South San Jose artist creates custom shoes, art to give back to community

ByDustin Dorsey KGO logo
Wednesday, March 27, 2019
SJ artist creates custom shoes to help give back to community
San Jose artist Connor Snow drew super heroes as a kid because he liked that they helped people. Now, he creates custom art projects, including custom shoes, of first responders and fallen war heroes as a way to honor and show support to them.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Connor Snow got inspired to draw by watching Saturday morning cartoons as a four-year-old in San Jose.

Snow creates incredibly lifelike creations of so many different subjects. These creations even come to life while on the outside of shoes.

"I initially got into painting shoes because I saw an artist friend of mine do a pair," Snow said. "I thought it would be such a cool and unique thing to get into. A lot of people like custom made products like that."

Those people include friends and family who order them for Christmas or birthday gifts. Snow has also done a few custom wedding shoes for happy couples to wear on their big day.

"I've done Steph Curry Warriors shoes and super hero shoes as well," Snow said. "Anything pop culture related is always fun to do."

This isn't an easy process.

His shoes takes hours to do.

"I take a pair of blank white slip-on Vans shoes and sketch the design out with a pencil. I then paint it all out with acrylic paint. It's all done by hand," Snow said.

But it's not just shoes.

He makes all sorts of creations to showcase his passion to help.

He always loved watching Spiderman and Batman because of the good they did for the benefit of others.

That's where his interest in drawing these heroes first began. But it has turned into something more as he has grown older.

"I've been inspired to draw real heroes like fallen soldiers, police officers and firefighters. I have a huge respect for them and I can use my art to pay tribute to them. It's a great way to give back," Snow said.

He uses all forms of media to create his projects. This includes paint, digital media, colored pencils and even chalk.

The more simple projects can take him up to 5 hours. The more intricate? Upwards of 20 hours on one piece of art.

One of his projects that he was able to work on was something he never would have dreamed possible. He was able to paint for his favorite sports team.

"Last year I had the opportunity to work with the San Jose Sharks Foundation," Snow said. "They commissioned me to do this large portrait of Joe Pavelski. Pavelski must've talked to me for an hour about it. To have him see the picture of himself that I painted was such a cool and rewarding experience."

Now, as he keeps trying to give back to his community, he is working alongside an educational psychologist in the area to create a children's book based around key social skills.

"This series will be about three brothers who each has a very unique super power. Each book will teach a lesson and each brother has to use their specific power for the benefit of others," Snow said.

Each project he takes on and every subject he covers, he always wants to make sure there is a purpose.

He wants to use his passion to give back to the people he has the most passion for.

"That's definitely the number one thing with my art," Snow said. "I don't want it to be just a job or something I do for fun. I feel like I've been given this talent for a reason and I want to use it to help and support people."