While we love seeing what everyone comes up with, we have some of our own ideas up our sleeves, such as our collaborations with our favourite local artists. Through these collaborations, we have created a few series of unique shoes that we know our customers will fall in love with just like we have.

One such collaboration, The Art of Francis Dick, showcases the local aboriginal artist’s paintings on both Vans Slip-ons and Converse All-Stars. Each shoe is made to order with love by a member of our trusty staff using a patented process at our print shop. Keep reading to learn more about the woman behind the artwork, as well as what prints we have available!

Francis Dick, a member of the Kwakwaka'wakw Nation, has spent her artist career balancing traditional media with modern takes. For each of her works, most of which are paintings on canvases, she mixes imagery of the mythical with several contemporary elements.

"Before anything else, my work is about honouring my life process, my journey, through my fires, from places of pain and darkness to places that I might stand in my truth; my work is not a career, it's a way of life,” she says.

Inspired by her art’s colours and her messages, this collaboration marks the first time that Baggins has utilized physical paintings in the creation of custom shoes. The shoes below are all truly unique:

The whale represented in this Baggins Original: The Art of Francis Dick Whale symbolizes the traveller and guardian. We love it for it’s unexpected colours.

While the hummingbird represented in this Baggins Original: The Art of Francis Dick Hummingbird symbolizes love, beauty, and intelligence; it is a spirit messenger and stopper of time.

Again, the use of colour here is unlike what you’d expect.

Next there is the Baggins Original: The Art of Francis Dick Butterfly, which symbolizes transformation. Doesn’t it just scream “Perfect for Spring time?”

Then, things get a little fiercer with the Baggins Original: The Art of Francis Dick Wolf. The wolf represents direction and leadership and embodies both protection and destruction. We love how precise the painting translates to the shoes—it’s so well done you can see the brush strokes.

For a bit of a darker take, the Baggins Original: The Art of Francis Dick Skull is a provocative choice as it features imagery of a skull and a raven. The raven is said to symbolize creation and knowledge.

For all of the Converse styles above, the tongues are also printed and labelled:

Finally, for fans of Vans Slip-ons, there are two options: the Baggins Original: The Art of Francis Dick Phoenix and the Baggins Original: The Art of Francis Dick Frog.

Francis Dick, who was once a social worker before she became a professional artist, is an integral member of the native art community and is frequently requested to speak for various community organizations, women's groups and university classes. Although her primary modes of artistic expression are her aboriginal paintings and prints, she also works with gold and silver, and is an accomplished writer and performer of native ceremonies.

In addition to The Art of Francis Dick, more aboriginal artwork is also featured on this pair of Converse Chuck Taylors, The Baggins Original Hi Top Rande Cooke A Tribe Called Red . As relayed in their name, these shoes were designed by Northwest Coast artist Rande Cook and specially done for A Tribe Called Red.  The shoes feature the West Coast Wolf spinning discs…wearing Beats by Dr. Dre?!

Rande chose the wolf because of its unity with others and the animal’s great leadership skills. He says he hopes that people will enjoy wearing some cool shoes that were custom-designed just for the band and also hopes this will help showcase the fresh new vibe of Northwest Coast design.

At the Baggins Custom Print Shop, we can customize Converse All-Star Hi-Tops, Converse All-Star Low-Tops, and Vans Classic Slip-Ons.  Our print shop staff makes every possible effort to ensure each pair of shoes we produce is of the highest quality. Because they are made custom to order, please allow for minor imperfections with inking and layout. Please note that because these shoes are made custom per order, there are NO returns or exchanges on any orders.

For more options in Converse and Vans, come visit us in Downtown Victoria, or browse the rest of the Baggins Web Store. You’ll love our fast shipping times and no-hassle return policy just as much as you love our HUGE selection!