Can a celebrity be used on a t-shirt?

Frances Reinger asked a question: Can a celebrity be used on a t-shirt?
Asked By: Frances Reinger
Date created: Mon, Apr 5, 2021 1:36 PM
Date updated: Sun, Dec 4, 2022 1:14 PM


Top best answers to the question «Can a celebrity be used on a t-shirt»

  • Even if a celebrity is dead, his or her publicity rights may still be used. In the case of my MJ T-shirts, an unlawful use of his image on my shirts could, according to the state, still be able to be brought to court even though he has passed away.


Those who are looking for an answer to the question «Can a celebrity be used on a t-shirt?» often ask the following questions:

😎 Can a celebrity image be used in a t-shirt?

  • In my example of T-shirts, the copyright comes into play when we consider the person who took the picture of the celebrity’s image I would like to use. A right of publicity is “an individual's right to control and profit from the commercial use of his/her name, likeness and persona, or the ‘individual's identity’.

😎 Can i sell a shirt with a celebrity on it?

It's generally not permissible to print celebrity images on merchandise without authorization to do so. Business owners who use celebrity images on T-shirts without permission are potentially setting themselves up for a legal battle that could lead to a big payout to the celebrities involved.

😎 Can you use a celebrity picture on a t-shirt?

  • Do not use any photo, artwork, or caricature of a celebrity. Taking a celebrity’s picture and using that on a t-shirt by drawing it in your own way should be avoided. It involves some complicated copyright issues. So, avoid it as well.

10 other answers

No - you cannot legally use a celebrity's name on a t-shirt without his or her permission. Such use would violate the celebrity's right of publicity, and the celebrity would have a legal claim against you. Also, keep in mind that trademark is a noun not a verb. No, I am not the grammar police - but the difference is important.

This is particularly relevant when a celebrity is falsely represented as having endorsed a particular product, service or brand. In 2012, clothes retailer Topshop sold a t-shirt with Rihanna’s ...

Taking a celebrity’s picture and using that on a t-shirt by drawing it in your own way should be avoided. It involves some complicated copyright issues. So, avoid it as well. v. If you find an attractive graphic or image that is not listed for commercial use or free use, then do not use it on your t-shirt design.

I am currently about to start a T- Shirt business and would like to know whether I can use cartoon image of celebrities in my T-Shirt design! I've seen many of them been selling online & would like to whether it's legal to sell them! More .

Trademarks, names or logos for companies. For example you can not use the name Nike, Nike “Just Do It” or the swoosh logo. Photos, caricatures, or other artwork depicting a celebrity. Just because you take a picture of a celebrity, draw it or trace their likeness, it does not give you the right to use the image on shirts.

If you really need a certain picture or celebrity’s face on your t-shirt, then you need to find out who has the rights to the image and contact them before proceeding. Oftentimes, people will be nicer than you think in these situations, but there are some people who are really trying to milk it for all it’s worth, so just be ready for anything.

Celebrities on the other hand are not fair game, and use of a celebrities image or likeness is technically Copyright Infringement, whether it is a ‘parody’ or ‘satire’ or not. Again, to determine whether your design is ‘fair use’ would have to be determined in court – which we want to avoid.

Trademark companies and their logos, names and content. Celebrities exploited in any way, even if you created original content. We know, it seems like there’s so many limitations when you’re simply trying to come up with a design for your Shop. Don’t let these limitations hold you back.

Taking the public domain aspect out of it, let's say you want to use an image of a celebrity taken by someone else. You would have to purchase the appropriate license from the owner of the image. Most likely, this would be the photographer who took it. However, you would also need to secure a model release.

In contrast, serious legal issues can be invoked when the graphic image you have chosen to use on your t-shirt is already in use by an individual or entity as a trademark or service mark, either registered or just used in commerce for a number of years in a particular region.

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