Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wednesday Wanderings...The "Process" Revealed

Original oil paintings on tshirts? For some reason when I tell customers that my tees are hand painted, they have a hard time understanding I mean exactly that. I paint the design directly onto the shirt. They'll say things like "You mean you paint them and then iron them onto the shirt?" or "Is it like applique, you do the painting and then sew it onto the shirt?" So, to help clarify, I have created a picture show to demonstrate my process. I took these pictures myself, using the timer on my camera and I had to do them in my craft room where I work, so the picture quality and the lighting are not the best, but you can still get the idea of how I paint my shirts. In this photo demonstration I am painting the San Francisco Peaks design.
Before I begin painting, I adhere a piece of contact paper to the inside front of the shirt. This keeps the fabric from stretching, folding, or bunching up as I'm painting. I did not get a photo of this preparation.

I start by creating a white "canvas" on which to work (on a white shirt I don't have to do this step):

Next I paint the sky. Because the stencil brushes I use are sort of fat and chunky I have to cut stencils to use in creating clean, sharp edges (like the tops of the mountains):

Then the mountains:

Now for the trees:

and the meadow:

The finished product:

And that, folks, is how it's done!  :-)


  1. Wonderful! I paint directly onto clothing too!

    Your shirts are awesome!

    If you get a chance, stop by my blog for a chance to win a beautiful bracelet that would be the perfect Mother's Day gift!

  2. You are so talented!
    Bloomfield Beads

  3. Wow, I can't imagine how long that must take!!!! Sheesh! Thanks for showing us :)

  4. Lavon I had no idea that you painted directly on the shirt!

  5. Lavon, that makes the shirts all the more special. I am going to collect your shirts! LOL

    Thank you so much for this demonstration. I am loving your blog.


  6. Great picture tutorial and explanation, Lavon !

    Love your shirts !

  7. WOW! That's beautiful! Thanks for the demonstration. :) Great post!

    Regina ♥

  8. I am amazed, I never thought that would be possible.

  9. Wow. That is cool! Is that my shirt you were working on? :)

  10. Awesome! :)

    -The kid with the red curly hair

  11. Wow Lavon! That is're work is so beautiful! Great job!