I had an idea.

It was one of those ideas that needed to be captured and shared.

It’s been months—a year?—since the idea surfaced and I’d finally decided that it was time to act.

You know, to declare our intentions. Publicly.

This morning I woke up early, recorded the day’s videos for the kids, and updated the website a couple of hours before the sun rose.

But then…

I had a different idea.

And rather than writing it down, I opened Photoshop.



And now I’m going to click the Publish button so I’ll be committed (because I just had another idea and those can sometimes be distracting).


Now I have to keep writing…



The sun set. The sun rose. The urge to write continued to grow.

While the idea (and the story behind the idea) for the images in this post is interesting, the original idea was one of those feed two birds with one seed concepts whose time has definitely come.

My students, our principal, and a few others already know but I need to capture it so I can just point here rather than explaining it all over again.



We—my students and I—are going to start a commercial art foundry.

We—the students, under my direction—are going to create resources for professionals and hobbyists and sell them via design marketplaces like Creative Market (a certainty) and DesignCuts (a dream).

Far fetched? Not when my students create artwork like this. (Man, I have got to update that gallery. So much more to show.)

Legal? So long as we operate as an ASB-approved club (we already are) and the funds are funneled directly through the school’s finance office (we’ve arranged that they will be) and 100% of the funds we raise are used to support the kids with creative tools and resources for the classroom.


UPDATE: We’ve partnered with Real World Scholars and now operate as an EdCorp (an education corporation).


The ultimate goal is to become a self-funded classroom with students learning a wide array of real-world skills as they power our entrepreneurial engine.

Doubtful? Hey, no one thought we could build something like this, either.



I’ve already shared the evolution of the Mac Lab and my call to action in other posts. Next comes the details of what this endeavor will entail, how we’ll transform the classroom, collaborate with others, and unleash the kids’ creativity. (That’s going to be a long post.)

Mac Lab Media, if successful, will move us—the students and I—one step closer to the classroom of the future.

The irony? The future is already here. We’re just trying to catch up.

#RethinkHighSchool and #CreateEDU anew is an imperative, not an option.



Full Disclosure: I wanted to use my own photography as the foundation for the images but am teaching the kids to use CC0 and public domain resources (rather than stealing intellectual property as seems to be their most-favored method) so I utilized Pexels as a search engine to find the photos and artist’s pages.

Of course, original images are always preferred, but you know, baby steps.

Even though no attribution is necessary, our practice is to always give credit where credit is due.


Image credits (from top to bottom): One · Patrick Tomasso | Two · Mike Wilson | Three · 404Four · Timur SaglambilekFive · Alex Wong | Six · Tj Holowaychuk

Please accept my sincere apologies for folding, spindling, and mutilating your photographs—and having way too much fun doing it.


Note: As with all my writing, this is a living post and subject to editing. See Small Annoyances for more about that.

For more information about our plans, please see part II of this series ⇒ MLM Design Guide

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