How I started as a hockey photographer

Here I am, jumping in to the blogging world.  I will be posting highlights from future events – both sporting and traditional portraits.

Letchworth State Park portrait

Letchworth State Park Portrait

I began photographing seriously after my son, Owen, was born. I was smitten with my adorable child.  I was also enamored with being able to capture images that would allow me to remember those special moments specific to young children. Especially since the sleep deprivation known only to parents of newborns and perhaps prisoners of war kept me from remembering anything more than how to rock a baby and sometimes, even walk!

Fact #1: I’m old enough (and my son is old enough) that I started taking photographs on actual film.. that had to go and be developed before you knew if you got any good shots!

Another fact you should know about me:  I married an alien.  There, it’s out in the open and you know.  Phew!


I promise he’s going after the puck and not trying to trip the other player!


Defenseman on the attack

Yes, you guessed it…

I married a Canadian.  So when my precious baby boy was three years old, my husband decided it was past time for him to join the local hockey club.  Luckily the Livingston Blues have a great learn to skate program.  Unfortunately, my husband did not find out about the program until December and they had started in October.  “That’s okay,” they said, “he can join now.”

As long as I’m baring my soul here, there’s something else you need to know about me.  I am NOT a hockey mom – I just happen to have a child that plays hockey.

So, when my only child laced up at the tender age of 3, I was terrified (partly because I knew little of the hockey world – I had only visions of bench-clearing brawls at Olympic games and snippets from my husband’s Fantasy Hockey Leagues (yes, leagues, plural)).  But then I saw my son on the ice.  They have these  red sliding pushers to help the kids keep their balance as they learn to skate.  And by December, the program had mostly moved past the ‘learn to skate’ part and had moved on to the ‘learn the game of hockey’ part.  But Owen had never skated.  So I watched with a mixture of dread and hysterics as Owen scissor skated from one end of the rink to the other.  The dread lasted about 2 minutes.  The hysterical laughing lasted the next 18 minutes because that’s how long it took him to get to the other end of the rink!

blog post 2015-07-01

Younger days, when all five players on the ice tended to be all in the same spot chasing the puck (or in this case, falling over the opposing goalie)

That wasn’t so bad.  I could handle a little hockey if it made my heart melt.  Then I figured out I could act as the team photographer and not only get images of my son, but to document the whole team.  And, as a bonus, I figured I actually watched less of the game because I was trying to get great images.  I still see when someone lambastes my kid (and I’m NOT okay with that), but I also make my family and the whole team happy by providing galleries to view and print my pictures.

Now my baby boy is growning up.  He is at Bantam level hockey with a team in Batavia, NY.  This is the first year that checking will be legal.  It’s happened LOTS of times, it just should have been called as a penalty up until now.  I’m not looking forward to the more aggressive and scary step because I have the heart of a helicopter mom.  I want my child safe.  But I also want him to be (mostly) fearless, love being part of a team, and to give him a place to get his aggression out that doesn’t involve loud or unkind voices in our home.

And, to make it easier, I still have my camera.  Now, I’m not hiding behind it, I’m using it for the greater good (okay, I’m still hiding from the checking a little).


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