MAGIC HOUR BEGINS
The magic hour begins. Seconds after dawn, the 17th green at The Hertfordshire G&CC is bathed in golden light. "As you take more photos, you get better at being in the right place at the right time. To take photos like this in the summer, you need to get out of bed soon after 3am and get busy - because the Sun doesn't wait for anyone. So I climbed the ladder, and waited for the first rays to break over the hill in the distance. And when they did ... wow. This was a transcendental experience - one of the magic moments a photographer lives for".
Sunlight illuminates the distinctive undulations around a green at Berkhamsted Golf Club. "Mother Nature was largely uncooperative that evening, but I had spotted this view earlier, and knew it offered the chance of a good photo if only the sun would break out. Sure enough, just before it set, the sun gave me this beautiful moment of light."
Land and sky in perfect harmony, at the start of a beautiful day on the New Course at Burhill GC in Surrey, England. "I was honoured to be asked to photograph the BGL Golf clubs in 2015, including of course the flagship, Burhill Golf Club. In many ways this is a classic 'magic hour' photo - spectacular sky, beautiful light, some interest in the foreground, and a stand of attractive, well-lit trees. Taking this photograph is all about timing - nature (and the course architect) really supplied all I needed."
A sight to make any golfer sigh. The 18th at Wildernesse. "Would you look at that ... could you want a more picturesque scene, as a golfer? To get this shot, I climbed up onto the windowsill in the accountant's little office, upstairs in the clubhouse, and poked my lens through the window. There wasn't a shred of doubt in my mind about this photo - I knew it was a beauty as soon as I saw the view. All I had to do was wait for the right light, which duly came. And check out that fairway, and the new white flags on the pins. Wildernesse did themselves proud."
DO THE USAIN BOLT
It's amazing what you can get a fourball to do, at Tewkesbury Park. "I can't tell you how much I love this one, or where the idea to do the Usain Bolt came from. But they all seemed to be in a good mood, so on the spur of the moment I struck the pose, and they all copied me spontaneously. Legends, all of them."
The October sun sets on The Shire London - Seve Ballesteros's masterpiece in the UK. "It's a dream sunset, on the signature hole. Seve is a true golf icon, and his only UK golf course is full of wonderful views like this. And look - if you're commissioning a golf photoshoot, this image shows why you should always try to put out clean, white flags ... They stand out beautifully."
Two greens in a stunning corner of Sand Moor GC, near Leeds. "I think that this photo shows how you don't always need direct sunlight to get a good picture. I always look for other greens in the background - although you have to get your focusing right to get both pins sharp".
Sunset nears, behind the 18th at Roehampton Club. "Time and again I was drawn to this sight at the back of the green on Roehampton's 18th. What a stunning sight it is. This is a true wide-angle shot, using my trusty Nikon 14-24 mm at its widest setting."
SPECTACULAR MOOR ALLERTON
It's the gorgeous 18th at Moor Allerton GC - but the course doesn't finish here. There's 27 championship-quality holes at this venue north of Leeds, West Yorkshire. "MAGC used this as the signature photo on the home page of their new website. It's always wonderful to see your photos being used. What a gorgeous 18th - and there's nine more beauties to come, too. Moor Allerton's 27th is equally as photogenic."
JUMP FOR JOY 1
Another successful putt drops as junior golfers enjoy a Crown Golf coaching session at Pine Ridge GC near Camberley in Surrey, England. "This photo has appeared all over the world in magazines, including some front covers. I particularly like the Metallica salute from the boy in red... The light that day was perfect, and these lads were great fun to work with."
JUMP FOR JOY 2
Junior golfers celebrate a successful putt at the Crown Golf Academy at Pine Ridge GC near Camberley, Surrey, England. "This pair of photos have been very popular - there's a joy and energy about them which I love. They are slightly hyper-real .. I gave them the works in post-production, as you can see, but it's a creative decision I was happy with".
One of many gorgeous golf holes at Surrey Downs GC. "I like to find slowing shapes on a golf course - see how the edge of this green zig-zags as it climbs the step in the green. That's what I think makes this photo - that, and the amazing light of course. I had to edit out some horrible sun flares in this one - it took a bit of work".
A gentle sunset at Dreamland in Azerbaijan. "This is my favourite spot at Dreamland, but you have to be very precise with your positioning. Note where the white flag in the foreground is. Stand any higher, and it's lost in the water. Any lower, and you don't get the full effect of the undulations. Very happy with the way this one worked out."
A golfer hits balls at the range. "This gentleman was very photogenic - his stubble, his cap, his shirt, all had fantastic texture. Lit well and taken against the dark background of the driving range, this photo shows one of golf's most attractive demographics if you're in the business - the 25-34 male golfer."
The picture-perfect scene on the 18th at Branston G&CC. "You can't beat a good lily pond if you're photographing a golf hole. If it's got a fountain, and a commanding clubhouse in the background, even better."
LILY POND DAWN
The magic hour proceeds. Minutes after dawn, the millpond which guards the 15th green at The Hertfordshire G&CC provides a tranquil setting. "Who wouldn't want to take a photo of a scene like this? It's breathtaking. One of my all-time favourites."
Head pro Michael Sweenie discusses swing data with a pupil at Dreamland Golf Club in Azerbaijan. "Mike is in charge of the superb IMG teaching complex at Dreamland, and he is a good example of what you can achieve as a PGA golf coach. Fabulous location, fabulous setup, and they are making a real difference introducing golf to the country. Mike, Elshan, Anton and the team coach hundreds of juniors at Dreamland, and the facilities are spot-on. And for a photographer, the light's great too..."
Ominous early-morning clouds loom over Burhill GC's New Course. "Red sky in morning, shepherd's warning...they say. This particular morning gave me the red skies but not the rain, so on this occasion ... jog on, shepherds."
NO BETTER DAY
There's no better day at the golf club, than when you're teaching your grandson. "I think this photograph says everything about what we are all trying to achieve in the sport. I couldn't be happier with it. They both ignored me beautifully, which makes for a nicely un-selfconscious photo,"
A golf lesson at Aldwickbury Park GC. "The PGA pro and his pupil were kind enough to let me get close for a few photos. Here, I like the way the light settles on the young golfer's face."
Is there a better view from the clubhouse terrace than this one? At Branston G&CC in Staffordshire, England. "The view of Branston's 18th is irresistible. It is transfixing. I kept climbing ever-higher to get more of the shot in frame. This photo was taken while standing on the top rung of my stepladder, on the top of some iron stairs which themselves overlook the balcony. I wouldn't have risked it, on a windy day, but it was beautifully calm. You just know, sometimes, when you have a great picture in the can".
A view up the first hole at Aldwickbury Park GC, near Harpenden in England. "From the moment I looked back up the first hole at Aldwickbury Park, I knew I was in for a good shoot. They had let the rough grow, the fairway shapes had been mown in nicely, and the greens were immaculate. Sure enough, I got some beauties - including this one of the downhill first hole."
Hitting the sweet spot at Tewkesbury Park, as dawn breaks. "This is the signature hole at Tewkesbury Park, a very pretty short par three with Tewkesbury Abbey just visible through the trees in the distance. This is definitely what you call a crowd-pleaser."
THE SHORT COURSE
Boyfriend and girlfriend tee off on the short course at Wycombe Heights Golf Centre. "When you get asked to photograph a golf club, you are often asked to try and spot young, attractive couples "for the website". Because it's all about demographics, of course. But you very rarely find the perfect models on a random day of the week. Here, at Wycombe Heights, I found just that - they were two lovely people in every sense of the word, and you couldn't ask for a nicer, more natural photo really."
MAGIC HOUR AT WILDERNESSE
A beautiful dawn illuminates the clubhouse and putting green at Wildernesse GC in Kent. "For a few moments, the dawn sky was an incredible colour. Truly unbelievable, and only me and some deer were awake to see it. It was still, quiet, and perfect. This was taken just before the sun came up. Within a few minutes, the sky was totally different. Moments like these make it all worthwhile."
HEY GOOD LOOKING
A brochure shot at Wycombe Heights Golf Centre. "These two worked in the pro shop at the golf club, and I think they were a couple. I exploited this in a protracted session where I put them on top of a mound, so I could photograph them against the sky for advertising purposes. I took the photos lying prone on the grass, pointing my camera upwards. Images like this are good for cut-outs and Photoshop work. Ideally you wound't have the clouds scudding across the sky - a clear blue background is better - but you just have to keep smapping away. Nice handshake, guys."
The Moor Allerton mist rolls in at dawn. "Maybe two minutes after I took this photo, the mist came down and it was a case of fog stops play, as regards the photoshoot. This was very, very early, with a heavy dew and to be honest I was frozen to the core that morning. I went back to the car and snoozed until the fog lifted. But I caught this one at just the right time."
BEYOND THE FRINGE
A close-up of the 18th green at Roehampton Club in London. "It's often harder than you'd think, to get a nice '18th green + clubhouse' photo. Many clubhouses just don't sit close enough for that, or if they do the view isn't particularly pretty. You have to look for alternatives. But sometimes - as here at Roehampton - york work is done for you. A winding fringe, interesting bunkers and mounds, an irregular-shaped green, and a clubhouse which sits right there, close by, at the corner. This photo makes me want to put half a dozen balls down, on the fringe, and flip some gentle lob shots onto the green, letting them roll up to the hole. And note the nicely-raked bunker .. a bit of prep went into this one."
OTHER WAY ROUND LOVE
Giving it V for Victory. "Now, taken cynically, one might feel that she's telling me to go forth and multiply. But I think she was simply giving it the other V-sign. IE: the friendly one."
Looking back down a picturesque par four - the 2nd at Aldwickbury Park. "One of those holes which is instantly photogenic. Some you have to work hard at to find the angle. Not here."
A tranquil setting as the autumn sun sets, illuminating the 7th green on the Ballesteros Masters Course at The Shire London GC, near London. "What a beautiful spot, on Seve's only golf course in the UK. This little par 3 is one of the signature holes, and most people photograph it from much closer to the green. This was a view I hadn't captured before, and the lowering sun lit it perfectly from the side. Taken in October, so it was quite late in the season for UK course photography."
Team photo after a golf day at Harrogate GC. "One of my favourite group shots. This was the Birmingham City FC Supporters Club, on a golf day up north. Great light, great expressions. I don't tend to do conventional 'golf day' shoots, as I am usually too busy photographing the whole facility, but I do love a nice group shot when I come across a good bunch of people. I emailed this photo to the society organiser afterwards, at his request."
