The Sports Portrait
Mcmillen began his career as a pro climber and eventually realized that he could be paid more as a photographer than an athlete (at least in his sport).
Since then, he’s stopped living out of his van and shoots portraits of athletes (and the occasional CEO) from just about every sport. He says that pro athletes “tend to be very image savvy these days. A photo shoot with a professional basketball or football player can be a lot like a celebrity shoot with an actor or musical icon, involving handlers and publicists and egos galore.” Though he finds that this challenge is what makes his job more interesting.
Because of time constraints with his subjects, he sometimes needs to shoot composite backgrounds, like the image above of Kevin Durant. He finds that this gives him more flexibility to tell the story as he imagined it, since he sometimes only has 15 minutes to shoot an athlete in front of a white backdrop or in the locker room.
He had 30 minutes with racing phenom Danica Patrick (below), and I’m not sure about Andre Agassi (at right) but I thought the shot was nicely balanced.
Jared discusses his gear in the article, too, and makes a “prediction” that in ten years every still shooter will be a “photo-videographer” because of the rapidly advancing technology. You can read more on their website.
On a side note, our Los Angeles-based photographer Caesar Lima lent his photograph to the cover of the same issue. We’ll be talking about Caesar in a future post, since he’s been featured in a few other places recently himself: