Vans created a division of their company called Vans Custom Culture that aims to inspire and empower students to express themselves and use their creativity. They started a national competition of high schools that customized blank Vans shoes to a specific theme. The different pairs of shoes are then submitted and narrowed down from the originally picked 500 schools to the top 50.
Seneca Valley’s Vans are among the selected 50 and it is now up to public vote to determine the top five. The winning high school receives $75,000 for their school’s art program and a barbecue that includes a musical guest and raffles for free Vans shoes.
It is an incredible opportunity for Seneca Valley and the students involved in this project from both the Senior High School and the Intermediate High School worked incredibly hard to be recognized even in the top 50.
The Senior High School art teacher, Jason Woolslare, who lead the project talked about the shoes, “For the ‘Off the Wall’ theme, our concept grew from the idea that Vans shoes have always been a shoe company for creative types: artists, skateboarders, surfers, etc. We wanted to depict a world rendered in a pop-surrealistic style. Our concept was to use the Vans shoes in a way that would depict ‘Growing the seeds of Creative Culture.’ All pieces are original and handcrafted by our artistically diverse students.”
He then went on to explain the second pair of Vans, “The ‘Local Flavor’ concept was designed around the theme of ‘Stronger Than Hate… As people living in the Pittsburgh region, we were all affected by the tragedy at The Tree of Life Synagogue. Creatively, it was difficult to express every emotion. Therefore, we decided to depict our region in the most positive way, utilizing the phrase ‘Stronger Than Hate’ and creating a colorful rendition of the region for which we are so proud.”
This link can be used to vote daily up until May 3rd: CustomCulture.vans.com