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#1 Edited by Nickieroonie (139 posts) -
I'm fucking sick of looking at these

Hello! I painted the shoes that appeared in this mailbag.

Click here for the full gallery!

They're a pair of Nike Air Force 1 Highs that used to look like this. They were painted with acrylic leather paint and they took a few hundred hours to complete. If you have any questions about them, this is the place to ask!

I also made this this thread to provide some information regarding the painting process so that you guys can paint your own shoes if you're ever inclined to. First, you should check out the following videos by Jacob Patterson:

1) How to prepare leather shoes

2) How to paint leather shoes

Jacob's videos got me interested in painting shoes, leading me to do two pairs before the GB ones. You should check out his stuff -- his shoes are incredible.

First attempt at painting - not so hot

Second attempt at painting - much better!

While you could watch Jacob's videos to figure out how to paint leather shoes, here's my own short version of the process.

You will need the following items:

  • Cotton balls (thicker is better)
  • Acetone (also known as nail polish remover) (get as close to 100% concentration as possible)
  • Rubber gloves (the kind you use for cleaning around the house)
  • A few glasses that you don't care about
  • Towels that you don't care about
  • Paint brushes (anything is fine, e.g. nylon)
  • Acrylic leather paint (not normal acrylic) (buy it here or Google another shop)
  • Leather shoes (be wary of the materials that make up the shoe)
  • Finisher (aka varnish)
  • Foam paint brush (to apply the finisher)

To start, you'll need to find a pair of shoes. The parts that you plan on painting need to be leather. If not, the paint won't bond properly and will be prone to wear and tear. Other than that, it doesn't matter what kind of shoes you choose. They can even be old ones that you'd like to revitalize.

Next, you'll need to prepare the shoes for painting. This involves cleaning them with acetone. Pour some of the acetone in a cup that you don't care about. Toss 6-10 cotton balls in the cup and put on your rubber gloves. Soak the cotton balls thoroughly. Squeeze them out each time you grab a new one -- you want it to be damp, but not dripping profusely. Firmly rub the areas that you plan on painting in order to remove dirt and paint. When the cotton ball gets too grimy, it'll start to smear. Throw that one away and grab a new one. You'll also need to try and remove any finisher that might be on the shoes. If you don't, the paint will not have a chance to bond -- the finisher will act as a wall between the paint and the leather. Don't scrub too hard, though, because you'll end up with bumpy leather! It takes some elbow grease to complete the preparation. Be vigilant!

After you've prepared the shoes, you can jump straight into painting. The paints work exactly like any other acrylic paints. You can mix them to your liking, and you can also thin them out with water. When you're painting, you should probably follow a design (even if it's simple). You can use this site to check for preexisting templates that are usable with Photoshop. When you're painting, you should pull the paint across the surface as evenly as possible. Use thin layers. Some of the colors are really shitty and will require tons of layers. If you paint your layers too thick, it'll look gloppy and ugly. Allow at least 4-5 minutes for each layer to dry. If you make any mistakes, you can lick your finger and quickly wipe up the last layer that you did. You can also use acetone to clean up stuff like the rubber soles.

Once you've finished painting, you should clean the shoes to the best of your ability with a damp cloth. If you wish, you can apply a finisher to make the shoes more durable. Finishers can increase the shine of the shoe, but there are matte finishers if you don't want that effect. You can find many varieties of finishers at craft stores. Apply the finisher in thin coats (just like the paint). If your coats are too thick, you'll get bubbles. You can pop the bubbles with a dab of acetone, but it's best not to have them appear at all! Apply as many coats as you feel are necessary -- I would recommend a minimum of two.

Above all, you'll need a lot of patience! Applying thin coats over and over again is really tiresome and meticulous. I like to watch stuff or listen to podcasts while painting shoes. It's too boring otherwise! If you feel like I've missed anything, I will gladly answer any questions. If you decide to venture forth with your own pair of painted shoes, please show us when you're done!

edit: I can't get this to format the way I want it to :( Moderators feel free to fudge with it!

edit 2: @ryan in case you didn't recognize it, the clown mask is from this video!

#2 Edited by RazielCuts (2711 posts) -

Good job, bro! I wish there was a 'like' button on this site so I could.

#3 Edited by RetroVirus (1405 posts) -

Those are some sweet kicks.

#4 Posted by TheManWithNoPlan (4433 posts) -

Pretty nice. Those shoes are Da Bomb.

#5 Edited by Blu3V3nom07 (4027 posts) -

This shit's bangin.' So-so def!

#6 Edited by selbie (1777 posts) -

That's some sweet hunkaDUNK!

#7 Edited by Milkman (16227 posts) -

You're fucking awesome.

#8 Posted by LiK (910 posts) -

saw this on Mailbag. really awesome work.

#9 Edited by AssaTM (8 posts) -

Do you do any paid work at all? that is simply incredible :)

#10 Edited by solus_impar (65 posts) -

Those shoes are dope.

