FPA Member Profile

Kieran McManus – BPI
All Images – Kieran McManus / BPI

Career

Highlights

  • 2007 – 2010 BA Hons Photographic Practice at University of Wales Cardiff
  • 2005-2007 – Freelancing for Mid Somerset Series newspapers
  • 2007-2009 – Freelancing for Wales News Service and IPS
  • 2010 – Back Page Images/Shutterstock
  • FIFA World Cups (2)
  • FIFA Club World Cups (1)
  • UEFA European Championships (3)
  • FA Cup Finals (3)
  • UEFA Champions League Finals (6)
Q&A with Kieran McManus

What came first, sport or photography?
Sport for sure. Football has always been my main passion since I can remember. Photography came later on and the two found a way together.

Who did you look up to when you were young, and who has helped you most with your development?
At Uni, I’d always look in the Guardian to see what had been used from the previous days/nights games. Tom Jenkins, Laurence Griffiths, Michael Regan, Eddie Keogh and many others were names I always saw and their work was always what I wanted to aspire to produce. I also loved the work of Stuart Roy Clarke in showing other sides of the sport that you didn’t see in the newspapers. In terms of who has helped me…Javier Garcia, he took a chance on me when I left university and has pushed me to constantly improve.

One change for the better to improve football photography for the next generation of photographers?
Protect the value of our industry by getting clients to appreciate the importance of good photography, so that the industry can survive.

Favourite football ground to work at and why?
Atmosphere wise, hard to look past Anfield or Borussia Dortmund’s Westfallenstadion. But photography wise, probably Camp Nou, home of Barcelona. Good backgrounds, good floodlights and probably the world’s best ever player, Lionel Messi.

Do you have a favourite memory or anecdote from your time as a football photographer?
As a Liverpool fan, the 2019 Champions League final in Madrid takes some beating. Photographing England’s run to the 2018 World Cup semi-finals was great, too.

Favourite footballer to work with and why?
Lionel Messi. Easiest footballer to photograph.

Canon, Nikon or Sony?
Canon

First match photographed?
Grass roots would be my local side Cheddar FC but professionally, the huge South West local derby of Yeovil Town v Bristol Rovers.

Some advice for youngsters?
Look at what your superiors are producing, and aspire to be that level, whilst also finding your own style of working.

Biggest lesson learnt?
To not beat yourself up if you have an off day. Sometimes things out of your control dictate whether or not you get ‘the shot’.

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