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I met Will Fox for the first time at Shark Fights 15 (which, it turns out, was his first combat sports event). My brother and I were there to cover the fights and Will, being about our same age, and us all just sort of gravitated to each other. We had a great time chatting and commenting on the fights (that was actually the first fight I ever covered as well – but don’t tell on me please!). Will seems to have kicked-in the door to the party and made a quick name for himself in the combat sports photography world. He has a natural penchant for the artistic side of the sport – preferring, it would seem, to shoot the “action of the mundane” and making it look like it was the center of attention. KNUXX counts itself lucky to feature some of his great work. Here are the answers to our recent Q&A:
How did you get your start in photography & why did you choose to get into combat sports photography?
I come from Automotive photography. For a few years I tried to get into the combat photography, but due to media access only it was difficult. I had lunch with Carlos Montoya from ABQ Sports and he asked if I wanted to shoot Shark Fights. I made some contacts at the fight and the rest is history. I was drawn to combat sports due to the raw passion and the difficulty to shoot through the cage. I always look forward to the challenge.
How long have you been a photographer & how long have you been in the combat sports scene?
I have been around the fight world for almost a year. New to the scene, but I have not passed up one opportunity for practice. From trips with the KNUXX crew to southernColoradoandEl PasoTexas, I have have probably shot 15+ fights in the past year.
What was your first equipment purchase?
I actually skipped the film era. I have always had some sort of mid-grade digital camera for the past 15 years. I have upgraded my gear quite a bit in the past year.
If money wasn’t an issue, what equipment would you own?
I would probably pick up two of the new Canon 1D X’s ($6,800 ea). With the current momentum, I am right on track for my “dream bag” in the next year.
Where/How did you learn the art?
Mentors mentors mentors… Practice practice practice…
What keeps you coming back to the events and taking shots?
The fighters. Period. I have built some great relationships with gym owners, fighters and their managers. Additionally, it keeps me inspired to see my shots published in blogs, papers, magazines and personal websites.
What is your favorite aspect of shooting action photography?
Hanging out with the other media geeks and the camaraderie of the fighters.
What is your least favorite aspect?
Working on fights with a strict deadline. Emailing 10-20 photos within 45 minutes of the event ending is often stressful. If I leave the venue by 10:00 I am lucky if I get to bed by 2:00. It is also hard to see a friend lose in the cage/ring.
Whose work do you admire/try to emulate when you shoot?
Castillo, Cozzone, and Demattos are some of my favorite semi-local photographers. I am also a big fan of Esther Lin, Dave Mandel and James Law to name a few.
Do you have a favorite photo or experience?
My favorite photo changes weekly. Some of my most enjoyable times are joining Brandon Gibson for a mitt session atJackson’s. I also enjoy the experience of following Carlos Condit through his training camps. I enjoy shooting behind the scenes to capture each fighter’s deep passion behind the blood, sweat and vomit.
I came up with the photo profile “The Fox Identity” because I am always looking to identify someone’s passion. I enjoy thinking outside the box with creative lighting, angles and techniques.
How can people contact you?
ARTICLE AND PHOTOS ARE COPYRIGHTED BY THE FOX IDENTITY 2011 & KNUXX 2011