#11 Posted by The_Reflection (239 posts) -

fuckin' siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiick

#12 Posted by Rodiard (419 posts) -

Nice work duder!

#13 Edited by Phatmac (5686 posts) -

Love those kicks! Great job duder!

@marino this should be on the front page of Giant Bomb!

#14 Posted by Daveyo520 (6597 posts) -

Love the Meat Boy ones.

#15 Posted by Dethfish (3590 posts) -

All those shoes look amazing.

Also, I was terrified of that mask because I almost instantly remembered it. It was like a nightmare had come to life.

#16 Posted by ComradeCrash (551 posts) -

Wow, so cool!

#17 Posted by supamon (1325 posts) -

Nice kicks! Hope there's more in the making.

#18 Edited by Jrinswand (1692 posts) -

Those are some nice shoes. It's stuff like this that makes the internet worthwhile.

#19 Posted by Cold_Wolven (2167 posts) -

Fully sick!

#20 Posted by Evilsbane (4333 posts) -

The GB shoes are insane and FUCKing eh do I want those meatboy shoes.

#21 Posted by MariachiMacabre (6937 posts) -

Hey, so I'm just gonna give you my address and you can send me the Super Meat Boy pair, okay? Please?!

Seriously great stuff, man. Really impressive.

#22 Posted by Fattony12000 (6350 posts) -

Dope sick kicks.

#23 Edited by Carzo (15 posts) -

I'm more of a Dunk person so I gotta ask, why not Dunks? Great job regardless.

#24 Edited by Herk (165 posts) -

You are an artist, duder! Amazing work on all of them really

#25 Posted by Kinapuff (244 posts) -

Just out of curiosity, do you do commissions?

#26 Edited by iam3green (14388 posts) -

those are pretty cool stuff.

#27 Edited by jiggajoe14 (514 posts) -

Those shoes are so damn badass.

#28 Posted by AlisterCat (5397 posts) -

Fantastic work. I want some Persona high tops.

#29 Edited by peritus (904 posts) -

Very cool. Nice!

#30 Posted by Winternet (7936 posts) -

I'm just here to say that this are some motherfucking amazazing shoes. Incredible great work @nickieroonie

#31 Posted by tread311 (352 posts) -

The fact that this took hundreds of hours makes me think you actually managed to out do the PC guy in terms of gift craziness. The escalation of the mailbag has been interesting.

#32 Posted by Nickieroonie (139 posts) -

@assatm: thanks! No, I haven't done any paid work.

@dethfish: I'm glad that @dennisthemennis and I were able to instill fear in your heart.

@carzo: I like Dunks better too, but I've already done two pairs of dunks (see above). I wanted to do something different. Plus, it was pretty hard to find an all-leather shoe. I live in a small town!

@kinapuff: I'm not sure if it would work out because I'm so slow at painting. But if you want to talk about it, PM me.

@alistercat: that's a good idea!

Thanks for all of the kind compliments! :D

#33 Posted by Marino (4101 posts) -

@nickieroonie: Aaaaaaaaaaaaand you're on the front page! (again)

Staff
#34 Edited by UitDeToekomst (661 posts) -

that is some astounding art work. i have never - and never will - understand fashion interest and getting oneself gussied up in any way or form, particularly shoe fashion, but as works of art these objects are very nice.

#35 Edited by laserbolts (5309 posts) -

Great job they look pretty sick.

#36 Posted by Sisyphean (73 posts) -

Beautiful work. I can't think of anything that better represents Giant Bomb!

#37 Posted by MachoFantastico (4299 posts) -

Those look awesome. Would love to have seen Jeff wearing them at E3.

#38 Edited by EpicSteve (6439 posts) -

Fantastic work!

#39 Posted by Snail (8469 posts) -

Awesome! Would buy!

#40 Posted by Aaron_G (1603 posts) -

That's pretty awesome!

#41 Edited by origamifleshlight (13 posts) -
#42 Posted by RecSpec (3679 posts) -

Awesome stuff.

#43 Edited by Nev (534 posts) -

These are incredible, awesome work!

#44 Posted by TehBuLL (569 posts) -

I refuse to believe that I wouldn't get all sorts of play wearing those Meat Boy shoes. Some of that hardcore nerd chick action.

#45 Posted by JeanLuc (3518 posts) -

Now I want to give painting shoes a try. Excellent job duder, I love all the cool stuff this community comes up with. That's why you guys are the best.

#46 Posted by axf4ever (37 posts) -

nice job on those shoes :D

#47 Posted by Kiri90 (251 posts) -

@tehbull: *goes to look up all upcoming gaming conventions* ;)

#48 Edited by vince_kupo (142 posts) -

MOOGLE SHOES!!!!!!

#49 Edited by Meowshi (2911 posts) -
#50 Posted by Nilazz (606 posts) -

Amazing!