The beautiful closing par three at The Hertfordshire G&CC, a Crown Golf club. "The Herts is one of my favourite golf courses to photograph - it has a Tour scale to it in many places. So many places you can stand and take a photo on a sunny evening."
Perfect Golf Sunrise
The perfect golfing sunrise at stunning Surrey Downs GC. "The club had prepared the course beautifully for the shoot, and their silvery-colured flags stood out perfectly against the dark trees in the background. There's a velvet-like quality about the grass on a manicured golf green, and I think this photo - with the dawn colours - captures that. It's a photo which makes you want to immediately grab your putter".
Caught on camera - five teenagers without a single mobile phone visible. "Teenagers have been playing golf on short courses for decades, of course. But these days it's much harder to prise them away from Snapchat, and get them hitting balls. This is Hoebridge GC getting it right."
MOOR ALLERTON BEAUTY
A tempting sight from behind a par three at Moor Allerton GC. "I love this light ... not too bright and contrasty, in fact rather muted and painterly. If I could bottle this light and take it with me to every golf course I photograph, I would do. One of the best from the 2016 Moor Allerton photoshoot."
BRIGHT AND EARLY
A bright start to the day at Wildernesse GC. "It's a lovely putting green, nestling right by the clubhouse. Some good slopes on it, plenty of pin positions, and with lovely views back across the 18th."
LIVING THE LIFE
Relaxing between holes in her golf cart. "This lady was on a corporate golf day, having a lovely time playing with her husband and some friends. You can really see that in her face - it's a lovely, natural smile and she's lit beautifully by the ambient light. Very much a brochure-style photograph."
A gorgeous corner of Kirtlington Golf Club. "As you reach the 4th green at Kirtlington, you discover this absolutely gorgeous spot, right by the canal. Beyond the green lies the 5th tee - an uphill par 3 - which runs at right-angles to the 4th, parallel to the canal. I took this one as the sun was setting, just before the sun came out from behind the trees. Plenty of lens flare, but also plenty of atmosphere. A completely tranquil setting, especially if you don't have to worry about how well you're hitting the ball ... "
A PGA pro marshals his boisterous pupils at Branston G&CC for just long enough for their picture to be taken. "Steve the pro had his hands full with this lot, but they were obviously all having a great time - and that's what a Saturday morning group golf lesson is all about."
A well-presented fairway sweeps down to the green, at Tewkesbury Park in the west of England. "Just a tiny bit of elevation, as shown here, can make all the difference in a photograph. I took it - as I often do - standing on the top step of a £35 five-step ladder from B&Q. That extra few feet of height often makes a picture. I buy cheap ladders because I am always bashing them against trees, so to me they're a disposable item, and I often carry a spare ladder in the car. More than once I've found myself racing to B&Q, hunting a replacement ladder as the sun goes down."
The handsome 10th hole at Aldwickbury Park GC, a BGL Golf club. "If you're a photographer, you innately learn the rule of thirds - and this photo follows those rules. Albeit subconsciously, at the time. The little group of golfers at the far right were the slowest I have ever come across... I had nice light which I wanted to use, but they loitered on the green for an eternity. You just have to smile and grit your teeth ... "
Water everywhere at Dreamland GC in Baku. "This is a Cynthia Dye design, and I met her when I went to Dreamland to photograph the course when it opened. An extremely pleasant lady, and fascinating to talk to. I've picked out this photo because of the subtly-shadowed green in the foreground. I love the gentle transition from dark to light green. To take this photo, I had to wobble on top of a ladder, on top of a high mound. I frequently put myself in peril, on a ladder, for my art."
LOOKS GOOD BOTH WAYS
An immaculate fairway sweeps downhill to the green at Hoebridge GC, in Surrey. "This hole looks and plays great from the golfer's point of view - we all love a downhill shot to the green - but it's even better presented for the photographer. The green's at a 45 degree angle to the fairway, the contour mowing snakes up to a well-defined horizon, and the dark trees give it an amphitheatre-like setting. This was the best course photo from my Hoebridge shoot."
THE SUNDAY AFTERNOON
A father-son transfer of wisdom, on the adventure golf course at Hoebridge in Surrey. "You need special permission and a long camera lens to take this kind of photograph. I love the intensity of their expressions - both trying so hard, and enjoying their Sunday afternoon's golf."
A young golfer takes dead aim on the short course at Hoebridge Golf Centre in Surrey. "This pair were great to photograph, and you couldn't wish for a nicer father-son photo. Both were good golfers, at their own level. Taking it seriously. The short course at Hoebridge is one of the better ones I have seen, with lots of elevation changes. The light was a little dull, but the people on the golf course that day were anything but."
INSIDE THE DOG LEG
Bunkers await in the dog-leg of a par four. "One of my favourite shots from Moor Allerton GC. As with all golf course photography, you need to get your depth of field spot on to do justice to this view. The distant pin, the trees on the right, and the foreground bunkers all need to be in focus."
MAGNIFICENT MOOR ALLERTON
The 14th at Moor Allerton GC is a terrific par 5, with a heroic finish across water. "A lot of golf balls end up in this lake in front of the green. It's a great setting for a hole - tucked away in its own secluded corner, at the end of a gentle dog-leg right. This hole has a real Tour feel to it, as befits a venue which has hosted many professional tournaments."
A GREAT START
Looking back down the opening hole at Wildernesse GC, in Kent, southern England. "After only five minutes, I could tell that this shoot was going to be enjoyable. The first hole is so inviting to photograph, from almost every angle around the green. This, to me, is a very conventional golf course photo, but it's bang-on. And rarely for me, the flag is very central. No need to find a forced angle to add impact to the photo - this one looks handsome looking dead-on."
A daunting shot across water faces golfers taking on the Par 3 4th, at the Seve Ballesteros-designed The Shire London. "It was a beautiful, bright day with plenty of clouds in a piercingly blue sky - which makes the reflection in the lake just about perfect. The ducks added the ripples, the tree stump supplied the foreground interest, and the reeds added the depth. Like so many holes at The Shire, a par here is something to be proud of."
The 8th green with the 4th hole beyond, at the West London Golf Centre, prior to its opening in July 2014. "The light on this day was bright but slightly flat. I didn't have much hope but afterwards I realised the photos had a painterly quality - this almost looks like an illustration, rather than a photograph. It helps that Tony and the greens staff had done an awesome job - just look at that course conditioning".
WEST LONDON STUNNER
2014 saw a new golf course open in London - West London Golf Centre, near Ruislip. "It's a thrill when you get asked to photograph a brand-new golf course which nobody has ever played before. The 9-hole course at WLGC is attached to a big, popular driving range, but far from being an afterthought, the golf course is absolutely brilliant".
Greenkeepers moments after dawn one morning. "I was motoring towards a green which sat atop a hill, when I saw a team of greenkeepers working on the horizon, silhouetted perfectly against the rising sun. I took some lovely photos of a couple of them raking the greenside bunkers, then got them to pose right on the crest of the slope. I think this is one of the more striking golf photos I have taken."
A young golfer with a back-stretching swing at the IMG Academy, Dreamland GC, Baku. "Silhouette shots are sometimes a lot easier to take, than trying to light a scene on the fly, with only a flashgun at your disposal. I could have lit this with a flash, but a) it would have put her off, and b) just take a look at that silhouette .. such movement and action. It's not a golf swing that most people could easily emulate."
Sand Moor Sunrise
Golfing beauty at Sand Moor GC, near Leeds in West Yorkshire. "It's never easy shooting straight into the sun, but modern cameras and lenses are amazing things. To be able to recover this much detail from both the bright sky and the dark shadows it creates is testament to modern technology. I think the results speak for themselves - there's a peacefulness about this photo which is also emphasised by the simplicity of the green itself. It's round and relatively flat, and looks all the more striking because of that".
Drama awaits the golfer - and the photographer - on Dreamland's 11th hole. "This view is hidden from you, until you climb a steep mound and then - bang - you're faced with perhaps the most attractive hole in all of Azerbaijan."
Looking back to the distant clubhouse, as dawn breaks over the UK's only Severiano Ballesteros-designed golf course in the UK. "The Shire London has been part of my life since a year before its launch. I first commissioned a photoshoot there in 2006 for pre-launch publicity, before I started shooting golf courses myself. I have never tired of photographing The Shire since then. Seve's design gives you so much."
The Right Moment
Unseen in the sky above, a cloud occludes the sun at exactly the right moment, at Ramsdale Park GC, a BGL Golf club. "I liked this view, but knew it needed some special light to emphasise the depth of the dip in the valley between the distant shoulder of fairway, and the plateau green. Patience was needed ... and then the sun and clouds combined to get the perfect light. The presence of the golfer in the bright orange shirt was a bonus, as was the waiting golf cart on the horizon. I stood on the top of a six-step ladder for maybe twenty minutes, waiting to get a shot like this."
Nobody's had a shave for this particular Saturday morning fourball. "Put a group of golfers in a line, and point a camera at them .. it's almost certain one of them will pinch an ear. Here we catch the moment, immediately pre-pinch."
Gentle evening light settles on a green. "When I first approached it, I thought I wasn't going to find a picture at this hole. But how wrong I was. There's a calmness and simplicity about this photograph which I keep coming back to. Plus, the colours are lovely - the subtle purple in the sky, and my favourite shade of green. The course manager and his team had really delivered the Aldwickbury Park course immaculately, and fresh new white flags sealed the deal."
A solitary tree stands guard to a Berkhamsted green illuminated by the sunset. "It was by no means the perfect sunset that night, but I had done my homework and knew that this fairway would be lit right to the green. I'm happy with this composition, with the two eye-catching trees to the right of the photo, one in shadow, one in light."
The last rays of the setting sun strike the green, at South Winchester GC in Hampshire, a Crown Golf club. "At dusk you get more time to work out where you need to be as the sun goes down. You're chasing the last rays of light all over the golf course. If the flag had been six feet to the right, this shot wouldn't have worked".
An angry sky glowers over a challenging par 3 at Moor Allerton GC. "Who needs sunshine? This one's all about composition .. as with so many of my photographs, you can divide this photo roughly into thirds. I really like the perspective on the pin, in this photo. It's a great scale, if slightly exaggerated. You can really put yourself onto the distant tee, in your imagination, attacking this pin."
