After visiting numerous boxing gyms in East London, Richard Cannon noticed that the photography illustrating boxers was often depictions of their raised fists. Contemplating the idea of creating more engaging images, Richard decided to focus on the boxer’s muscle tension and facial expressions. Shooting boxers of all ages and abilities, Richard has titled this project, ‘Spar to Camera’.
When the photographer first visited the gyms, he noticed that the images of the boxers on the walls were static shots of boxers with their arms raised. Feeling that this traditional approach was very dated, Richard decided that it would be beneficial and engaging to photograph boxers in the ring, directly after their training.
In order to steer away from the traditional boxing photography, Richard asked the photographed boxers to shadow box towards the lens. The advantage which he describes this as having is that the trained bodies and expression allowed for various poses.
The project included boxers of all ages – ranging from teens to retired boxers, one of which whom was in his 90s – and was shot at various boxing gyms around the East End of London.
When glancing at the images, an old documentary tone and feel is reflected. This is due to the use of 3 light heads on either side of the ring and the conversion of the images to black and white.
Richard aims to have an exhibition in the near future, where the images will be printed in large scale onto brushed aluminium and presented in a boxing ring – so that the audience can feel what it would be like to fight the opponents.
Award-winning commercial conceptual portrait photographer, Richard, works mostly within the field of editorial photography. Inspired by his father to take up photography and his love for surrealism and Dali, Richard has shot for a variety of magazines including Country Life, BBC Music, British Airways inflight magazine, and Four Four Two football magazine, amongst others. Each project is undergone with the aim to deliver an engaging image, whilst still satisfying his own creative eye. This keen, creative eye is reflected through Richard’s work being exhibited in the National Portrait Gallery, London’s acquisitions.
To see more of Richard’s work, visit his Cherrydeck profile or his website, here. To see more inspiring projects on how photographers are shifting the industry-landscape, have a look at Stronger Together by Emma Boonne. 🍒