Kevin Kirk: My Favourite 25 Photos from 2016

December 31, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

 

Niall Horan (One Direction)

I’ve shot hundreds of golfers on the Swilcan Bridge this year but none more as high profile or viewed as Niall Horan, out enjoying a game at the home of golf with his new management team from Modest Golf. It’s a great feeling getting an exclusive.

Click here to see exclusive images of Niall Horan in action at the home of golf. 

Peter Mullan (Old Tom Morris) - Tommy’s Honour

Behind the scenes photography during production of award winning film Tommy’s Honour at the Castle Course, St Andrews. Given Old Tom Morris’ portrayal as a serious, dour disciplinarian, it was great to capture this out-take of Mullan in fits of laughter when going off script.

 

Recounter Moment - The Winning Putt 

This is how much it means when golfers hole winning putts against their buddies on the 18th green at Old Head Golf Links. 

 

Curtis Luck - Emirates Australian Open 

I remember reading renowned photographer David Cannon’s take on one of his greatest shots of all time - Jack Nicklaus playing a bunker shot at Augusta with the sand performing near perfect symmetry through impact. 

When I shot Curtis on the 16th hole at Royal Sydney at this years Emirates Australian Open, I was immediately struck by the unusual sand formation and Curtis’ eye-popping reaction. 

 

 

Cameron John - Scottish Open Stroke-play Champion 

I’m always pushing to be more creative especially with trophy shots, away from the usual presentation / sponsor shot. Here Cameron John, winner of this years Scottish Open Stroke-play at Gullane, sits on the iconic bench reflecting on his impressive win.

 

 

The Spire Invitational - Castle Stuart Golf Links 

The team at Castle Stuart Golf Links are well known for their warm hospitality which was evident by the spirit and friendships created at their own event, The Spire Invitational. When you’re photographing “as you see it” golf, it’s rare to capture a scene when everything comes together to showcase the true meaning of the event and its surroundings.

 

Recounter Moment - St Andrews Old Course 18th Green

The sheer joy between mother and son after completing their round. Why I love what I do.

 

Stenson & Mickelson - AAM Scottish Open

I call this one “the right photo wrong week”. Paired together at Castle Stuart in the AAM Scottish Open, little did I know I was creating a photo that would be THE story the following week.

 

 

Recounter Moment - St Andrews Old Course 1st Tee

The coldest he has been on a golf course and the coldest I have been on a golf course. But we wouldn’t have it any other way - it’s what we do.

 

 

Jordan Spieth - Emirates Australian Open 

Jordan Spieth turns round and pleads “Guys you just CANNOT go early on this” as he sets up for his approach to 18 on his way to winning this years Emirates Australian Open. Spieth had driven right next to the spectator rope which created an opportune vantage point immediately behind his ball and in front of the (10 deep!) spectator gallery. 

Given his plea and the significance of shot he faced, this was not the time to fire early! Probably the most under pressure moment I faced all year and I’m happy with the frame I captured. Spieth’s caddy positioned left, Spieth through impact (I took his advice) and the gallery lining the 18th fairway at Royal Sydney.

 

 

Mark Wahlberg

As social media went into “Is Mark Wahlberg in Scotland?” mode I was playing the part of lone photographer with The Lone Survivor, spending two days with his real life entourage. 

Here he strides along with his game face as Alex his caddy marvels at looping for one of Hollywood's biggest stars.

Click here to see exclusive images of Mark Wahlberg in action on the Old Course and at Kingsbarns Golf Links. 

 

 

The Coyne Cup - 16th Hole Enniscrone Golf Club 

As a golf photographer exclusively shooting golf, I normally stick to shooting golfers than golf courses. But sometimes you’re blown away (that’s a double meaning btw) seeing a hole for the very first time, the lighting is perfect and you have what I call “cloud shift”, when it’s windy enough to anticipate light falling onto the scene you’re trying to capture.

 

 

Recounter Moment - St Andrews Old Course 18th Green

There are just so many moments that happen on this green.

 

 

Tyrrell Hatton - Alfred Dunhill Links Champion

There is always a scramble amongst the photography media to get best spot for the obligatory Dunhill Links trophy shot on the Swilcan Bridge.  As my week’s work was already wrapped up I took the opportunity to trade the classic backdrop for an alternative side profile view, (fortunately!) benefitting from the burst of flash being deployed by my colleagues.

 

Andrew Dodt & Brett Rumford - The Himalayas 

Surreal moment of the year capturing tour golfers Andrew Dodt and Brett Rumford having a putting competition on the Himalayas. Love how these guys play under pressure week in week out for huge rewards but celebrate as if they’d just won a major.

 

Recounter Moment - St Andrews Old Course 17th Road Hole 

I witnessed lots of celebrations on the 17th hole this year. Always fulfilling to know this moment is hanging framed on a wall as he raises a dram to his 2016.

 

 

Alex Noren AAM Scottish Open 

Back to Castle Stuart where Alex Noren has just won the Scottish Open and he’s clearing out his locker. Before heading off he signs his name plate for the locker room guys. Nice touch from a nice guy who has had an amazing 2016. 

 

 

St Andrews Boys Open Matchplay Final 

When you cover the matchplay final of a prestigious boys tournament at the home of golf you cannot control where the match will finish. So a real bonus framing the winner / runner up handshakes against this iconic backdrop. Gaku and John played out a great final.

 

 

Adam Scott - Emirates Australian Open 

I very rarely shoot golfers in good light with most of my Recounter assignments shot during the day in harsh summer light on exposed (links) surroundings. Step forward Adam Scott at the crack of dawn at the Emirates Australian Open as the rising sun flickers softly through the pines. The light was just magical.

 

 

Recounter Moment - St Andrews Old Course 18th Green

And another moment for the wall....

 

 

Thomas Detry - Foshan Open, China 

Sometimes in photography you just have to seize the opportunity. Whilst in China at The Foshan Open I introduced myself to Thomas, named dropped a mutual friend and next minute I’m on the range with him doing a quick photoshoot. A top 5 finish that week helped him win a European Tour card for next season. It’s always nice to get a portfolio shot early in the career of someone tipped to go far.

 

 

Recounter Moment - Royal Portrush Golf Club 

The biggest downpour all year. 12 guys started 3 guys finished (well 4 if you include me). We really got to know the halfway hut that day and I really got to know Ireland this year. Can’t wait to be back there in 2017.

 

 

Callaway St Andrews Links Longest Day Challenge 

Four weary golfers from the longest day challenge as the sun sets on the longest day of the year. A great cause and spectacular evening as the sun went down and the moon came up. 

 

 

Recounter Moment - St Andrews Old Course 18th tee

This is how you celebrate when your ball bounces off a house AND a car before bouncing back into play.

 

Ellie 

Move over Niall Horan…..this is by far my favourite (and last!) shot of the year! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Kevin Kirk, founder of Recounter.co.uk. Happy new year and ATB in 2017!

 

 

 

 


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