FPA Member Profile

Alex Pantling – Getty Images
All Images © Alex Pantling / Getty Images

Career

Highlights

  • BA Hons second class degree in Photography at Nottingham Trent University
  • 2014-2015 – Derby County
  • 2015-2016 – Leicester City
  • 2016 – Getty Images
Q&A with Alex Pantling

Canon, Nikon or Sony?
“I’m a Canon user and have been since 2013. The initial reason was due to Nottingham Trent University using all Canon gear, meaning it was easier for me to get hold of lenses. However my first Camera was actually a Nikon D3500.”

What came first, sport or photography?
“Sport came first for me, by quite a long way. I was obsessed with all sports, specifically Formula One from the age of four, and began playing football at the age of six. The reason I ended up choosing photography is because of my art background. I was always drawing and painting footballers in my spare time as I kid, and I eventually decided to mix my two passions, sports and art, and put all my attention into becoming a sports photographer.”

Do you have a favourite memory or anecdote from your time as a football photographer?
“Hands down, my favourite football match to work at was in 2016 – Leicester City vs. Everton. This is the match in which Leicester City lifted the Premier League trophy for the first time in their history. Being a Leicester lad, and having a season ticket at the club back when they were in the third tier of English football, I found it hard to understand how I’d managed to get to a point where I was standing in the centre circle of the King Power Stadium, photographing my side lift that trophy.”

First football match photographed?
“The first professional game I covered was a League One tie between Notts County and Walsall. I managed to get into the ground after realising that the club was partnered with Nottingham Trent Uni, (although my pass was under the name of Alan Pantling). Walsall scored four in the first half with plenty of celes coming my way, something I thought at the time happened every game. Turns out I was wrong.”

Favourite footballer to work with?
“Working with footballer’s face to face isn’t something I have done too often in my short time as a sports photographer. However, thanks to my contacts with Leicester City I have managed to have spent time with some of their players on a number of occasions. Due to his attitude of just not giving a monkeys about what he looked like, and also bringing his own ideas to the studio, I’d say the best player to work with would be Austrian Christian Fuchs.”

Favourite football ground to work at, and why?
“The most impressive stadiums I have worked in would be Wembley, The Etihad, Anfield, Goodison, etc. However, my favourite stadium to shoot at would be Brentford’s Griffin Park, due to the friendly atmosphere and lovely black backgrounds (at one end). It was also where I shot my first game for Getty, so more fond memories.
It’s a ground junior photographers would fight over to get access to!”

Biggest Lesson Learnt in the business?
“The biggest lessons I have learned in the past five years would have all came from the mistakes I have made. The most common mistake I have had to learn from was checking that my batteries were fully charged and my cards were empty!”

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