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Art Students Make it to Top 50 in Vans Contest

Cole Campbell, Staff Writer

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Vans Custom Culture is a contest in which students from around the country can design a pair of Vans for a chance to win a trip to California and $50,000 for their school’s art program. Four students were chosen to be entered in the competition, each designing a different style of shoe. The students had four categories to enter in: Local Flavor, Action Sports, Music, and Art.

Senior Nick Hammonds was assigned to design high-top Vans in the Action Sports category.

“I decided to do surfing for my action sport,” Hammonds said. “On one shoe, I painted an actual surfer, and on the other, I painted a shark jumping out of the water.”

On each shoe, the students were required to include some type of famous artwork that related to their own, so Hammonds chose to include “The Great Wave Off Kanagawa” on the side of one of his shoes.

“The Great Wave painting was one inspiration [for my shoes], and definitely the other students’ shoes were [also] an inspiration,” Hammonds said. “We obviously wanted our shoes to go really well together, so we all worked off each other [and] tried to follow each other’s styles and themes.”

Junior Nicholas Herrington was chosen to enter in Van’s side contest, in which students designed a print with the theme of Technology in Design

“The actual drawing itself was a hand holding a modern day cell phone, which was trailed by older forms of technology, [such as] the Macintosh, a typewriter, [and] a compass,” Herrington said.

Herrington was able to create the print by drawing the design in pencil, then tracing over it in pen, “adding value by stippling the image,” Herrington said. He then moved to watercolors to add color.

“The overall figure [of the design] takes the form of an infinity sign, representing the never ending advancement of technology,” Herrington said. “[I just thought] about how far humanity has come. We [have] progressed so much, and the future of technology looks bright because of our past achievements.”

Although the students did not win the $50,000, they placed in the top 50 schools in the country.
“It [is] definitely an honor to have been selected as top 50,” Hammonds said. “ I [feel] like we all made really good shoes, and I’m just happy to have made it as far as we did.”

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