A coach shows a pupil his launch monitor results on an iPad. "It's rare to see a video camera on a driving range these days. With tablets and smart phones everywhere, and launch monitors coming rapidly down in price, this sort of sight is very familiar nowadays. The guy on the right is a budding Tour pro."
A deeply contoured fairway makes its way to a distant green at Wildernesse. "This was one of my favourites from the Wildernesse shoot. I took it from well back down the hole with my longest lens, zoomed all the way in. This compresses the hole, exaggerating the contours. The trick is to get your focus point right, so everything is sharp. I more or less pulled it off. A beautiful sun-sappled scene, shadows not too dark and deep, and several lovely shades of green. A real cracker in fact."
THE CRACKER 1
The 11th hole on Burhill's Old Course - the companion photo to The Cracker 2. "The first of two views of this magnificent hole. It's just what you want to see, as a golfer. A downhill tee shot to a welcoming fairway, and a hole which sets out all its treats right before your very eyes."
THE CRACKER 2
An inviting tee shot on the Old Course at Burhill GC in Surrey. "This hole - the 11th on the Old - gets my vote as the most photogenic in the entire 36 at Burhill. This photo and The Cracker 1 prove that point. I love the stand of trees way down on the right hand side - they caught the sun perfectly at that very moment."
FIVE MORE MINUTES
Post-round, a golfer takes five on the patio. "This is nice. How long have I got ... fifteen minutes maybe? Before I have to call. Yeah, we got held up all the way round. Took half an hour longer than usual. Honestly I came home as soon as I could. What's for tea?"
Dreamland's Big Finish
Another dramatic hole at the spectacular Cynthia Dye-designed golf course at Dreamland GC in Baku, Azerbaijan. "I believe this hole will eventually become the 18th, and it is a suitably dramatic finish to a terrific new golf course. I was very privileged to be invited to photograph Dreamland on its opening weekend by IMG, who manage the venue."
KEEPING THE GREENS
A moment's pause, and then back to work at Burhill GC, in Surrey. "They stripe the fairways differently on the two courses at Burhill GC - the Old (pictured) displays the more traditional halved fairways, and the New is heavily striped and criss-crossed. That attention to detail really helps bring a photoshoot to life".
MAJESTY AT MOOR ALLERTON
Spring colours decorate a classic scene at Moor Allerton GC, near Leeds in the north of England. "This is a real favourite of mine - it has elevation, a striped fairway, a great sky, colourful blossom ... all it is lacking is a white flag on the pin, but otherwise this is what I think a golf photograph should look like. Makes you want to lift the ball on the green from the fairway below, and take on the hole."
A couple of lads pose for a photo at Hoebridge Golf Centre. "These guys were naturals in front of the camera - great smiles, and only too willing to pose for a snap. I had taken a few shots of the guy on the left in the driving range earlier, so we'd already met. I love the clear-eyed and confident look of his mate on the right. "
A picturesque end to the round at Aldwickbury Park GC near Harpenden, UK. "I always think the ideal golf club patio should have a great view of the 18th green - and Aldwickbury golfers enjoy exactly that."
Teaching at Harrogate GC. "If I point this golf club at your pocket, and pretend to say something, and you pretend to swing, he'll get his photograph then he'll bugger off and leave us alone to do the lesson, okay?"
An early ray of sunshine strikes a green at Cottesmore G&CC in West Sussex, England. "This is all about the ray of sunshine. I had an evil impulse to move the flag into the sunray in Photoshop afterwards, but quickly banished that demon. I'd never do something so artificial. This photo shows that even God can't hit the pin every time".
"What did the pro say ... hit down and through, an inch behind the ball ... don't quit on it ... strong left side, short swing ... just don't quit on it ... have faith and hit down and through, down and through ... don't quit on it ... oh God I hate bunker shots...."
Behind the green again, at Moor Allerton GC near Leeds. "Sometimes I pick out a photo purely because of the composition. I rarely put the pin bang in the middle of the frame. With my photos you'll usually find it somewhere off to the side. And look ... nice white flags. Thank you, Moor Allerton. Other golf clubs please take note. White flags make your photos look better."
It's game over, guys. Let all that's gone before be forgotten, and let's head for the bar without delay. "Three solid golfers. I had followed them around a fair bit, and they gave me some great pictures that day. I like the pose of the guy on the right - leaning in, good smile, good body shape. This photo can be used without any explanation needed - it's friends, playing golf, being respectful to each other. Golf's good like that."
Sunrise On The 9th
Dawn breaks over the dramatic 9th hole, at Test Valley GC in Hampshire. "The 9th at Test Valley just begs to be photographed. It has everything you need for a great photo - but only from behind the green. The mist rising from the lake was an added bonus".
Summer Storm Brewing
A summer storm brews at beautiful Sand Moor GC near Leeds. "It's not half the picture it is without the pink flowers. I had a couple of goes at Sand Moor that summer, both times frustrated by the weather, but most holes on the golf course give you something interesting to photograph."
MY KIM KARDASHIAN STORY
So I answered the door, and it was that Kim Kardashian wearing nothing but a policeman's helmet I tell ya.
A pretty par three at Harrogate GC, near Leeds. "This hole comes just after the turn at Harrogate, and it is one of the most attractive holes on the golf course. Like cars, golf holes often look better when photographed from the three-quarter view - get the flag around a third of the way into the photo, and get some elevation. A good photo makes you want to play the hole."
Classic English countryside at Chesfield Downs G&CC.
The Too Short Shorts
A young couple enjoy some evening golf together. "A photo which went just too far for one of England's great golf courses. After a drizzly day, the sun burst through in the evening, and the course filled with golfers. This young couple stood out, but the golf club manager preferred not to use the photo. "I'm not sure we can use the one with the short shorts" he said, mindful of the club's image. For me, you couldn't ask for a better image for the sport, but I also understand where he was coming from."
That Girl Golfs
A girl attacks the pin on a society day. "Only one in seven golfers in the UK are female. And of those, only a fraction are girl golfers under 25. Photos like this serve to remind the unconvinced that golf isn't just for old men."
No Dress Code
The fun Par Three Course at The Bristol GC (a Crown Golf club) has no dress code ... "She was the Pro's girlfriend, and they were playing nine on the short course at the end of a hot summer's day. I felt slightly creepy, but they were up for a laugh and let me take a few pictures for a couple of minutes. Most people on a golf course are pretty nice to photographers, if you approach them in the right way".
A fourball poses quietly for the camera at Ramsdale Park GC near Nottingham, a BGL Golf club. "The ringleader here was the chap in the bright green shirt, on the left. I believe nipple-tweaking was involved."
Lining It Up
A golfer contemplates a long putt at Surrey Downs GC. "This photo breaks some conventional 'golf photography' rules, which is why I like it. It's on a slant, he's not yet reached his putting stance, and to cap it all, his shirt's hanging out. But it was a sweltering day, at a lovely golf club with stunning views."
Girls Of Summer
Three golfers on the short course at The Bristol GC. "They were having a knock on The Bristol's short course, and clearly having a laugh. Just playing for the hell of it. Their good mood shines through in this photo, which has been used a few times to promote ladies' golf".
BEHIND THE FENCE.
The view from a cherry-picker at the far end of Baku's Dreamland Golf Club. "I spent a few hours back up on the cherry-picker at Dreamland in September 2016. This is a great-looking corner of the golf course. It looks great while you're playing it, but even better from up in the air. To see this view however, you have to drive a big lorry outside the golf course, and park it behind the fence right in front of some houses."
ONE TWO THREE SWING!
Synchronised swinging at Kirtlington GC in Oxfordshire. "One of the tricks of the trade ... shout one-two-three-swing and start clicking. You'll eventually get a good one ..."
Some way from the green, we find a bunker and an immaculately-striped fairway. "I take far less golf course photos from fairways and tees - you usually get the best views around the green. But something about this view pleases me .. there's a scale about the way the fairway sweeps towards the hole. Plus it's another example of Wildernesse presenting the golf course beautifully, for its photo shoot."
Riding the roller at Harrogate Golf Club. "Watching a greenkeeper ride a turf iron is strangely hypnotic. They whizz sideways, back and forth, literally ironing the putting surface. After he's gone, the green is as smooth as a baby's bottom."
The entrance to Harrogate GC's indoor swing studio. "Taking photos inside a dark swing studio is quite difficult. If you're not carrying a variety of lighting equipment, it's hard to get both the golfer, and the screen, lit properly. But taking a decent photo of a door .. now, that's a doddle. I slightly stylised this one as regards colour, in Lightroom afterwards, and it's a good establishing shot for their website.
PICTURESQUE TEWKESBURY PARK
The Tewkesbury Park hotel, overlooking a green. "Possibly my favourite shot from Twekesbury Park. It's a perfect setting .. the ochre of the foreground rough, the bright green of the fairway and green, lit by a shaft of sunlight, the welcoming white walls of the hotel, and the blue sky above. Very happy with both the colours and the composition on this one. My room was the window on the top floor, with a spectacular view of the golf course and the Cotswolds beyond."
A colourful five-ball on Hoebridge's adventure golf course. "If you have to tell a boy to hop on a barrel, it's not going to look natural. If he hops on out of sheer exuberance, as this lad did, you're going to get a good picture."
ROEHAMPTON 18TH AT DAWN
The back of the 18th at Roehampton Club, in west London, just after dawn. "The area behind the green at Roehampton Club is presented attractively - great thought has been put into a part of the hole which is usually quite bland. It's a gift for the photographer. The 18th green is overlooked by a large raised patio where golfers gather after their rounds. The bit at the back is a great test of your chipping powers."
SHE LEATHERED IT
About to muller the golf ball towards the green, at Wildernesse in Kent. "This lady gave it the old Tiger Woods stinger, just after I took this photo. Smashed it low and straight, right at the pin. Lot of power in those legs. Might have to call her on the non-knee-length socks, though. One for the committee."
TEMPTED BY TEST VALLEY
Calm descends on Test Valley GC one evening, near Basingstoke in Hampshire, England. "Like most courses, Test Valley has a few beauties which stand out as signature holes. I kept coming back to this one - I knew that the setting sun would come in from the left, and illuminate the green. What I couldn't guarantee was how nice the light would be, but it turned out to be stunning. I think this image really tempts you to play the hole."
