Saturday, September 12, 2009

9/11 Attacks and Hurricane Katrina tributes "Keep yo' head up" Nike Air Force 1 custom sneaker

Hello world!
It's been quite some time since I posted something, or at least something to feed you with, and I came with a full plate for you! I don't even know where to start, nor how to go about it to keep it short and to the point without leaving anything out because this pair is full of emotions.
First of all I would like to send out prayers to all of those who lost a loved one during any of these tragic event, show my up most respect to all that survived, and admiration to all of those who helped.
The idea for this shoe has been in my mind since early summer of 2008, and it is the combination of two requests from two different clients. The first client requested a pair as a tribute to the NYFD and the attacks of 9/11, and the second one requested a showcase of all the iconic locations of New Orleans. While we discussed it several times in several months with both clients, it never happened. Thats when I started thinking of combining for a showcase (mainly to save money).
As I reached the end of the summer, a chain of events started affecting me physically, spiritually, emotionally, and economically. I ended up a hospital bed all by myself for three days. I will spare you the details, but in that bed I had a lot of time to think and realize the how much value I gave to so many things that were irrelevant. This drug me into a dark whole full of anger, pain and solitude. Though I was aware that was not the right place for me to be in, I was too deep in it. And out of anger I pushed God, friends and family away from me. At the end of november, a couple of weeks after my birthdate, when my negativity was at it´s highest, I visited friends and family in NYC, and we went to ground zero, and I will never forget that day! I seen a picture there of high ranked army leader, a mature man of about 50 years old, saluting and crying, trying so hard to hold that single tear. The thought that a man who represents strength, dignity, honor, and courage, could not hold the emotion caused by the pain, that stroke me like lighting! How can I sit here and complain while is still have a roof over my head, food on my plate, and so do my family members? A couple of days later, I watched a documentary about hurricane Katrina on the History Channel, and that is when it hit me, I picked up a pair of Nike air Force 1 and chose to not only channel my pain through them, but send out a message to all of those who feel down for whatever reason: It's ok, God has a better day for you, stay strong and "keep yo' head up". This is what these custome snekaers are all about. It took me almost a year to complete these shoes because used them as a therapy, worked on the sneaker when I felt down and did not want to talk, so it is like I am encouranging others through them, and while i make them, they encourage me, twisted, I know.

The concept of these custom kicks is simple: two events, two sneakers. Each event is devided in parts, each part represented on a pannel. Part one is the actual event, the impact, the flood. Part two is the struggle, the fight for survival, the race under falling debree, or trying to stay afloat. And the final part is the aftermath, the result, the big picture.

Part one is represented on heal of the sneakers. Since these events were unexpected, and we usually get cought of guard when someone attacks us from the back, this will be how we will work our way around the sneaker.

Part two is repreented on the middle outter pannel of the sneaker. As story continues, this pannel represents the transition between the first and third part of the story. The month, day, and year of each event is featured on the front, so though we look forward and move on, we can still see it, which will make it impossible to forget.

On the last pannel time freezes, the event has passed, we no longer ask our selves "what is going on?" "this cannot be real", it is when we come to realize what happened, when we see the big picture, when we face the result of this force. The illustration of each shoe shows men watching the result of the event, now forced to move on.

The message of the shoe is on the front on the tongue. This where I started the shoe, this what kept reminding me through out the whole year as I was painting, that this was what this pair of custom sneaker was about.
The use of blue was to represent both the force of water, but also to represent how cold and shocking these two events were. The use of blue had two meanings, and that is the reason why there was more blue than red, which represented fire. These custom sneakers have one single message "keep yo' head up", but it is split in two equal halfs of 6 letters, and to keep that balance I only painted half of each logo on the back.

I really wanted to release this pair of cutom kicks on Sept 11 but I had internet issues. This pair of custom sneakers was by far my longest and most detailed job yet, and it is a tribute to two events that made me realize that, God will not put something in your path that you will not be able to overcome. As long as we remain possitive and faithful in our walk, we will be just fine. And when you think everything is going wrong, nothing works, you feel hurt, angry, alone, somebody always has it worse so "keep yo' head up"!

Once again, as always, remember that anything is possible at xclsvworld, feel free to email me for orders, share concepts, and even how you feel about the work. I know the text was long, but if you went through the whole thing, I hope it will help you out!
ps: more pics available in the video.

For orders email

XCLSV X 9/11 Attacks & Hurricane Katrina "Keep yo' head up" X Nike AF1 custom sneaker

1 comment:

  1. Your set back is your set up for your comeback!!!!