Just as we wrapped up the discussion involving amateur photographer Brooklyn Beckham shooting for a prestigious fashion brand, basketball superstar and now amateur photographer Kevin Durant put down the basketball and picked up his Canon 7D to capture the Super Bowl as a credentialed photographer. In his writeup for the Player's Tribune, he tells his story and shares what he captured.
For those who aren't aware of the Player's Tribune, the site founded by retired superstar athlete Derek Jeter, was made to give an inside glimpse of the athlete's life, giving them a platform to share their stories from their unique perspective.
Yesterday, for Super Bowl 50, basketball star Kevin Durant decided to take on the challenge of capturing the biggest sporting event in America.
When I was invited by The Players’ Tribune and the NFL to be a credentialed photographer on the sidelines during the Super Bowl, I said, 'I’ll do it' before they even finished their question. Seriously, that’s a dream offer...
...I’ve got a lot of interests outside of basketball, and one of them is doing things I haven’t done before, like stepping into the shoes of a photographer and learning about what it’s all about. I may be just starting out, but I also like to think that at my height, I might have some different angles than other photographers. After all, you’ve gotta play up your strengths.
Durant goes on to say that this "dream opportunity" almost did not happen. Leaving with his team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, from Orlando to Oakland, he almost forgot his camera.
What did I forget? I kept driving, but it was still bothering me. Then it hit me: the black bag on the dresser. My Canon 7D. My camera was in there.
I was able to turn around and swoop it up and still make it to the airport with a couple minutes to spare. Coach Donovan, thanks for not leaving without me. Moral of the story: show up with the right tools for the job. This weekend, I guess I had two jobs.
I’m learning how tough these action shots are to get; they happen so fast. It’s hectic following the action, then checking your settings in-between plays. It’s a lot of guessing and adjusting as you go... The biggest thing I learned is something I knew on a certain level, but didn’t know until tonight: sports photography is hard work, and it takes a lot of skill and focus in a crazy atmosphere with a lot of distractions. I have a ton of respect for the people who do this as a profession.
Adding to this story when he received his photographer's vest given out to all credentialed photographers, the vest turned out to be too small for his 6'11" frame. "I know it was a requirement to wear the vest on the field as a credentialed photographer … but I don’t know what to say. It was too small," Durant said.
To view his full gallery and story, take a look here on the Player's Tribune.
So, what do you think? How did he fare on the sidelines? Should he quit his day job for photography?
Images used with permission.