Bossing that outfit, at Tewkesbury Park. "This guy was a treat to photograph. Always smiling, looked great, and let me follow him round for a couple of holes. I picked this out because of the light. It looks studio-lit, but that's all natural light. Great colour-coordination too. He features elsewhere in this portfolio leading his mates in a Usain Bolt impression. Only one problem with this photo - the trolley is too close to the edge of the frame - but please try to ignore that ... "
A golfer powers a mid-iron out of a Chichester GC fairway bunker. "All you're thinking, when taking a photo like this, is 'please don't shank it'. I was far away from him, on maximum zoom, just in case. Good sand dispersion on this one. As always, I have no idea where the ball went. Decent player, though, and it looks like he hit a good one."
A golfer hits balls while listening to musis at Kirtlington GC in Oxfordshire. "Actually, I say listening to music, but it could have been anything. I didn't ask. Was it The Archers podcast? Bombay Bicycle Club? Holst The Planets? Bill Hicks Live? Who knows. But he was belting it down the range like a pro - which he actually was. Or at least the assistant pro. Love the reflection in his sunglasses, here."
The adventure golf course at Hoebridge Golf Centre. "I had some nice early-morning light when I photographed the Hoebridge adventure golf course. The only thing you can do is to apply the same principles as when photographing a full-size course. Set up the ladder, find the light, find the angle, check the background, and fire away."
A golfer hits balls on a warm evening at Kirtlington GC in Oxfordshire. "I love to hit balls, and this is my ideal scenario .. this chap was working his way through a bucket of balls on the grass tee, on a beautiful, warm evening, not a breath of air. Doesn't get much better. If he was aware of me in the distance behind him, doing my paparazzi thing, he didn't show it, and remained in his own moment. His rhythm was unbroken."
Three friends tackle the short course at Kirtlington GC. "These lads had a lot of banter going on, but I didn't understand a word - they were taking an Eastern European language. They were very probably taking the mickey out of me, which made it all the more enjoyable for them. Comes with the territory ... "
Approaching the 18th at Kirtlington Golf Club. "One final tough approach to the green, and then it's time for a cold one. Behind this green is an absolutely colossal bunker, which is unfortunately quote hard to photograph unless you have a cherry-picker (which I didn't have that day). It's like trying to photograph the curvature of the earth. Kirtlington's such a lovely place - friendly, unpretentious, a genuine home for golfers in Oxfordshire."
Early in the morning on the 18th at Abbey Hill GC near Milton Keynes, England, a BGL Golf club. "Abbey Hill was an intense two-day shoot - including photos of FootGolf, a big party, coaching sessions for all ages, a business meeting, and naturally the golf course too. And one of my lenses was on its last legs. But, in the middle of it all, I found this beautiful scene early on the first morning. Once again, dawn light on a stand of trees makes a picture. In fact, two stands of trees."
I CAN WEAR THIS
Bright blue and khaki. Looked all right at home. She said they didn't match but sod it I'm here now. Wish I was playing better though. Maybe not a lucky outfit. Dark blue trousers next time...
The final green at lovely Berkhamsted GC, a classic English golf course in Hertfordshire. "Late evening at gorgeous Berkhamsted, and a dazzling sunset flatters to deceive. I didn't get long there, before the really good light went, but this photo shows the beautiful colour of the greens they have - fine work by the course manager and his team. IN the background is Berkhamsted's comfortable, unpretentious clubhouse."
A shaft of light from above on the New Course at Burhill GC. "Mother Nature makes it easy for you, sometimes."
A golfer trusts her putter instead of chipping to the pin. " l like shots with a slightly surreal quality of light, like this one. The background is just blurred enough to make the girl stand out."
Jason Fallon, a PGA teaching professional at Thornbury Golf Centre near Bristol (a BGL Golf club), poses manfully for his staff photo. "How many of us can honestly say they enjoy having their photo taken? But Jason did a good job. This fits the bill as a staff photo, I think."
Sunset At Chichester
Fading sunlight brings out the colours at Chichester GC in England's West Sussex. "Yellow flags stand out beautifully against a dark background. This was one of the last shots of the day and I was ready to pack my gear into the car and head for the hotel. We had a dreamy sunset that evening - Chichester was a complex, full shoot, and they made me feel very welcome. Talking of my car, it's in the background of this photo. It's the big dark lump at the right hand side of the car park. Great for yomping around golf courses, and extremely bad on fuel economy."
TWENTY POINTS THIS NINE
Golfers set out on the back nine, both having kept well away from the water this time. "Photos like this can be used for more or less anything at a golf club - just two guys having a quiet game, trying to keep a score going."
The clubhouse awaits at the end of a round of golf, at Merrist Wood GC near Guildford in Surrey, England. "Mother Nature gave me a few challenges on this shoot - the light was a little dull. It was a wet morning to be out taking photographs, but Merrist Wood has some majesty to it and I like the widescreen feel to this view. Another photo which shows the value of clean, white flags when you get the golf course photographer round to take a few pictures."
Golf's Got Her - For Now
A young golfer plays her approach shot on the short course at Branston G&CC in England's midlands, "For now, golf can count this young woman as one of its converts. She had a lovely swing, and her Dad who was playing with her was rightly proud. But who knows how long the sport will remain attractive to her? Not only do we need to get more young people into the game - but we have to keep them too."
Golf Green at Dawn
Early morning, Northwick Park, PlayGolf London. "This is the single most-reproduced photograph I have ever taken - and it's the oldest in this portfolio. It was a wintry April morning, and there was no chance of sunlight. But briefly, I saw a tiny gap in the clouds appear, and could tell that the sun was going to poke through. I stood on my tiptoes, held my arms aloft, pointed the camera down, and fired off half a dozen shots in the 20 seconds of sunlight. Then the sun disappeared for the rest of the day. I got very lucky! Note the greenkeeper and the two flags - this was a PowerPlay Golf event. I wrote the rules of the game and am proud to say that I co-invented it with Peter McEvoy OBE".
A long lens picks out a distant corner of the golf course. "I'm always scanning distant views, as I zip around a golf course on the buggy, looking for a chance to change lenses, get the zoom out, and take a landscape shot in an unconventional way. This is just such an example. Taken from far across another fairway, and using a foreground tree to frame the shot, it's all about depth of field and careful control of exposure. I suppose this is an example of how it's good to get a professional photographer in - you can't really take this photo on a smart phone."
THE LAY DOWN
Three golfers gamely hit the floor, before they tee off on their golf day. "I find that if you ask golfers to lie down, they always smile. Strange, that. Of course, it means that I have to hit the deck too, which I often do. And then, let's see those golf balls just to prove that we're not all here playing some other sport."
Paying tribute to Harry Vardon at Harrogate GC. "Yes it's bronze of the Vardon Grip, and don't these lads know it. If you turn up with an interlocking grip at Harrogate GC - or heaven forbid, a Dai Rees-style baseball grip, you are quickly sent back to the car park to reconsider."
An autumnal scene on the golf course at Roehampton Club. "I'd like to do more golf photography in the autumn, for the obvious reason. You get less light to shoot with, but you get compensated by the added beauty of the rust-coloured leaves."
She finally makes the putt. "This one took a while .. despite my gentle nature, I think she was quite naturally nervous at being asked to hole a putt, for the photograph. So when she finally did - after quite a few tries - their joy was genuine. I said to them .. don't hold back guys. Let's see some air. So they did."
HE WANDERED INTO THE PICTURE
A gentleman joins a young couple in the photograph. "I had been photographing this young couple as they played golf one evening. Then they were joined by an older gentleman, and I wasn't quite sure what the dynamic was there. A father? Grandfather? A complete stranger? Either way, he stayed and smiled for a photo, then the youngsters skipped off to complete their round. It seemed like he appeared out of nowhere. Perhaps he lived in the big house behind the hedge - it was an absolute beauty, and bang on the golf course too."
A golfer's bright red polo shirt is lit by the evening sun. "Taken with a long lens, so as not to disturb his tee shot. I love the brightness and vibrancy of his shirt against the trees in the background."
THE OLD ONE TWO
Two holes meet: an intersection at Hoebridge GC. "Some golf courses have an obvious sweet spot, visually. This is Hoebridge's sweet spot. Unless you hit a very bad slice, you won't see this view as a golfer. But as a photographer, you look for high ground to take a picture from, and a background which complements a nice foreground. This corner of the golf course has everything."
Two young golfers get their game face on at Roehampton Club. "Roehampton wanted a brochure shoot, so there's a 'lifestyle' feel to this photograph which is intentional. These two friends were both very low handicappers, practising before they went out for an evening nine holes. They turned out to be willing models, and I only bothered them for three or four minutes."
DOFFING THE CAP
Four golfers being very gentlemanly. "The four hats were real - but the pose was a special request by yours truly. They were game for a laugh, as most golfers are when asked to do something other than smile straight at the camera."
BOSS OF THE MOSS
Working on her long putting. "You really can't hang around for long, when you're this close to a golfer. Like a wild animal, they can turn on you and bite at any moment. This lady was good enough to let me fire off a few quick photos, then I quietly stepped away before I got my head metaphorically bitten off."
Gesturing on a golf day. "These chaps were Russian, and that's their company - Ohero. Note the guy on the left, giving it the Metallica horns. Not what you normally see on a golf course. The dapper man on the right does the more traditional thumbs-up. Beyond, the lake into which one of their golf balls went, shortly afterwards. I won't say whose."
Looking across the 1st green at Wildernesse, towards the clubhouse. "This hole is handsome from more or less every angle. I often try to get at least one other green in the background, which is a good test of your depth of field skills. Great light here .. not too bright, which makes for a good sky."
ON HIS TOES
A golfer prepares to take on the short course at Kirtlington Golf Club. "Quite often I photograph my victims on their practice swing, as in this case. The trick is to make it look like an actual shot. But as everybody knows, if you press the shutter at this point in an actual swing, you'll make yourself very unpopular indeed."
A young golfer executes a perfect bunker shot at Harrogate GC in north Yorkshire. "I am weirdly obsessed by capturing the perfect 'splash' out of sand. This lad was a good golfer, and the position of the ball is pretty perfect. You can artificially move a ball in post-production of course, but I didn't need to this time. He ended up about eight feet past the pin."
Darkness and light on the golf course. "I wasn't sure if I should put this in the portfolio - it's much more contrasty than my usual photos. Very dark silhouetted trees, and the sharp light of a low sun, usually aren't my favourite combination. But the vaguely purple sky and the general setting make this work quite well, despite the less than idea light."
