Artists send in shoes for national competition


Matthew Breer, Courtesy

Sophomore Adina Bliss works on the local flavor Sk8-Hi Van. There were many attributes of Oklahoma including a longhorn skull and the Oklahoma seal. If the students make it to the next round, public voting for their will be available online from April 27 to May 11.

The Duncan High Art Department is competing in a national art contest to design a pair of Vans.

Senior Stephanie Chaidez was on YouTube when she came across a video discussing the contest and how Vans will donate $50,000 to the winning school’s art department.

“I was very interested because I knew that our school has been going through budget cuts,” Chaidez said. “And I know a lot of students who just breathe art.”

After that, Chaidez went online and looked up how to register and read the rules. She then told her art teacher, Matthew Breer, about the contest.

“He got excited about it,” Chaidez said. “He told us we had a good chance with all the talent that he had seen.”

After they registered, Vans sent them four pairs of shoes to design in four different categories.

“He [Breer] gave out outlines of the shoes so everyone in his art classes could design one and share their ideas,” Chaidez said.

Breer then picked out the ones he thought stood out the most, and picked four groups to work on the shoes. Each group got a shoe and a category to work on. Altogether, there were about 13 students working on the shoes. The four categories the students could design for were art, music, a board sport and local flavor.

“It turned out pretty cool,” sophomore Ana Tamez said.

For art, they did a photography theme, and they based them on polaroid pictures.

Their board sport category shoe was a surfing theme. For music they painted the shoe like a galaxy with music notes and lastly, their local flavor shoe was painted to represent Oklahoma. It has oil rigs, the Oklahoma Seal and many other things that represent the state.

“If you get picked in the top 10 in your region, you get to go to nationals this summer in California,” Tamez said. “If we win nationals our art department will receive $50,000, and we really need that.”

It took them about a month to get the shoes done.

“There were nights when we had to take the shoes home and work on them until late,” Chaidez said. “But in the end we got together and worked on all the shoes and got them done.”

This gave Chaidez and the rest of the art department a chance to bond.

“I liked the fact that I met so many talented people that I didn’t know before,” Chaidez said. “I enjoyed getting to collaborate with different people, and put our ideas together to form the shoes.”

Breer is excited for the opportunity.

“Hopefully we make the top 10,” Breer said. “If we make the top five we get to design a skateboard.”