Our mantra is “Make Great Together.” Which is why this quarter, we’re celebrating muses. And we want you to show us what gets your creative gears turning with our Muse Challenge.

In honor of the muse challenge, we’re going to be sharing what gets our creative juices flowing. And we’re kicking it off with our Instagram rockstar Craig Shimala with what’s inspiring him recently. Check out what he had to say below.

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paint thing

Earlier this year, I saw the above video of Holton Rower pouring paint and was immediately inspired. I’ve had that hypnotic paint stored in the back of my mind as something I would like to try some day.

Fast forward to the office purge, where I went through all the cans of paint we had here. I’m guessing we had over 50. Of those, around 20 were still good. The rest were solid, half-yellow goo or looked like cottage cheese.

With the new year, one of my resolutions was to experiment more with stuff. So with our time coming to a close here, I went for it.


Putting all the paint in cups was a task in itself, as most of it was not in good shape and I had to mix water into some to thin them out (a move that I believe affected my results a bit).


Since I had one shot at this, I had to make sure the setup covered all my bases. This probably took another hour or so.

So I wasn’t doing the same thing as Holton, I got the idea of pouring the paint over a camera (GoPro) so you could see the stream coming down in the camera’s view. In the end, I didn’t quite get what I was hoping for, but I had a lot of fun doing it.


Some things I learned:

– I should have used new paint
– Adding water was a bad idea
– My pour height / camera height was too high
– Pouring over the camera / cup made a nice solid stream turn into a sporadic splashy mess.
– Have an assistant (or 10) next time
– It was fun to dip / lay poster paper / tees into all the paint

From these learnings, I hope to experiment more with it as everything is still setup in the back of the Threadless basketball court, which I have turned into my mad scientist laboratory. 

You can watch my entire process in this video and see the final Instagram post here.

My previous experiments involved a bunch of ornaments in an after Christmas sale that I smashed up. Here are a few results.

Till next time.

Show Us Your Muse Here!

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Craig Shimala

Creative Director for Threadless! My life revolves around community based design, documenting and James Bond kinda stuff!