Posing in front of Tewkesbury Abbey, four friends give it their best smiles for the camera. "It's a lottery, photographing people on the golf course. Many are simply too self-conscious, or understandably grumpy (golf is infernally difficult, after all). Once in a while, you get lucky, and find four beaming lads who are happy to pose for a photo. Here's an example of that, at Tewkesbury Park."
Dramatic bunkers under a dramatic sky. "The wide-angle lens again. The eye sees at around 35mm, but sometimes you want to open it up a little wider. This was at 15 degrees, which helped me capture the yawning chasm of the bunker which guards this par three."
FATHER AND SON
Dad, comfortably outgrown by his Son, at the end of a round of golf at Thornbury GC. "These two just looked terrifically comfortable and happy to be playing golf that night. It was the epitome of a friendly knock, and I found out later that they were father and son."
A shy and retiring golfer celebrates life at Milford GC, a Crown Golf club in Surrey. "A cold day in May, and not much for the photographer. Then along comes this Jack the Lad. Clearly glad that he's on the golf course, while 9 million other people near London are in the office ... ".
A golfer prepares to hit his tee shot. "I'm always very, very careful when photographing golfers, especially when they're playing in a competition, like this chap is. This moment - the waggle before settling into the final address position - is about the last moment you can click the shutter, without risking a punch in the nose. I take these last-minute photos on a long zoom, and set the camera to Quiet mode to lessen the distraction. It also helps if you have already chatted to your subject and formed a friendly bond, which I had done in this case."
I'M CALLING IT
A golfer anticipates a long putt is about to drop. "This was your classic long bom .. a good 40-footer, if not more. He was calling it long before it dropped into the hole - which it did. Get in there, my son..."
Enjoying her golf, no question about it. "I'll be honest, this lady appeared to be slightly mad. People were quite nervous around her. She didn't speak English, so I never had any idea what she was saying. This was the expression on her face for most of her shots at the range that day, no matter where the ball went. Good hair!"
The fairway cascades down to the 7th green, at Harrogate Golf Club. "Sometimes a hole seems relatively unremarkable, yet it still takes a great photograph. That's the case here I think. No lakes, no colossal pine trees, no outlandish bunkers in view. Just a big, handsome hole, expertly presented by the greens staff, taken from an angle which shows it off at its best. I always like this rear three-quarter view - I think it tells you lots that you need to know about a hole ... there's spaciousness to it, and if you get it right (like here) everything is nice and crisp into the far distance. And also, bravo Harrogate - thanks for putting out nice bright yellow flags, too."
PLEASE BE QUICK
Golfers smile politely for the photographer, at Roehampton Club. "Here I go again, disturbing the peace on the golf course. These ladies had all the kit, and were kind enough to smile sweetly for the camera - but were quite relieved when I moved on."
Two lads with a lot of history, giving it everything for the cameraman. "These guys were from my side of life - the media - so they were used to being around cameras. The one sitting down had a definite old-school, stylish seventies thing going on, whereas his big mate standing up was the comedian. Note the 'natural' pose as he 'tells a story' - one which his mate is clearly ignoring, in favour of a nice smile for the camera. Lovely lads both of them."
A spacious corner at Wildernesse. "The golf course is generally tree-lined, but it opens right out around the 6th green, giving you a nice feeling of scale. The dark/light mowing lines really sell this picture - as a photographer you're looking for contrasts which you can use to create an interesting image. And often I would wait until the fairway is clear, but I felt that the knot of golfers in the distance added something to the picture. I'm not averse to cropping people out, though, if it makes the photograph better. As they are essentially moveable objects, I think that's a fair tactic."
Attacking the green on a rainy day. "This girl was a good golfer, and very easy on the eye. She and her boyfriend were definitely not fair weather golfers. Not often I take photos on the golf course in the rain, but we got some good ones out there that afternoon."
MOOR ALLERTON DAWN
Overlooking the putting green one dawn at Moor Allerton GC. "Clearly I am shooting straight into the rising sun here, and you lose the centre of the image to over-exposure. But this is a great spot from which to take a photo - up some steps onto a balcony outside the big clubhouse windows. It's all laid out magnificently below you. I met my sporting heroes, Leeds United's Peter Lormier and Eddie Gray, on this very putting green."
FROM THE BEDROOM
Looking across the golf course at Tewkesbury Park, with Cheltenham and The Cotswolds beyond. "I actually took this from my bedroom window, early one morning. The rooms in the hotel at Tewkesbury Park are absolutely gorgeous, and they'd given me a belter of a view, I suspect just so I could get this shot. If only all photographs could be taken from the warmth and comfort of your bedroom. More often than not, I'm freezing my bits off, desperate for a hot coffee and huddling in a warm coat, waiting for the sun to come out."
Two golfers not acting silly at all. "These ladies were playing in a late evening fourball at Dreamland Golf Club in Baku, Azerbaijan. This was their 18th tee - clearly they still had energy to burn."
A group of young golfers at the IMG Academy, at Dreamland GC, Baku, Azerbaijan. "So far IMG have been kind enough to fly me out to photograph Dreamland not once, but twice. Both times it was a memorable shoot. In autumn 2016, out four-day photoshoot ran like clockwork: a packed schedule, but a constant pleasure. Great weather, warm people, and a new facility which is building towards being truly world-class."
The 27th and final hole at Moor Allerton GC. More trickery here .. there's a lake short of the green on this hole, but it was being renovated when I was there, so it really wasn't suitable for photography. I found this view which, taken with a zoom lens, foreshortened the shot nicely. This is a good 200 yds from the green, and not a shot most people would want to take on. Some lovely rich, lush colours on this photo I think."
BIT SLOW TODAY
A fourball finds it slow going on an adventure golf course - for one of them, it was all too much. "This lad was a sprightly 55 year old when he started. After an hour, waiting behind an eight-ball of doddery grandmas, he'd lost a severe amount of weight and I was quite worried about him. His mates didn't seem too concerned, though."
THE WHITE FLAG
Strong colours and a bright white flag show off a well-mown green. "I always ask clubs to invest in new, white flags for their photoshoot. Take a look at this photo and see why. It leaps out at you. Red flags or blue flags, on the other hand, give me the chills ... you have to work so much harder to make them stand out."
BIG OLD TREE
An old, old tree frames a distant green at Tewkesbury Park. "This photo is a trick shot, in that the tree actually plays no part in the hole your eye is being drawn to. In the distance is the 17th green - but this tree stands close to the 18th tee. However, this is one of the loveliest views on the golf course, and where does it say that I have to photograph the hole as it plays? Sometimes you have to drive the wrong way down a fairway, to find the best picture."
THE RIGHT SPOT
A tough par four at Mill Green GC in Hertfordshire, a Crown Golf club. "Sometimes you need to take a big step back to find the right spot to photograph a golf hole. At Mill Green they had let the rough grow right up, for the photoshoot, and on this occasion I felt I needed plenty of it to make the perfect photo. I think the grass in the foreground adds so much to what was already a dramatic scene. Not a hole for the faint-hearted golfer."
A distinctively-dressed golfer follows his ball flight on a Par Three at Ramsdale Park GC near Nottingham. "Either this was a brand-new cap, or he kept it in immaculate condition. He was well-dressed, new-looking blue grips on his clubs too."
Golfers pause for the camera at The Shire London GC. "I usually wait until golfers have finished putting out, before I ask if they mind having their photo taken. Occasionally, you get rewarded by two dazzling and genuine smiles, as in this case. A couple of nice guys."
THE 18TH ON THE NEW - AERIAL
The closing par three on Burhill's New Course, taken from high above. "In these Health & Safety-obsessed days, you can't often get onto the clubhouse roof. But Burhill has a set of offices right at the top of the building, and I asked for special permission to climb out and get this shot, which I think makes for a dramatic photograph."
THE 18TH ON THE NEW - FROM THE TEE
The closing par three on Burhill's New Course, taken from behind the tee. "And here, you can see the roof where I was standing when I took the photo on the previous page. This pair pf photos really shows how getting up high can transform a shot. But this hole looks great from either angle."
Sunlight breaks through an angry sky at Thornbury GC, near Bristol, UK. "An early-season photoshoot date made the Thornbury shoot a challenge - but the golf course has several stand-out holes to photograph, This is actually the final hole on the club's short course. The wall and the road make for a nice widescreen composition."
HANDS AND ARMS
A golfer punches the ball towards the green from a tricky lie at Berkhamsted GC. "This is a definite 'hands and arms' shot ... get too much lower body into this one and you'll topple over. The mounds are a feature of Berkhamsted - they are everywhere - and this lady golfer is doing a great job of controlling her swing. As usual, I have no idea where the ball went - too busy looking through the camera lens."
BEARD ON A BUGGY
Golfers smile for the camera, before teeing off at Ramsdale Park GC on a beautiful evening for golf. "YOu rarely need to book models for a golf club photoshoot. The public almost always provides enough personality and smiling faces - as in this case."
The opening green on Burhill GC's Old Course. "This was the very first shot of a comprehensive 48-hour photoshoot at Burhill, and one of my favourites out of the thousands I took there. I like the composition - one green in the foreground, showing you what it's got, and one in the background, promising more treats to come."
Immaculate contour-mowing on the fairway at Birchwood Park GC, near Dartford in Kent. "Preparation like this makes my job so much easier - really outstanding work here by the greens team at Birchwood Park."
Visitor From The Sky
"I was finishing for the evening - the sun had gone - when I saw the big Virgin balloon coming in to land nearby. I jumped in the golf buggy, hit the throttle, and tore across the course to find that, luckily, it was settling right behind one of the most photogenic parts of Milford GC. I managed to get a few shots before it disappeared behind the trees. This photo is an example of how you should never, ever give up on a day while there's any light left in the sky". Andy Hiseman, photographer.
WIDE OPEN SPACES
A breathtaking view of Ramsdale Park GC. "Ramsdale's back nine is in total contrast from its front nine. You climb a long hill to the tenth tee, and embark on a stunning succession of holes which perch on top of a hill, with views for miles around. It's irresistible for a photographer."
Beauty abounds at Merrist Wood GC in Surrey, a Crown Golf club near London. "This is a lovely winding little stream on the golf course at Merrist Wood. A cute corner on a big, challenging golf course".
