Kevin Breen is a high school photography teacher with a B.A. in Visual Arts Education and is currently working on his Masters Degree in Photography. Breen learned to fish on the small inland lakes in the suburbs of Detroit. Breen’s first memorable experience in fly fishing was on a family road trip to the western United States at nine years old. “All of us were a bunch of fly fishing hacks. I remember crying as my three-year-old brother outfished me with worms and a Mickey Mouse fishing outfit in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Fishing on the Yellowstone, I laugh looking back on the memory of my Dad wading out into the freezing cold river in his jeans to be outfished by a Joan Wulff look alike” just up stream.
Breen continued to work on the art and science of fly fishing while his family vacationed in the summer throughout the lakes and streams of Michigan. Breen’s inspiration for photography, however, came from his mother, as he vividly remembers a picture she had taken of a barn surrounded by low-lying fog with the Grand Tetons in the background. “It’s my first memory of a photograph that truly moved me. It was the first moment that I distinguished between a picture documenting a memory and a photograph that had meaning and emotion behind it.”
Breen believes there is something magical in the solitude and serenity found on a glassed over lake as ones fly line quietly passes overhead. Beyond photography, he also enjoys the active nature of the sport as he searches for the next monster fish. That excitement surrounding the uncertainty of knowing whether or not one will land it, is what drives Breen to religiously return to the river. He professes, “It’s these experiences that I hold so dear to my heart and that inspire me to photograph the subject of fly fishing. I am challenged daily to share the emotion and meaning behind the sport.”