FPA Member Profile

Gareth Everett – Huw Evans Picture Agency

All Images © Gareth Everett / Huw Evans Picture Agency

Career

Highlights

  • 1986-1988 National Diploma in Photography at Cross Keys College
  • 1987-1988 Freelance while in college for the South Wales Argus
  • 1988-1995 Staff Photographer at South Wales Argus, Newport
  • 1989-1990 NCTJ Photojournalism Course, Sheffield, while a trainee at the Argus
  • 1995- Staff Photographer at Huw Evans Picture Agency, Cardiff
  • UEFA Champions League Final (1)
  • FA Cup Final (1)
  • Wales International matches since 1988
  • Thousands of EFL, Premier league and Conference matches
Q&A with Gareth Everett

What came first, sport or photography?
Sport. I competed in a lot of sport while in school, mainly athletics, cross country and gymnastics, and was lucky enough to represent Wales in gymnastics. As I became interested in photography it was natural to take my camera to events. Thinking back, the amount of film I must have wasted when I started off is frightening, and there will be a certain generation who will remember the oval advice labels stuck to prints that were too dark, out of focus or just “blurry”. It was probably those labels that encouraged me to find out how to improve.

Who did you look up to when you were young, and who has helped you most with your development ?
I think it’s important that photographers look for influences from all aspects of photography, and the work of the Magnum photographers, and also Don McCullin and Ansel Adams inspired me, but the two biggest influences on me as a sports photographer were Chris Smith and Eamonn McCabe. The NCTJ course proved to me that you will learn the most from other photographers doing the same job, so every photographer I’ve ever sat next to at a match has taught me something.

One change for the better to improve football photography for the next generation of photographers?
Encourage young photographers that good pictures don’t just happen at Premier League grounds

Favourite football ground to work at and why?
Liberty Stadium, Swansea. I predominantly cover Wales based teams, and the Wales National squad, so the Liberty is a regular haunt for me. Great staff, friendly environment and good working conditions with few restrictions, plus THE best sweet dispenser in a media room.

Do you have a favourite memory or anecdote from your time as a football photographer?
Not sure this can be classed as a favourite, but it had the biggest impact. Covering Wales v Finland World Cup Qualifier at the old Vetch Field, Swansea in 1988, and Ian Rush sliced a shot so far wide of the goal that I watched this circular object get rapidly larger in the viewfinder of my Canon F1n. Then I’m looking up at floodlights. It brought a decent cheer from the crowd. I’ve photographed Ian Rush since and bizarrely he doesn’t remember it at all.

Favourite footballer to work with and why?
Really lucky to work with players from all the clubs in south Wales, and there have been so many over the years, both those early in their careers who have gone on to to much greater things, and those with established reputations. Sol Bamba is great to work with, giving far more time than I was due to have, and Newport County’s Mickey Demetriou insisted on helping me by carrying my lights on a shoot. It’s the things you don’t expect that make the difference. Michu challenged me to a game on the Playstation while waiting for a shoot at Swansea.

Canon, Nikon or Sony?
Canon.

First match photographed?
It would have been a Newport County match at their original Somerton Park ground, which is now a residential area, while on work experience at the Argus back in 1987

If you weren’t a photographer what would you be?
I really don’t know. I decided from about the age of 14 I wanted to be a photographer and never considered anything else. Given the amount I’ve spent on equipment and film over the years, I’d probably be a millionaire.

Some advice for youngsters?
Don’t get disheartened or frustrated if you feel you aren’t getting any decent photographs at a match. Keep the concentration levels up and keep working because in 1/2000sec 10 minutes later you will be in a better place to capture that shot that helps make your career.
Every stunning, award winning pic you will ever see was just a possibility 2 seconds before it was taken.

Biggest lesson learnt?
On a practical level, carry two of the things you are most likely to lose, but don’t keep them together, and check your kit before you leave the house/office. Also be prepared to help someone else if they are having technical issues or are short of a piece of kit, someday you may need help.
Finally, you’re only as good as your next picture, that’s the one that may or may not keep your clients, employer, or yourself happy.

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