Skills on the FootGolf course at Abbey Hill GC. "FootGolf is spreading fat at UK golf clubs. It's a money-spinner for some, but the perceived challenge is how to convert these new customers into bona-fide golfers. I'm not sure we need to. Just let them have fun and they'll find their way back to the golf club naturally."
Not Portugal ... it's just off the A1 near Graveley in Herts. A Chesfield Downs G&CC par three.
Crisis What Crisis?
Who cares how we're playing - it's just a friendly game. At Milford GC, near London. "You can tell that these gentlemen were enjoying the friendliest of friendly games. Three simply fantastic smiles".
Two golfers pose beautifully for the camera at Paultons GC in Hampshire, a Crown Golf club. "This almost looks like one of those studio shots where people pose in front of a canvas. But it's a real scene - just perfectly lit by the setting sun. People can sometimes look awkward when a photographer pops up and asks to take their picture, but these two lady golfers gave me a perfect pair of smiles."
Pyrford GC (a Crown Golf club) flexes its muscles frequently, with an abundance of water holes. Here., the 9th green lies protected by one of the club's many lakes. "There's a photograph everywhere you look at Pyrford - it is one of the most photogenic golf courses I know. This is just one of dozens of great views there".
HotShot and Eddie
Hotshot Peter Lorimer (L) and Eddie Gray (R), Leeds United legends both, at Moor Allerton GC Spring 2014 during the LUFC Golf Day. "As a die-hard Leeds United fan, it was a true pleasure to find Hotshot and Eddie Gray on the putting green - and even more, to find them to be such nice fellas. Look at those faces...".
A gritty competitor at The Hertfordshire G&CC, one of the Crown Golf group of clubs. "It's fair to say this fella was focused on winning his game".
MORE THAN GOLF
A Batchworth Park golfer holds course post-golf one summer evening. "Golf is about so much more than hitting a ball."
LIGHT AND SHADE
Approaching the green at Addington Court GC, south of London.
I BOUGHT IT IN FLORIDA
Bought in Florida, brought back to England, and worn whenever it's dry. A golfer rocks his hat.
Another gorgeous hole at Milford GC in Surrey, near London.
NO COMPLAINTS ABOUT KNEES
Lady golfers start their round at Berkhamsted. "Often, golfers complain about their knees when I ask them to kneel for a photo. These three didn't complain for a moment - they were happy to pose. Shortly afterwards the heavens opened, so I'm not sure their smiles lasted for long."
A spectacular par three hole at Chichester GC in West Sussex.
NO BETTER PLACE
A sunny day on the golf course, shorts on ... a few hours away from the stresses of life. "For me this photo encapsulates what golf represents for many people: an antidote to the rest of your life. Sometimes, when it's warm, you're with your friends, and you're playing on a great golf course (in this case, the Old at Burhill), there really is no better place to be."
The Big Picture
A wide view of Dreamland GC, in Baku, Azerbaijan. "People are talking about the big picture in Baku ... the new Dubai, some say. It's certainly a beautiful city, on a striking bay in the Caspian Sea, and Dreamland is its new, first-class golf club and residential community. I didn't get the best weather when I was there, but I hope to go back one day soon to really do the place justice."
The Right Angle
At Sherfield Oaks GC in Hampshire, a Crown Golf club. "I love the way that man and nature have worked together to produce straight lines at right angles to each other in this photo. This isn't a scene which you'd necessarily spot when you're playing a round of golf - there are two different holes featured in this photo. It's a made-up view, if you like, although there is no computer trickery. But it's one of my personal favourites. It's my Wes Anderson tribute photo (watch one of his movies and see how he composes his shots)".
CLOSE, BUT NO CIGAR
Young golfers watch a putt slide by at Birchwood Park GC, a BGL Golf club. "A cold, drizzly day in Kent, but these junior golfers still had a ball that morning."
A superb golf swing from one of the junior golfers at Ramsdale Park GC. "The local school had organised this group golf day during the summer holidays. I think the young man teeing off has an air of Seve about him. He looked to be the best player in the group, so they made him tee off first."
THE MAGIC MINUTE
Moments after sunrise at Branston G&CC, near Burton upon Trent in the Midlands. "Quite a flat hole, but the viaduct made it the #1 place to stand as the sun came over the horizon."
On the putting green at The Shire London. "This is a very brochure-friendly photo I think. The light is nice, and he is dressed well. There's Seve's signature on the putting green flag if you look close enough. A classy venue, and this photo sells it well I think."
Magnificent trees stand to attention alongside the first tee at Paultons GC in Hampshire, England. "Paultons has some stunning trees - and none better than these, which loom tall over you as you hit your first tee shot. You can't fail to notice them, and I think they make a commanding sight in this photograph. It was important to focus this right - there's nothing better than a crisp stand of trees when you're taking high-resolution golf images. The green in the foreground is the 18th, and I took this as the sun was beginning to get lower in the sky. Those lads on the first were obviously heading out for a very hasty nine holes."
WE HAVE STORIES
Two golfers, entering life's back nine, pose for the camera at Abbey Hill GC. "I just think that these two fellas look splendid. Confident, well-dressed, beaming at the camera before a game of golf. I'm sure they have some significant tales to tell."
A charming spot on the golf course at Branston Golf & Country Club. "This is actually the view from the first tee at Branston. This hole says "look at me". The green is very small, and it's almost a three-quarter scale golf hole in reality. Small, but perfectly-formed."
A beautifully-lit green at Surrey Downs GC.
Hit The Dance Floor
It's hit the green or face a watery grave, at South Winchester GC in Hampshire. "I've got a few different things in mind when taking a golf course photo. For example, does it give the golf club a nice 'widescreen' image? This one ticks that box - the club can crop it top and bottom, because all the interest is in the middle third of the image (looking vertically). This would make a good 'letterbox' style image for use as the background to a web page."
BE ON YOUR GAME
The fearsome opening hole at the Severiano Ballesteros-designed The Shire London golf club. "Most photographs of the first at The Shire are taken from the fairway, looking towards the semi-island green, but I think this is its best angle. If you can get some foreground interest into a photo, you're usually going to take a better picture. This was a very early-morning shot, and and the start of another great shoot at one of my favourite golf clubs."
The immaculate Range at Dreamland GC in Baku, Azerbaijan. "This was taken on the official opening morning. Shortly afterwards, European Tour legend Colin Montgomerie gave a demonstration for the youngsters who are learning their golf there."
TRUST YOUR ABILITY
A low-handicapper has a golf lesson. "Sometimes you just have to trust a golfer's ability, to get the shot. You can ask people to pretend, and not actually hit a ball, but you always get a better expression if they hit the ball for real. I wouldn't have stood here for many golfers, but I had seen him play and he was ripping those wedge shots. I thought the chance of a shank was minimal, but it's not something I would really risk that often. I got away with it."
TENDING THE PIN
A golfer helps a friend with a long putt on Birchwood Park GC. "He spotted me way across the next fairway and gave me a grin. This was taken with a long zoom lens - he did well to see me."
Where It All Starts
The first tee and putting green at Sand Moor GC near Leeds. "Sand Moor is one of the greats among a collection of superb golf courses just north of Leeds. It is a remarkable cluster of golf courses which I think rivals England's north west coast for quality."
A giant bunker dominates the approach to the green. "One third sand, one third grass, one third sky. The flag one third into the picture on the right hand side. The lake dominating the left hand third. Not a bad composition - if you're intending to take landscape photos, the rule of thirds is your friend. I like the flowing line of the bunker edge, matched by the wavy edge of the green. The three bunkers at far left add a bit more interest too. Taken in a pleasant gap in the weather on a damp day at magnificent Merrist Wood GC near London."
WELCOME TO BRANSTON
Luke and Steve, two PGA Professionals at Branston G&CC. "I may just have said something funny - these are great natural smiles. Branston is a terrific place, and a hidden gem of English golf."
Beauty Is Just Around The Corner
A dog-leg par four at Sunbury GC, a Crown Golf club near London. "There's a simplicity about this photo which appeals. The course manager and his team had prepared Sunbury immaculately.".
IS THE BAR OPEN?
Coming down the hill to the final hole at Ramsdale Park. "The fella on the left had a splendid smile as he saw me. His mate looked altogether less fresh and they came back down off the hill which defines Ramsdale's back nine. It wasn't long before they were supping a cooling drink in the clubhouse."
The 8th green at The Shire London at dawn. "One of my most-reproduced photographs. Seve Ballesteros's design at 'The Shire' is a marvellous mix of inland links, parkland, and Tour-style stadium course. It is one of the most entertaining golf courses in Europe, and I have been lucky to represent them for many years. I love photographing it - what photographer wouldn't?"
Dawn Sunshine At Sand Moor
A beautiful scene early one morning at Sand Moor GC near Leeds. "Before a photoshoot I always suggest that golf clubs put white flags on the pins, and this photo shows why. Red or Blue flags, both popular colours, get lost against dark backgrounds, but a white flag not only stands out, but it also catches the sunshine and seems to throw it back out at the photographer - like in this early-morning shot here."
Five lads try golf at the range. "An older member had just shouted at these lads for being too boisterous on the range, but I had been around the area for a good fifteen minutes, and they were really not doing anything other than talking to each other happily. They really weren't being disruptive, and I thought the old guy was in the wrong. Maybe he just didn't like the way they were dressed. Man, this is a driving range - you can wear what you want. A strange incident, and one which shows why golf is still struggling to attract newcomers like these lads.
Waiting His Turn
A golfer sizes up his chances of hitting the fairway, at Chichester GC in West Sussex. "I just love the colours on this one. The light was quite strange that evening, sort of thundery and flat without there actually being a storm".
Moments after dawn at The Hertfordshire G&CC, north of London. "I could have removed the duck on the computer afterwards, but since it was kind enough to pose directly in this beautiful shaft of sunlight, I thought it deserved to stay".
A proud dad and his son pose for the camera at the driving range. "I'm pretty sure Dad was wearing his pyjamas here, but it's the driving range so who cares? Great family golf photo though."
TOLD YOU I WAS GOOD
The pro's advice seems to have worked. "This lady was having a golf lesson with her husband. Here. they had moved onto the putting green, and the pro had given her a few setup tips. She immediately nailed a snaky ten-footer, to everyone's delight."
At least that's over. Now take me to the bar. "These lads had obviously not played well, but who cares? The relief of returning to the clubhouse after playing like a drain - we all know that feeling."
