Some people can just draw really well. They’ve got the whole scaled perspective thing down. When they decide to take their drawing ability from paper to sneakers the process is a bit different and the outcome is something to be proud of. Joe Ziegler of TwoLeft Custom Shoes made the transition to drawing on shoes years ago but possibly one of his coolest custom projects just finished this year. In a chance occurrence Joe changed a pair of all white canvas Vans Slip Ons to a pair commemorating the brands VP of Events, Steve Van Doren, the son of founder Paul Van Doren, for Steve’s daughter Kristy Van Doren. Here is how the story played out according to Joe:
“I was playing a showcase at South by Southwest when one of the showcase hosts (Russel Hornbeek of Music Saves Lives) saw me working on a pair for someone in Austin. He immediately asked if I’d shown my work to Steve Van Doren and I sorta laughed because the thought of just talking to the CEO of Vans seemed out of reach. Within 5 minutes, Russel had emailed Kristy and gotten her shoe size for me. He told me he would see the Van Dorens at the Warped Tour Kickoff Party and that he could deliver the pair as a gift if I got them done in time. Russ wanted me to commemorate her father on the shoes and we talked about the design a bit. Once I got the concept, I got to work. Each pair generally takes 20-25 hours to complete, so I knew I had to focus. The pair ended up taking nearly 30 hours start to finish, and I’m extremely proud of the pair.”
Now these are the kind of stories that make custom sneakers the best kind of sneakers! The shoes pointillism design features a spot on portrait of Steve superimposed over the Vans logo on the right shoe with a shot of the giant Vans Sk8 Hi mobile with Steve at the helm under their slogan, Off the Wall. The back heels feature a mosh pit and Warped Tour ’13 logo to contrast against Steve’s favorite Hawaiian shirt prints on the side panels. All hand drawn. Amazing!
You can check more work and commission Joe for your own custom Vans via his Facebook page: Facebook.com/TwoLeftCustomShoes
Steve Van Doren with his TwoLeft Custom Shoes. Via Instagram: @SteveVansMan