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You may have noticed BoardPusher team rider Levi Huffman is a bit of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle fanatic. From his multiple DIY skateboard graphics, to his toy collection, to even bronzing (or maybe just gold spray painting) a turtle to make his own jewelry, Levi is TMNT crazy! So when it came time to create a new skateboard design, there wasn’t any doubt as to where Levi was going to find his inspiration.

Levi looked to our own BoardPusher art director for some guidance on taking a more in-depth mixed media approach to creating a top and bottom graphic. What came from these sessions is the new Levi Huffman “Shell Shocked” graphics. Here’s how:

 
 
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We started off with a couple of 9×33 inch canvases and Levi spray painted a base color layer. Once the paint dried, a trip was made to the local copy center to digitize the canvases by making a 300dpi scan of them.
 
 

Spray paint on 9x33 canvas
Spray paint on 9×33 canvas

 
For the next step we printed out 3×11 inch versions of each scan. At that size, Levi was able trace the color layer with a black outline on a sheet of velum (similar to tracing paper), draw in all the detail he wanted and it would fit on a home scanner all while being able to stay in proportion with the final board graphic.
 
 
Ink on 3x11 inch velum then scanned at 1200dpi
Ink on 3×11 inch velum then scanned at 1200dpi

 
Once the black drawing was finished, the 3×11 inch art was scanned at 1200 dpi. At this resolution we could resize it to match the 9×33 inch canvas and 300 dpi print size. A little Photoshop magic was needed to help combine the color and the black outline layer together as well as some added elements to give it a more of a graphic feel. Some more details were added in different colors, but a bit shading was also applied to push key areas of the shell back.
 
 
Digital color and shading done in Photoshop
Digital color and shading done in Photoshop

 
With the canvas, velum, and digital colors combined, Levi was now ready to upload his 9×33 inch 300 dpi .jpg skateboard and griptape files to BoardPusher.com.
 
 
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Levi’s “Shell Shocked” TMNT inspired graphics are now available here or apply these techniques to creating your own skateboard and griptape graphics on BoardPusher.com.
 
 
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