A sneaky hazard winds its way around the 18th green at Batchworth Park Golf Club, a Crown Golf club. "It's not one of those ditches where you lose your ball - it is kept immaculately and it is fairly shallow - but it's still a bit of treachery to catch you out on the final hole."
Smashing a drive down the fairway at Burhill's Old Course. "He leathered this one straight down the middle, the old country mile. Obviously quite a player."
Ready for the drizzle. "A wet society golf day in Kent, but still they turn up in their dozens. Golfers take a lot of stopping."
The 9th at The Hertfordshire G&CC, with the imposing clubhouse in the distance. "The 9th is a big bold hole with some great rough and a few big, handsome trees to avoid from the tee."
SHORT BUT SERIOUS
Golfers on the Short Course at Ramsdale Park GC near Nottingham. "The club wanted photos of avid golfers on its short course, which is actually a collection of some genuinely great par threes. Some short courses are little more than pitch and putt, but Ramsdale's is wonderful, and a real feature of the club."
A well-protected green at Batchworth Park GC in Hertfordshire. "I loved photographing Batchworth Park - so many interesting shapes around the greens".
Belting his first tee shot at The Shropshire GC, a BGL Golf club. "This chap didn't hold back on his first tee shot. I was hiding behind a golf cart tucked away below the tee, with a long lens, and had less than a second to duck if he got it wrong. I lived to fight another day.
The 2nd hole at Pine Ridge GC in Surrey, a Crown Golf club. "I always think this photo looks like a PGA Tour hole - the staff had presented the golf course immaculately for the photoshoot".
A fresh new look for the pro shop. "It's hard to win awards for artistic merit when you're photographing a pro shop, especially if they want wide shots to show a refurbishment. I tend to put up the ladder in the four corners, and snap away. Good to get something prominent in the foreground though. Here, I moved the yellow/green half-mannequin into position so that the photo had a point of focus. It still shows the refurb too, I think."
A dappled sky at Wortley GC, Sheffield, in northern England. "Sometimes a photo is all about the sky - I call it 'going Hollywood'. I have a wide-angle lens I use especially for these moments, where I think a great sky will make a picture".
Close-up photography of golf apparel. "It's all about the light. Find a corner of the pro shop where you can get something lit properly, and get your focusing right. Taking close-up golf apparel photos is a weird obsession of mine, but I have it under control."
A golfer practising hard at Ramsdale Park GC. "This photogenic chap was called Leon, and he had a great look. Yes, very Tiger Woods-like. Afterwards he asked me for some pictures, so I sent him half a dozen of the best by way of thanks. He was a good sport and very much a gentleman golfer."
Two Flags Reflection
Two PowerPlay Golf flags on a green reflected in a beautiful setting at the TwentyTen course, Celtic Manor Resort, Wales. Client: private. "Taken to promote PowerPlay Golf: Ignition at Celtic Manor in May 2011. Glorious morning, and look at those reflections. Two flags on the green ... "
That's my boy. Father and Son on The Shropshire's putting green on a hot day. "Another father-son moment, this time on the putting green. The young lad was hyper-aware of the photographer, but managed to drain an eight-footer after a few attempts. This was a smile of relief. His Dad, bless him, had a big smile on his face throughout."
The immortal Severiano Ballesteros, commemorated in a statue at The Shire London, site of the only golf course which he designed in the UK. "Tony, The Shire's owner, had this commissioned to stand in the driveway as you enter the golf club. It is a metallic sculpture, and the creases in his jumper and trousers are actually gaps in the metal. It is lit at night, and it's terrific in every way. Seve is no longer with us, but so much of his personality survives at The Shire, a place which he visited often, and where he poured so much passion into his design there."
TURNING A CORNER
The Berkhamsted golf course makes an acute turn after the second green. "Berkhamsted is one of England's real beauties - traditional in feel, yet quite unusual in its distinctive mounding around almost all fairways and greens. Gives you plenty to photograph."
Behind the tee at Pine Ridge GC in Surrey, England. "If you choose to photograph pine trees on a golf course, your golfers become tiny as a result, This is a good example, but I love the cathedral-like setting here. One of my favourites from the Pine Ridge shoot".
WHITE SAND AT THE SHROPSHIRE
A sculpted bunker and rich-coloured grass at The Shropshire GC. "This was taken shortly after sunrise. Racing about as usual, on the golf cart, looking for the best light. Stunning colours on this photo - when the sun hits well-prepared grass just right, you get an amazing colour green, just like this. My favourite light for golf course photography."
THE SURREY TRIBE
A tribe of golfers get in some last-minute putting practice prior to their round at Burhill Golf Club in Surrey, near London. "This is a healthy sight for any golf club operator - a big gathering of golfers for a club competition. I hung out of the balcony at the front of Burhill's exceptionally nice clubhouse, to take this one."
Mums and Dads get into the picture at Birchwood Park GC, near Dartford in Kent. "The two PGA pros at the heart of this photo were among the best I have ever seen at handling a large Saturday-morning group of kids. The atmosphere was inspiring, and the parents obviously felt that their children were in safe hands for a couple of hours. This is a very good part of golf."
Hitting his new driver on the range. "People say that golf is for tired old men wearing ancient jumpers. This chap wasn't like that. Such a great face to photograph."
Waiting for their turn on the first tee. "This was a big golf day, with over eighty golfers. I gave these guys something to do while they waited for the groups ahead to get started."
A challenging par four on Burhill's Old Course. "Like cars, a lot of golf holes look best from the three-quarter view. Get round the back, take a few steps to the side, and put the flag about a third of the way in from the edge of the frame. This photo tells the whole story of the hole."
A CORNER OF ENGLAND
A golfing view across the Shropshire countryside. "The manager at The Shropshire GC was keen to get some photos which showed the club's location relative to a prominent local landmark - namely the monument on the hill in the distance."
WORKING ON HIS GAME
Summer evening practice on the range at Redbourn Golf Club, a BGL Golf club. "A healthy sight for the golf club - a busy range as the lights kick in."
HELP YOU FIX THAT
The Birchwood Park PGA pro uses his iPad to show a golfer where he needs to tweak his swing. "The advent of tablets with their video cameras has revolutionised how PGA pros give lessons. By the way, what's that stuck onto the side of that golfer's head? I presume it's a hearing aid, but what is it, nailed on? I can't see a strap, and it doesn't seem to be connected to his ear or his glasses...."
A Picturesque Challenge
A beautiful par three, at South Winchester GC in Hampshire. "I kept coming back to this hole - I just like the way it lies, and I could tell that it would look great if the sun hit it right. This was my favourite out of several shots of that hole which I took at various points during the day".
KNEEL BEFORE GEOFF
Trick shot maestro Geoff Swain wows the crowds at Dreamland Golf Club's opening event in Baku, Azerbaijan. "I had the flight back to the UK with Geoff, and he was excellent company. A former police officer and excellent golfer, he changed his life to create one of the sport's most amazing trick shot shows, which he now takes around the world."
Your target awaits, at Surrey Downs GC. "Another very simple photograph, but there's that green baize quality again on the green. I like the gentle carpet of sunlight which flows across this photo. It produced exactly the colour of green which I love the most - a true bright green. This is the colour I most like to see when I download my photographs after a shoot".
Working on her game. "I'd finished my session at the driving range, but as I was leaving I saw this lady golfer silhouetted through the door. The light on the muscles of her arms made for a good photo."
Chichester Putting Green
A peaceful start to the day at Chichester GC in West Sussex. "Another example of how flat light can still work for you. The detail in the brickwork on the clubhouse is terrific, and this is a great establishing shot which shows you how spacious the area is. It's a great place to gather before and after your game of golf".
AIM AT THE CART
A colourful sight on the driving range. "We all do it, aim at the cart, but this far away you have to be really good to hit it."
The PGA pro gives a junior golf lesson at Redbourn GC. "There's a million photos like this out there - the pro adjusting the golfer's grip. What you may not realise is that they are nearly always staged shots. I tend to ask people for two minutes of their time, maximum. I hop around, call out requests for authentic-looking poses, and snap away quickly. Then I let them get on with their golf lesson."
LADY CAPTAIN'S HONOUR
A lady golfer about to leather one one up the 10th fairway at Ramsdale Park GC. "She was the Lady Captain, and persuaded her mates to pose for a series of photos on the golf course. I seem to remember that this one went right down the middle."
YOU NAILED THAT
A golf lesson at The Shropshire GC. "I always ask permission, and try not to longer for more than a few shots. Stick on a wide-angle lens, get down low, and wait for the right moment. The pro's reaction shows that he's got a good ball flight on this one, and he's made a nice balanced finish. It's all working well here!"
HAPPY BIRTHDAY WEST LONDON: 1
Golfers celebrate the first birthday of the 9-hole course at West London Golf Centre. "The 9-holer at WLGC is designed by the team behind The Shire London, and it is a good test of golf with plenty of elevation and a scale which surprises most who play it for the first time. This photo was taken as part of a series to commemorate the venue's first anniversary."
HAPPY BIRTHDAY WEST LONDON: 2
Golfers celebrate the first birthday of the 9-hole course at West London Golf Centre. "These lads came off the 9th green and gave me a couple of great smiles."
One of the south of England's most beautiful and tranquil golf courses, Surrey Downs GC. "A true 'magic hour' photo, taken soon after dawn. These are the colours you witness, if you get onto the golf course early enough. A dawn like this can transform a golf hole into something of great beauty".
TOO MUCH ADVICE
Aim over there, you're good enough. No what you want to do is lay it up. Hang on, I'll get my SkyCaddie and show you mate. "The poor chap in the cap was being given the full benefit of everyone's advice on how to play this tricky semi-blind tee shot. He pushed it right, and just missed the fairway bunker - he didn't take the tiger line which the chap holding his shoulder was suggesting."
A golfer hard at work, grooving his swing on the practice range at Aldwickbury Park GC. "Most driving ranges are quite tough to photograph - they tend to be wide-open flat places with few features. Aldwickbury's has the advantage - to a photographer - of having a nice dark wooded area surrounding it, and I took advantage of that here. Lovely crisp focus on the golfer's hands and the back of his head, and an interesting polo shirt made this a 'keeper'."
After the game. "They had just come off one of the golf courses at Burhill, and looked pleased to be back at the clubhouse. When you point a long lens at them, some people's faces brighten like this. Plenty don't, however ... "
Two annoyingly handsome golf pros on a casual evening at Branston G&CC. "Straight out of the Grattan cataogue. These lads could model knitted tank tops and still look good."
