How I Met Jeff, A Local Ice Fisherman From Pennsylvania

A little more than a year ago I went on an East Coast Study Tour alongside documentary filmmaker Dante Luna. He picked me up in Orlando, FL and we made our way up to Boston, MA. We crossed 8+ states along the way, stopping in about 7 different cities/towns. One of them being Erie, PA. That's where I met Jeff, a local ice fisherman.

I enjoy getting to know people before I photograph them. So for the first hour we just hanged out in his house. Mainly his room. We listened to music and just spoke about life. He told me about how much he enjoyed fishing year round on his time off. The more we spoke about it, the more excited I was getting to walk out on a frozen lake for the first time in my life. Although I was a bit nervous, Jeff assured me it was safe.

We had to be at least 200 ft. (or more) away from the shore by the time Jeff stopped to setup camp. I quickly learned that wearing sneakers was not the best idea. There was a thin layer of water on the surface of the ice that began to soak through after a few minutes. I tried my best to ignore the uncomfortable feeling of working in cold wet socks. "Just smile and click", I kept telling myself.

"Me"  photo credit: Dante Luna

"Me" photo credit: Dante Luna

Life is all about putting yourself in uncomfortable situations that result in learning experiences. Sometimes we miss opportunities because of how we think the world might perceive us or even our fear to fail. There is nothing braver than chasing your dreams. Especially because most of the time you are the only one who sees the vision. I challenge you to do something you always wanted to do, but haven't for what ever reason. Tell me how it goes.


Pedro "FLAKO" CruzComment