B.C. teacher designs shoes on the side for Drake, the Weeknd and more
Published Wednesday, June 13, 2018 6:36AM EDT
Teachers have to work hard to impress their high school students, but one B.C. teacher just has to show his students his list of customers.
Zac Vine, a teacher at Sooke's Journey Middle School, designs sneakers for celebrities such as rapper Drake and baseball star Aroldis Chapman.
Vine started a similar program in Toronto six years ago, working with inner-city kids and establishing an after-school program aimed at restoring and painting disadvantaged youths' sneakers so they had something to wear.
He established a similar program at Journey Middle School, winning over unsure kids.
One student told CTV News that before Vine’s class, he just considered shoes to be footwear rather than artwork.
Vine's work for celebrities started in Toronto, after he uploaded shots of his doodles on Nike shoes to Instagram.
His work went viral after drawing a design inspired by MLB pitcher Aroldis Chapman on a pair of Nike shoes. The star closer discovered the design and decided he wanted a pair for himself, flying the baseball fan down to Cincinnati to meet the team.
Then Nike took notice.
"From there, things kind of exploded for me," Vine told CTV Vancouver Island. "Nike contacted me and wanted me to start working with their sponsored athletes (and) sponsored artists."
The teacher started his own company "Zeevy," and designs shoes for stars such as the Weeknd, Slip Knot and Def Leppard. Each pair takes about 40 hours to design and make and can go for as much as $3,000 a pair.
Back in the classroom, Vine lets students design on old pairs of Nike Air Jordans he's acquired, allowing them to show off their own work.
"You could hear a pin drop in here sometimes because kids are so into their shoes," he says.
With a report from CTV’s Jordan Cunningham