is the shell that reveals the inner world of the wearer."
It may be a
favorite dress, a lettermanís jacket, the band T-shirt that
represents your youth ó in any case, itís a significant piece of
clothing that is so much more than just material.
Todd Mrozinski knows the feeling exactly. His quote above is why he
paints clothes, producing custom-made canvasses of beloved articles of
like a personality comes through the clothing almost more than if I
were to paint a portrait of a face," he says. "Emotion can
be painted just as well in the collar of a shirt as it can be in the
darkness of an eye. These paintings capture the emotional landscape of
human existence that everyone wears and experiences in smears and
drips and piles of paint."
believes his clients understand that clothing is a container of
essence and really showcases the personality. "When (the article
of clothing) is positioned on a canvas just right, it can really
resonate the essence of that person," he says.
He has done more
than 50 clothing portraits, with each taking between 10 and 20 hours
to complete. Fees range from $400 to $2,000 per canvas.
to spend time with his clients when they deliver their special
articles of clothing to his studio to absorb some of their
personalities. "Itís fun to get to know people and interact
with them before and after the process," he says. Then itís on
to working with the clothing. "I find I have to listen to what
and how it wants to be painted."
are subjects with intricate fabric patterns. He compares it to
painting skin. "But all in all, the painting really flows out
easily," he says.
been painting clothing for 15 years. His first clothing portrait was
his own set of boxer shorts. The Fond du Lac native came to Milwaukee
to attend the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design and has been here
ever since. From his studio, Mrozinski paints full time. Besides
clothing, he produces portraits, landscapes and even tuffets. Heís
especially proud of his shadow paintings. In that process, a light is
projected onto the subject, with the shadow landing on the canvas. The
shadow is traced and Mrozinski creates the painting from the tracing.
clothing," he says, "the essence of the person comes through