A synthesis of transpressive mountain building, as evidenced by rock uplift and topography along the entire San Andreas fault, reveals a complex crustal response to oblique plate motion. Convergent deformation increases toward the fault but does not correlate with the angle of plate-motion obliquity. The shortening estimated from rock uplift is also insufficient to account for the fault-normal motion based on relative plate velocity. This suggests that near-field convergence is influenced by local structural complexity and is not purely driven by regional transpression, and that the fault-normal component of plate motion is partly accommodated elsewhere. Heterogeneity in deformation and degree of slip partitioning highlight the importance of other factors in shaping transpressive continental deformation, including surface processes, material anisotropy, and strain weakening.