What would you do if your job involved going to the biggest sporting occasions in Ireland? Three rookie photographers got the opportunity to find out. They also had the chance to turn their hobby into an exciting career with Inpho Photography and award winning sports photographer Billy Stickland. He is renowned for his powerful images and is an expert in the highly competitive world of sport photography. They will have to impress him with their sports knowledge and show a keen eye for a good shot.
During the first week, the candidates need to get to grips with new equipment as well as their main task - getting a good features shot as they go head to head with their subject, boxer Bernard Dunne. As Bernard’s only weeks away from the biggest fight of his life – the European title fight against Esham Pickering – he’s on tenderhooks, so it’s vital the candidates work quickly and maintain a professional air.
By the end of the first week, three have become two and the tension mounts as the remaining candidates work for the first time at a live action event. This is a real test, they can no longer control their environment and Billy wants good action shots. How they perform by the touchline is crucial. The first assignment is at a school’s hurling match at O’ Toole Park, Dublin, where Billy wants to see how they get on in this environment without guidance. Afterwards he gives a tutorial on where they went wrong before their next event. Can they keep their cool at the match? Do they keep their eye on the ball as they struggle to send the photos back to Billy on the laptops?
However all of the other gruelling assignments and Billy’s criticism are only a build up to their toughest challenge yet and their final test: covering the International Rules Match in Croke Park. They will have to draw on all they have learned over the two weeks to work as a professional sports photographer and get those winning shots in the can.
This is no longer a game. The pressure is on.