Custom design by Caitlin Fielder
Tuning into the Tour this July? Keep an eye out for George Bennett’s custom shoes, designed by his partner and artist, Caitlin Fielder. They’ve let us know he will only be wearing them on select stages, (but definitely in Paris) and we cant’t wait to see how they look on the tele. We were lucky enough to grab a few minutes with Caitlin to find out how these works of art came to be:
“They were actually a present for George, even though his birthday was a long time ago, they were actually a birthday present (a bit late.) It’s pretty much the only present I could think of doing for him. We had been looking at some designs, and doing research. I used to design surfboards, so I could draw on my experience from that, but of course it’s a different process and needed to research the materials and best way to do shoes. We decided a New Zealand inspired design would be the best thing for him to take with him to the Tour.
It’s going to be pretty amazing watching the Tour and seeing my artwork on TV. So far my art has been pretty low key, maybe I’ve sent 5 or 6 internationally, which is big enough for me, but to see him wearing them on the Champs Elysee will be pretty awesome.
George had some input a bit with the design, he said yes or no to a few things, but as far as his creative side goes he’s much more driven musically than visually. He said no to a few of the more eclectic patterns.
(Showing us the sketchbook) This is my art design book I have going so far. So I came up with the ideas and sketch them onto paper. Once we are happy with the designs in the sketch book I draw onto the shoe with a white pencil to see what it will look like. Firstly we have to do an acetone wash on the shoes to strip the layer on the top that needs to be removed so the paint sticks. I have oil based pens that I use to create the designs and then seal the top with an acrylic based finish.
The sketchbook is full of really rough ideas. We look at lots of photos and inspiration, and see what we like and don’t like and work from there. He wanted New Zealand inspired shoes, but we have other ideas for the future as well, contour lines etc. It all looks quite random until we put it all together on the shoe.”
And of course, we had to know what George thought about his hot new kicks:
“They are a pick me up, when you are absolutely on your knees from 3 weeks of getting your head kicked in. Look well, play well.”
To see more of Caitlin’s work check out her website: https://www.caitlinfielderfineart.com/