T-shirt Designer Spotlight: Nick Heazell.
|Spotlight on:||T-shirt designer Nick Heazell.|
|Are the Designs SFW or NSFW?:||SFW|
|Located in:||Alberta, Canada|
|Niche:||Humor, Geek, Pop Culture|
|Artistic Styles:||Portrait, Caricature, Comic,|
|Type of Designs:||Mashups ,Typography, Parody|
|Nick's Red Bubble Shop|
I’m pretty new to the t-shirt design community, so I’m trying to play catch-up. I’m not new to illustration or design or anything but learning the various submission sites and promoting myself is a learning curve.
I’m a family man, a geek, Star Wars fanatic, a hockey fan and a dog owner. Her name is Jedi. Oh and I’m a half Canuck half Brit hybrid.
Geek stuff mostly, Star Wars, Star Trek, Indiana Jones, Game of Thrones, comics and film and also a fair bit of classic comedy gems like Fawlty Towers, Python, Extras etc.
How long have you been designing?
On and off since leaving university in the 90’s, Tshirts since November ’11.
How did you get started in T-shirt design?
I got introduced through a friend who bought something; an iPhone case, through Redbubble. I submitted something and got some early success and confidence and just went from there.
What was your first professional design?
I think the first one that sold was Don’t Mention the War!! A Fawlty Towers piece and still does pretty well.
What have you learned about the business?
I’ve learned I probably have a lot more to learn. Like I really really need to learn how to do halftones and maybe simplify a bit. I really have detailed works which is ok for places like Redbubble but I need fewer colour if I want to break into the likes of Threadless or Teefury etc.
What inspires your work?
Oh mostly I just want to draw cool images and root around in the franchises I enjoy, like the ones laid out in the genre question. Play-on-words and parodies are fun because you get to deal with cool stuff but they have a little wit to them too.
Do you have any role models or influences?
Well I grew up on great 80’s movies and toys everything from those I’ve mentioned before, to things like Lucasfilm and ILM. I love their production sketches and their storyboards. I love comics, I really loved collecting people like Jim Lee and Marc Silvestri, and many others.
What is your philosophy of life?
Use the Force.
What are your personal stands?
I try to be straight forward, I don’t always succeed. And I’m not exactly right wing.
Do you ever incorporate these ideals into your work.
The force flows through them.
Do you use any “Print on Demand” services to sell your designs? If so would You recommend them to designers?
I do, for the most part I use Redbubble but I also have several on Society6 and a few on mySoti and Skreened.
Mostly it’s Redbubble though and I love them there. My work tends to be a lot more detailed than traditional screen printing tee sites, I find it impossible to limit myself to 4-6 colours in a lot of those places. I’m trying to move in the direction of halftoning and spot colours but it’s a lot easier to just do it and send it to Redbubble. Their price isn’t great; understandably, but it’s nice that the control is mine. I’m not a huge fan of the whole voting process when it gets submitted and then it has to jump other hurdles. Too many obsticles.
Having said all that, those sites like Teefury and Split Reason pay out more and have greater exposure if you do get through. So there’s something to be said for all versions.
Do you have a special software program or medium brand and type that you prefer to use?
I used to be all Photoshop, all the time. Then I started using Illustrator and with that I did outlines in Illustrator and the rest in Photoshop. Now I mostly use Illustrator for it all. I do bring it back to Photoshop for effects when needed. Things like reflection, lighting, glow etc.
Just so you know I do know how to use traditional techniques, I studied illustration and did copious amounts of life drawing classes etc. LOL
Do you do custom design requests?
I haven’t but I would.
Have you gotten any awards or special recognition for any of your designs or shop?
Not really, apart from some nice words on various features on blogsites.
Do you have any advice for the other designers and shopkeepers out there?
Not really, I’m probably more in need of advice from them. Although I might advise them that less 8-bit t-shirts would be my preference LOL.
Is there anything you want to say to your customers and fans?
Oh you know what, I’d love to have the odd people now and then send in pics of them when they get a T-shirt from me. I’ve never received any pics from people and would love to have an “Owners Corner” on my blog or something.
Are there any other Tshirt designers you would like to see spotlighted?
Hmmm how about Geekchic? I love the work in general and they’ve had some run ins with Lucasarts and designs so I’d love to hear that whole story.