At Home with Joe Goodwin

A few of Joe Goodwin’s favorite things

By Janice Carter Levitch

Photos by Kathryn Harrington

Joe Goodwin is a photographer, Air Force veteran and African art collector.

“My parents gave me my first camera for Christmas when I was six years old. I’ve been into photography since then,” he recalled.

“I started taking pictures with my first camera and couldn’t afford to have the pictures developed. So, I would send off the film and never go to pick it up,” Goodwin said. “That’s a funny memory. But, I was always the guy who enjoyed taking pictures of people. … Fast forward to today, I shoot a lot of events and portraits. The personal stuff is fun. That’s what my passion is, the freedom to create beautiful images.”

Goodwin recently welcomed The Voice-Tribune into his home to share a few of his favorite things.

1. Bronze Sculpture

The bronze sculpture is a piece Goodwin has had since 2004. “It was from an African art dealer in Columbus, Ohio. I saw it and knew I wanted it for my collection. One thing is for sure, I never get tired of looking at it because it’s just extraordinary.”

2. Roller Skates

“I bought my skates in 1980 after joining the Air Force in 1979 right out of high school,” Goodwin explained. “When I arrived at my first assignment at Columbus Air Force Base in Columbus, Mississippi, they had just built a skating rink on base, and I got a part-time job working there. So, I thought if I’m going to work at a skating rink, I better learn how to skate. They’ve been all over the world with me, including the Philippines, Vietnam and Saudi Arabia, too.”

3. Walking Sticks

“I got my first walking stick about 15 years ago from a friend who sold African Art,” Goodwin said. “It has to be really unique and stand out for me to add it to my collection. The only thing in this collection that isn’t a walking stick is an old military sword that has been in my family for years. I even remember admiring it when I was a young boy.”

4. Crystal Gorilla

Goodwin saw the crystal gorilla in a local shop and was drawn to it. “I noticed it’s numbered on the bottom, which meant it was part of a special collection,” he said. “A few people have wanted it, but I’m going to hang on to it. It’s absolutely a favorite thing in my home.”

5. Ornamental Weaponry

Goodwin’s collection of ornamental weaponry, he explains, “was created by Negritos in the Philippines. When I was leaving there, they presented it to me as a thank you for being so kind to them, and everything was created out of old materials they collected.” VT