“We’re from New York City.”
That was the direct response from both my friend and myself, when asked where we were from while backpacking around Europe, summer of 2000. Not “America”, or the “U.S.”, but “New York City”. I told my friend to carefully observe their faces when we said that, because it was like a surprise to them. Some may have seen it as a sense of snobbery, because everyone knows New York City, but for us who grew up there, there will always be a sense of pride when saying that, just because… everyone knows New York City. This article is about my many reasons behind executing one of my most recent projects combining lacrosse and the city that I grew up in. It is also for all of those who grew up in the 5-boros of New York City and contribute to the oldest and fastest growing game on the planet.
When I heard of Apple Lacrosse being the first retail store in NYC, dedicated solely to the sport of lacrosse, I really thought it was a joke, at first. But after paying a visit, befriending the store’s owner and making him aware of my “Native-NYC resume”, we decide to make start on some special projects and products for the store, that were NYC-centric. Yes, we know that lacrosse is primarily a suburban sport, but it’s growth in the NYC-area was creating more attention because of the non-traditional areas that were taking up lacrosse. And that is the sign of growth. With articles being written up in The New York Times, we knew that this was the time to do it.
Made in NYC.
We pondered thru the many NYC-icons and symbolic imagery that make up a city of about 9 million people. The word “resilient” came to mind when we thought of NYC and decided that two designs would be made for our “Made in NYC” series. NYC is tough minded, overall – the crowd, personality, the environment, etc. “Competitive” was also another word. With such driven mindsets, NYC is one of the most, if not the most, competitive city on earth.
“Life, Liberty and… oh yeah, Lacrosse.”
One of he most iconic structures, or landmarks, or whatever you may call it in NYC is the ‘Statue of Liberty’. Given to us from our friends in France, this was our first take on a “Made in NYC” concept. Instead of adding a stick in her hand that’s originally holding up a torch, we decided to keep the torch, get rid of the book and have her do the “Lax-Stance” with a stick, instead. Notice that there are are gloves and eyeblack?
Add a little line below for a t-shirt concept, and you got…
Statue of Liberty trivia/Did You Know??… that the Statue of Liberty was given to the care of the state of New York, but is located in the New Jersey side of the New York Harbor?
Need this shirt? You can get it, here!
NYC is made up of Five (5) Boros: Manhattan (Uptown), Bronx (The BX), Brooklyn (The BK), Queens (The Melting Pot) and Staten Island (Shaolin!). Each of them having their own iconic structures that stand out. The next concept was going to be a fun one because I wanted to show architecture and engineering the dominate the NYC skyline. I wanted the lacrosse player to be as confident and strong as these man-made structures, which were built to last. But my direction of this design was to also educate viewers in understanding NYC, as a whole.
Icons trivia/Did You Know??… name the structures and match which represent each borough??
Oh, need this shirt, too? You can get it, here!
As I was doing these concepts, I was more focused on the NYC-side of things than lacrosse, to be quite honest. It had more of a personal meaning to me, more than most pieces I have done. I just felt that this was up my alley as a native-NYC’er. This place, ever influential, inspiring, exciting and welcoming, will always be called home. As for the growing population of lacrosse players in the NYC area, there IS NOT a better place for a “launch pad” so that the sport of lacrosse can grow to be a globalized sport. Think of it.
If you’re ever in Manhattan, make sure to visit our friends at Apple Lacrosse.
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