Hockey Fine Art
My relationship to ice hockey began with my father dragging us up and down the west coast in the family VW camper van chasing hockey games. We traveled to Canada to see the Vancouver Canucks, WHL teams like the Regina Kinds and Victoria Cougars as well as (the only reason he would have ever step foot in LA) to see the Los Angeles Kings. I skated for fun at our local rink, Berkeley Iceland and after his death I began to pursue playing hockey with the encouragement of my best friend. Over the last 25 years since I began playing, I never became a college goalie, but I had the love of the game and of ice tattooed on my heart.
I began photographing the rink as a teenager with my first Canon AE1. Many of my action images have only the lower part of the players body within the frame, because as a goalie we are trained to keep your eye on the puck. My view of the game while playing often cut off the heads of the players, hence this is the “goalie’s perspective”. I worked as a Supervisor/Ice Tech at the Oakland Ice Center for a number of years, where I drove the Zamboni, maintained the ice, fixed things around the rink but mostly considered both the employees, players, figure skaters, curlers as family. I brought my camera to work often, and documented my view of rink life. I tend toward still lifes and images symbolic of hockey. I often found broken old wood sticks in the trash while working. Wood sticks have essentially become obsolete in wake of the technology of composite sticks with more flexibility and variation. Wood sticks, with their paint worn from moisture and rough play began to represent the nostalgia and craftsmanship of an era now gone. Occasionally I use new sticks with images that feel more contemporary. The craftsmanship of framing sticks has been a joy to learn, I am still experimenting with closures, novel backings and hanging materials. I hope hockey lovers can feel that nostalgia, love of the game and ice in these carefully thought out images. The lines and shapes in my other body of work are very present in the hockey images.
Currently I am developing frames lined in hockey laces and stick tape. Recently I had a negative of a photo I took in 1993 at Berkeley Iceland scanned. I created a custom piece for childhood coaches of mine and have been improving of the same idea of wrapping frames with correspond colors or hockey stick tape . As my carpentry improves, so does my imagination for creating photographs and frames that represent the unique commitment, style, skill, that is the pulse of this sport.