By Roadtrip Nation

Van Taylor Monroe



My road in life has been direct.
He was raised in Cleveland, Ohio, in a family of nontraditional artists, and he's been painting since he was two years old.
After college, he knew he wanted to do something with business, and he figured he'd keep painting on the side.
He admits that he never felt an interest in business or finance, but he knew that's where the money was.
Eventually, after he kept hearing, "Follow your dreams," he knew he had to drop his brokerage job and focus on painting.
After painting for months, nothing was selling; he got to the point where he was about to be evicted from his home.
While the eviction notice was on still his door, he started listening to President Obama's speeches and feeling inspired.
A vision for a painted shoe came to him in a dream; the next day, he finished it, took a picture of it, and went about his day.
Suddenly, the shoe went viral; Will I. Am wore the "Obama shoe" to the BET Awards, it was displayed at the DNC, and now it's in the Smithsonian.
Keep following my journey


Shoe Artist

I'm an artist known for painting the Obama shoe and other customized sneakers.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Teaching / Mentoring