Sneakers by VICE has profiled Gary Lockwood, better known to sneaker enthusiasts as Freehand Profit, for its latest episode.
VICE met up with Freehand Profit to tour his studio at Snkr Inc. and watch him dissect super limited sneakers. Lockwood creates stunning masks from the sneakers he chops up, and clients like Kevin Durant, Method Man, and Everlast pay top dollar for the privilege of owning his masks.
“On average, each mask can take anywhere from four to six weeks — but they really have a life of their own,” Freehand Profit told VICE. “Some of them are completed in just a day.”
Moreover, Lockwood has collaborated with the biggest sneaker brands in the world including Nike and adidas. His art has garnered an enormous following on social media but his true goal is adding to hip-hop culture in a meaningful way. “[Hip-hop] had a huge impact on me,” says Lockwood in the film. “I sample the sneakers the way a DJ samples a record…I always look at the fifth element of hip-hop as participation. If I was going to be a part of this culture I had to participate in it.”
Check out the Sneakers by VICE episode below and share your thoughts in the comments below. We’ve featured Freehand Profit on WearTesters several times. For more, check out the mask Freehand Profit made for Miyazaki’s Princess Monoke.