nazaire
5 min readMay 23, 2018

One of the worst things about being a painter living with Sickle Cell Disease is the inability to work full-time and make a living. I was often too sick to follow my dreams.

At some point I manage to get some art supplies and worked hard at evolving my talent.

Read’s Artspace in my studio

Art creation process for me is often a few active months followed by a year of paying back my credit cards from the art supplies I’ve purchased. I don’t sell my work often. I create them because my mental health demands that I find a way to manage the stress caused by living Sickle Cell Anemia.

working on a Sickle Cell Awareness piece.

I don’t enjoy dealing with Sickle Cell. I wanted more from my life and feel deeply depressed at times because there are a lot of things I want to do. I have this dream to travel to Japan with a goal of learning art creation from other cultures around the world.

For Sickle Cell Awareness I started putting my art on t-shirts

The last thing an artist wants to do is put his art on a t-shirt. These things were created for a wall space ideally at the MET or some other elite art museum. That is the ego of a painter. I would not know much about that my work rarely leaves Connecticut.

Because of the need to advocate for Sickle Cell I started creating t-shirts with my pain art. At first it was cafepress.com then zazzle.com recently redbubble.com and rageon.com all of these print on demand companies where you can take an image and place it on a product.

Selling merch is the low end of a painters dream. But I can’t be picky I need to find ways to fund my art. I have BIG dreams!

This is my favorite piece from 2017 Eve’s Rose

I work larger these days due to being blind in my right eye from the effects of Sickle Cell. So to get the detail I use to have before my blindness it is far less frustrating to get the largest canvas possible.

I find new ways to make them bigger.

Now that the 2017 show is over I had to take out a loan just to pay back my credit card bills. You’d think I could sell one of these? Nah most of them could not fit on the elevator so after my big show in Hartford I cut them up so they art not meant for sale.

So what is next?

Well after I pay off my loan I’ll start getting large canvasses again and paint for 6 to 9 months rinse and repeat.

At least that is what I was hoping to do. Yet a few weeks ago I saw a youtube video talking about Merch by Amazon. What? Amazon allows print on demand shirt designs? Yup!

I was disappointed that I am finding out so late in the game they have been doing this since 2016 I think.

But from the youtube video the guy was saying how he is making thousands of dollars per month from designing t-shirts to sell on Amazon. Let me correct that he pays a designer from Fiverr.com $1 per design to make slogan t-shirts with trending words and catch phrases. #FacePalm

Not hating, I am full of envy. Why am I not making thousands of dollars per month creating art shirts? The slogans and keywords can be trademarked or they get copied by other sellers dojng the same thing but original art is yours as the artist so they are not easy to copy a shirt with an original art design.

After finding dozens of other youtubers bragging about their sales on Merch from hiring Fiverr designers. I registered for Merch by Amazon. I want to test this slogan shirt gold rush myself before the shirt bubble breaks. I’m a few years late but here we go. From painter to t-shirt designer.

no slogans or catch phrases just my art. found here
From This
To that! found here

Will they sell? I have no clue I just started and I am now just buying my own shirts to see how well the printing came out and to Tier out of the 10 design and 25 tier limit.

In the meantime I need to design some slogan shirts because not sure if my art can save me.

My Slogan Shirts are not fancy but maybe I’ll wear this to Starbucks?

You can find more of my Slogan Text only Shirts at my Amazon Store.

Thanks for taking the time to read a little about my life. You can support me by sharing my story and slogan shirts. I love being a painter but I want to be able to earn a living too. Maybe I should design for others on Fiverr? LOL. Yeah I’m still salty that I found this so late.

I got to get back to uploading shirt designs. Peace.

  • Hertz Nazaire
  • Haitian born painter / Sickle Cell Warrior

Requested Links Update: as requested I’ll post fewlinks to my other stores

Redbubble https://www.redbubble.com/people/nazaire

I like the Graphic T-Shirt Dress RedBubble has so I designed some of my Art for it. I wish Amazon had these they look cool.

RageOn https://www.rageon.com/a/users/nazaire

I never sold much here only to myself lol they are expensive but have sales often enough.

Zazzle https://www.zazzle.com/nazaire for Sickle Cell or https://www.zazzle.com/nazaire2 for Haitian Art or https://www.zazzle.com/haitianart/products for more stuff I tested at Zazzle

I had a long history with Zazzle but not really much sales to survive on did not really have a decent computer to design on back then. I got a reply saying put my art on Mugs instead of shirts but my Zazzle had mugs for years. That is all of the links going back to find my stuff on Cafepress is too depressing lol.

Hope the link updates helped — peace Naz



Hertz Nazaire

ハイチのスーパーフラット #KingsOfHaiti Artist PAINter #Haiti - Life is shorter than we can hope for... I wish to dedicate the days I have to inspiring compassion with Art