Behind the Mask: Bone Jack Designs
I first started noticing Bone Jack Designs’s Instagram posts when he posted this awesome sketch of Ken Dryden. I quickly hit the follow button, but notices most of his posts were these cool sketched vintage men’s fashion posts. Not your typical hockey post, but as somebody who enjoys artistic ability I caught myself drawn to all his posts. Occasionally there would be a post modern house or other goalie/hockey thrown in there, then around march almost all his posts have been goalies.
I’m not the only one who has taken note of Bone Jack Designs. Some of his sketches have shown up on Instastories for CCM, The Goal Net (TGN) and others. I was humbled when I woke up to a notification that he had tagged me in a post. The post was a sketch of his that looked just like the picture I had posted the previous day of my equipment before a beer league game. Somehow his sketch looks better than the actual picture.
Bone Jack Designs’s hockey sketches make sense has he has been playing hockey since the age of five in Calgary. He started playing goalie two years later at the age of seven. Growing up in Calgary it’s no surprise that one of his favorite goalies as a kid was Mike Vernon.
“He’s about my size, and growing up in the ‘80’s in Calgary, he was the best,” he said. “When I was a little older, I also loved Richter, Hasek, Hebert, Cujo, Dafoe, lots of great guys in the 90’s.”
These days his favorite goalie still wears the flaming ‘C’, with David Rittich is his favorite. “I just like his presence on the ice,” he said.
Now 38, like me he’s had many of years in the game, and watching it. Having moved to North Dakota at the age of 11, he continued playing hockey competitively through high school, then on the Minot State University-Bottineau club team. It was in high school that he had his most memorable moment on the ice, winning a playoff game in overtime to reach the conference tournament.
He has a different most memorable hockey moment though – watching his nieces and nephews play in the Minnesota High School Hockey Tournament. For those not familiar with this extravaganza, they sell out the Xcel Energy Center where the Wild play not just for the title games, but for the other games of the tournament as well. All games are also aired on network TV with Lou Nanne doing color commentary. A few years ago Gary Thorne was doing the play by play as it was on his bucket list.
After completing his competitive career at the age of 21, Bone Jack Designs was burned out from the game. He says he didn’t skate for about eight years, and only made a brief return to fill in for a friend in a beer league game, but didn’t enjoy it because the team was getting beat handily.
“I got scored on a lot,” he said. “My girlfriend (hot_tramp_vintage) encouraged me to buy some new gloves and a new mask, and I started with one drop-in hockey session. From that, I had 3 offers for regular pick-up games. Goalies are in demand in Fargo-Moorhead, I guess.”
Hockey is one side of Bone Jack Designs, and the reason I reached out to him. Art is another. He started drawing as a kid (mostly goalies), but three years ago he started drawing fashion related pieces and his craft has sort of evolved from there.
Looking at his sketches you’d think art is Bone Jack Designs’s full time job, but it’s not. He works in technical support helping doctors process their claims. “It’s a high stress job, so the drawing is a much needed outlet,” he said. I wish I could make art my full time job, but it’s mostly just a small side gig.”
With some social media artists creating pieces that look realistic, Bone Jack Designs’s self-taught sketeches are uniquely different.
“Drawing makes me happy,” he said. “ I hope that shows in my art. I want others to feel happy when they look at my pictures.”
If you scroll through Bone Jack Designs’s Instagram feed you’ll see the mix of hockey, fashion and architecture. One thing you’ll notice though as it usually goes in groups of one genre or another.
“I draw what I’m into at the time,” he said. Some days I’m really feeling hockey, some days I feel like drawing a jacket. My girlfriend and I are really into vintage clothing and furniture, so that’s a big reason for the mix.”
The latest focus for Bone Jack Designs has been goalies. Something I’m thankful for.
“I’ve been fortunate to have some support from people like yourself, the goal net, goalie_gear_gram, puregoalie, just to name a few, who have reposted some of my stuff,” he said. “I’ve had lots of positive responses to it, and that’s what’s encouraged me to draw more goalies. The goalie/hockey community online is a very positive place, and I’m so happy and humbled to have such support.”
When asked what other social media influencers he likes/recommends, Bone Jack Designs listed: goalie_gear_gram, TheGoalNet, Puregoalie, and goaliegearnerd. “I like anything gear-related,” He said. “90shockeycards and cardboardadventures are both really cool. Your washed_up_goalie is great, too. I really like the highlights of your games. There are some fashion ones I like too, like Ethanmwong.”
If you like Bone Jack Designs’s sketches, be sure to visit his Etsy shop where you can purchase prints.