Sunday, June 28, 2009

New Mexico Horses

Made for an avid equestrian and proud New Mexico resident. The Flying Death Unicorns were good practice for this pair, although I still find horse muscle structure to be incredibly difficult. The lettering on the sides turned out pretty well. It's a fun challenge to try to freehand replicate the exact same letters on two shoes.

Friday, June 26, 2009

I am victorious!

Cue up your Chariots of Fire soundtrack, because I am proud to announce that I won Paint or Thread's Custom Contest #1. I'm totally ecstatic.

Thank you very much to all who voted! It means a lot to me!

Now I get to raid the Fully Laced store ( for 12 free pairs of shoelaces and one free t-shirt. Oh, and bragging rights. I win those too.

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Maltese Falcon

I finally own a pair of ArtKicks. That's right, I was so focused on getting my shoe business going that I neglected to create the greatest promotional tool of all--a pair of shoes to adorn my own feet. For the subject, I chose one of my favorite films of all time, the 1941 noir classic The Maltese Falcon.

This was a great opportunity to demonstrate some elements that haven't been a strong presence in previous pairs: caricatures, black and white design, and clean lettering. Consider this pair to be the Falcon poster that should have existed. I lifted the typography from existing posters, but the rest is my own design.

Time to go network.

Saturday, June 20, 2009


These shoes are perhaps the most labor-intensive pair I have ever done. I used many many photos of crows and ravens in order to get the feather structure and subtle color variations of the plumage correct. I'm really happy with the final result, particularly the painterly quality of the blue, green, and black on the Raven on the right shoe. These sorts of moments might even fool someone into thinking that I used paint and not marker for this pair.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

What 144 markers looks like

My dad surprised me with a massive number of Sharpies as an end of the school year present. I was blown away at the number of colors he got ahold of. Some of them are even twin tip fine point and ultra fine point. Basically, this is like Christmas, Halloween, and my birthday all rolled into one. I'm gonna do a massive number of shoes this summer.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Rock & Blues

These were done for a guy who loves music, specifically hard rock and blues. If there's one thing I learned from this pair, it's that musical instruments are pretty damn hard to draw. I'm pretty happy with the final result though. I think the color blending on the stand-up bass exceeded my expectations. It really seems to pop out from the blue background.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Tropical Beaches Strike Back

This is the sister pair to the original Tropical Beaches. The girl who commissioned both pairs gave the first one to her sister and will keep this one for herself. Rather than copy the original exactly, I experimented with taking the design and making it slicker and tighter. This is the first pair where I really experimented with utilizing negative space, and I think the open white space on the sides works surprisingly well.

Friday, June 5, 2009


Dinosaurs are interesting subjects for art because there are so many different potential styles in which to depict them. Rather than going for a museum-quality rendering of anatomy or a frightening depiction of killing machines, I wanted these dinos to be reminiscent of the art on the rubber placemats I had as a kid. I still pushed myself for a lot of detail, but I wanted the overall feel to be fun.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

My shoes are in a contest! Start voting!

My flying death unicorn shoes are in the first ever Paint or Thread shoe customization contest!

Help me win this thing! Send your vote to by June 11th. Tell them you like entry "D".

Below is a graphical representation of my impending victory:

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

France and Modern Dance

Made these for a girl who is looking forward to living in France for the next several years. She's also involved in dance and enjoys photographing her fellow dancers. I used some of her photos and design work as a reference and inspiration for the pose of the dancer and the color scheme of the shoes overall.