The expert photographers who cover The Open deserve great praise for the way they help inspire new players to the game. No one works harder than these men and women in sometimes testing conditions.
The world-renowned golf photographer David Cannon was in the Spectator Village during The Open, taking a well-earned break after hours of following Tiger Woods and Co on the Old Course in often roasting temperatures. Recently struggling with Covid-19, the hard-grafting photographer admitted to feeling exhausted, but was still smiling (it’s his 39th Open this year).
The Golf Foundation needed a photographer for a kids’ golf event with Nick Dougherty in the SwingZone, a venue where we have been introducing youngsters from all backgrounds to golf all week, working with the PGA and Scottish Golf, supported by The R&A.
We asked, could David suggest one of the many great picture takers he knew present at St Andrews who we could invite to help us at short notice?
“The Golf Foundation helped me as a kid to get into golf in the first place and I’ve fond memories,” said the man whose stunning pictures of the likes of Seve Ballesteros, Carl Lewis, Maradona, Gazza, Seb Coe, Virginia Wade and many more have been enjoyed around the world for decades (in golf he has worked at 125 majors, 39 Opens and 18 Ryder Cups so far).
“I would love to help you out, I’ll do it,” was David’s immediate response.
Despite our protestations that he should enjoy his rare break from the camera, minutes later David was dodging flying Golfway soft balls amid high energy golf games in the SwingZone, while recording former Tour star and now Sky broadcaster Nick Dougherty as he inspired a visiting school group to hit their first shots in the game, one of 27 local children’s groups visiting the Golf Foundation at St Andrews this year.
Afterwards, the Getty Images photographer reminisced about his own start in golf at Golf Foundation events which led to him falling in love with the game and playing in the top amateur golf events as a young man in the mid 1970s.
There is currently an excellent display of David’s pictures of Seve Ballesteros in The R&A Museum in St Andrews (until December).
See more on David’s work here.