IS THIS ALLOWED?
The lads tweak their caps during a break from their golf lesson. "There's usually no shortage of good snaps to be taken during a Saturday-morning junior group lesson, like this."
Immaculate bunkers lie in wait at The Shropshire GC. "They have three nines at The Shropshire, and rich brown sand traps which are real golf ball-eaters. I was blessed with great weather - in fact it was a real scorcher. This was taken in the morning, before it got too sweltering."
THE TROUBLE WITH THE E.U...
Golfers put the world to rights at Redbourn Golf Club. "I snapped them just as the golfer on the first tee in the background took his swing."
The tidy driving range at Burhill Golf Club. "To photograph this driving range, I set up my ladder at the far end, stood right on the top, and used my widest-angle lens. It's impossible to avoid a bit of distortion at the edges of the frame, but this is the best way to show what the range really looks like. Driving range photos taken at ground level tend to look flat, cluttered and claustrophobic."
A PGA pro gives a chipping lesson to a good golfer. "Scrambling around the greens is essential if you want to syat in Category One. This guy had obviously booked a chipping lesson, that Saturday morning. It was a peaceful scene of two guys really into their golf."
Flushing an iron at the driving range. "When I look at this photo I think ;'enviable hair line' and 'great face'. He was a good golfer, smashing it down the range with the fury of the low-handicapper who knows he's on camera - but gentlemanly and friendly enough to let me get on with my job."
Quite a view. The clubhouse and surrounds at Burhill GC. "If you had to create an English golf club from a blank sheet of paper, the result might look rather like Burhill."
Club testing at the mighty Honma production facility, in northern Japan. "To many westerners, high-priced Honma is a mystery. I was lucky enough to be invited to see how they do it, and it is an eye-opening operation. Those clubs are expensive for a reason - the ball disappears like a bullet."
Will it go in? Youngsters at Abbey Hill GC enjoy their golf. "The tall lad at the back was the hyperactive one. Most of my photos from that morning contain him leaping around in the foreground..."
A golfer cuts the corner at Berkhamsted Golf Club. "Maybe I slightly over-cooked the contrast on this photo, which makes the colours slightly too aggressive. I think it's a classic pose though, whacking the tee shot with the distant flag just visible, blurred in the background."
The last light in the sky illuminates a green at The Shropshire GC. "This was taken moments before the light disappeared altogether - the sun stayed out of the clouds for maybe two minutes more that night. After this shot, it was a case of pack up, find some food, and get back to the hotel for downloads, backups and a few hours' rest - before the early sunrise."
The well-prepared golf course at Birchwood Park GC. "It was grey and drizzly for most of the late-season Birchwood Park photoshoot, but the team had presented the golf course amazingly well, given the time of year."
THE GOOD MORNING
Off out to play? Yes mate. Have a good game, You too - see you in the bar afterwards,
About to enter battle. Still all friends at this stage. "And no doubt friends at the end, too. it was Captain's Day at Burhill GC, and every single fourball looked to be in a great mood. I chose to show this photo because of the guy who wasn't looking at the camera."
A golfer shows off her muscles. "This lady was obviously no stranger to the gym, and didn't look to be a bad golfer either."
Immaculate course preparation at Aldwickbury Park Golf Club.
THE BIG LAUNCH
A young golfer winds up for the big one, at Ramsdale Park GC. "This is a real smash-it tee shot, high up on the back nine at Ramsdale. Open your shoulders, tee it high, and let it fly ... Which is exactly what this lad is doing. He started the round with his mate, who was a bit overweight and obviously didn't fancy the long walk up the hill to the 10th tee. This young lad, in comparison, was a bit of a mountain goat, full of energy."
NO HAPPY ENDING
The tough closing hole at The Shropshire Golf Club.
ILLUMINATED PUTTING GREEN
Putting practice at Abbey Hill GC, near Milton Keynes. "I stood on the function room roof to get this. The light hit the putting green just right."
PURPLE VS. GREEN
Golfers squint on the 18th at Redbourn GC. "This was late-season, and the light was a little harsh. I wonder if these colours were deliberate, or if they just accidentally dressed like two teams.".
DRESSED IN THE DARK
A sharp-dressed golfer gives it the full wind-up on the tee. "That's a bold choice of clothing. Check out that full swing, too."
NOT POSING HONEST
He's taking my photo. Got my good shirt on and the second skin. Been down the gym. Breathe in. Looking good. Work it. Don't look at the camera.
A young golfer follows the ball in flight. "This lad was very photogenic. Here, he's lofted an iron towards the green on a long par three. I think he has a bit of Tom Cruise about him, mixed in with a touch of Elvis."
Sun-Struck Pine Trees
The setting sun illuminates tall trees at Pine Ridge GC in Surrey. "I got a lot of great shots at Pine Ridge, but this is right up there among my favourites. I love the illuminated tall trees to the left of the picture, and the contrail of the plane which is pointing arrow-like at them. Normally I like to photograph greens in sunlight, but occasionally you can get a good photo without direct light".
Dawn breaks over the challenging 10th hole at Thornbury GC, near Bristol. "Taken in May 2015, this shoot gave me about a four out of ten weather-wise, but the dawn was attractive - briefly - before the sky closed in. The club was wonderful, and had organised the photoshoot brilliantly. Nobody can affect the weather though - if only!"
Beautiful summer hues, at South Winchester GC in Hampshire. "This photo has all the colours you want for a 'magic hour' photo .. the orange, the blue and the different shades of green. As with so many of my images, it's a peaceful scene".
GRIPPED BY GOLF
A PGA golf professional from the BGL Golf group teaches a beginner at Abbey Hill GC. "Golf pros are usually fine about being photographed, but beginners less so. Learning golf is a pressured-enough situation without the paparazzi creeping about, so I usually take a few quick photos then leave them to get on with it."
Daybreak at Addington Court
The skies lighten and the sun isn't far behind, at Addington Court GC - a Crown Golf club near London. "England's oldest pay-and-play course early one morning in late springtime. It's still quite dark, as you can tell from the photo, but you don't always need bright sunlight to take a photo. In fact, I like finding scenes which photograph well in other kinds of light, like this one".
Magic at Milford
A magical scene of tranquility at Milford GC's enormous double green - one of the longest in Europe. "It was a frosty morning in mid-May. The composition on this photo is unconventional - everything is off to the right - but I really like it. You can do a putt of almost 200 feet on this green - it's quite amazing".
Beautiful Feldon Valley Morning
Another gorgeous day begins at Feldon Valley GC in Oxfordshire, England. "When it's really early in the morning, you seem to get a stillness in the scene which you don't get so much at dusk. Something about knowing that you're capturing the very first moments of daylight, on that particular day, gives you a feeling of privilege. I think this photo of a lovely hole at Feldon Valley gets that feeling across".
On a warm day at The Bristol GC, three golfers bask in the heat. "It was a scorching hot day - let's say it wasn't a day for knee-length socks if you were wearing shorts. Here's a group of golfers with a good look - I hate dress codes on a golf course, personally, and think photos like this portray a really positive about a sport which frequently gets a kicking in the media for being stuffy".
A spectacular start to the round at mighty Merrist Wood GC, in Surrey. "This particular dawn gave me an angry, rainy sky. Not the best weather for a photoshoot, but this is a great angle and you have to take what you can get when the elements are against you."
The commanding Mansion House forms a spectacular backdrop to the 18th Hole at Heythrop Park Resort, in rural Oxfordshire, England. "A simple shot, but the great late afternoon light makes it, I think".
Girls Are Ready
Three lady golfers looking confident before their round at Milford GC in Surrey. "Milford gave me some of the best 'people' photos I've ever found on a golf course. I think the Members there really love the place".
Adventure Golf course at Northwick Park, London. "This was fun - trying to photograph a mini-golf hole as if it was a full-size Tour golf hole. I don't think it turned out too bad".
The Starting Hut
Report to the starter and don't forget to admire his flowers ... at Test Valley GC in Hampshire. "Okay so there's a 'tilt' to this photo, but it's deliberate and I think it sells the picture. I love a good starter's hut on a golf course - every course should have one! And look at that perfect little flower bed".
Amen Corner At Cams Hall
Looking down a spectacular Par Four at Cams Hall Estate GC on England's South Coast, a Crown Golf club. "There's a little Amen Corner-like sequence of holes early in the round at Cams Hall Estate GC, down near the estuary. It's wonderful to photograph".
Cottesmore Lake At Dawn
Early morning finds the golf course at Cottesmore G&CC, in West Sussex, bathed in glorious colour. "I got an unbelievable sunrise that morning. Great views literally everywhere. It was a dream shoot, and this was my favourite of the lot. Not a breath of wind and not another soul around. Just me, the dawn and the golf course - just how I like it".
Young golfers at Chichester GC have perfected The Look - but what about The Swing? "This photo says it all about golf these days - our sport has its critics for being stuffy, but I don't see any of that here. These lads were having a great time down at the driving range on a Saturday afternoon. I gave it a retro look in Lightroom in post-production, on a whim".
A misty dawn at stunning Paultons GC in Hampshire. "I had to hold my breath to keep the camera still enough to get things sharp. Shooting with the D800E at a low shutter speed can be challenging - its mighty sensor picks up so much detail, you're always guarding against camera shake. 1/60s is as low as I can go with this camera, and still get it sharp".
HALF WEDGE HENRY
Hit those half-wedge shots with confidence... at the National Golf Centre, Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire. "This was taken at the England Golf HQ. He's a low-handicapper who let me stalk him for a few minutes while he used the superb short game area there. The weather wasn't great so I gave this one the 'magazine treatment' in post-production".
Ryder Cup Captains
Captains Colin Montgomerie and Corey Pavin pose before the 2010 Ryder Cup matches at The Celtic Manor Resort, Wales. "One of the moments where I enjoyed a bit of privilege. I'm a golf fan so I geeked out for a moment while taking this photo. This was taken exactly a year before the Cup was staged at Celtic Manor".
Majestic Moor Allerton
Moor Allerton Golf Club, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England in spring 2014. A Robert Trent Jones Sr. course. "Moor Allerton gives you lots of great scenes - it's an ongoing project for me, as I live quite close to it. This scene is made to be photographed - it has everything. The elevation change, the foreground detail, the variety in the trees, the reeds in the water in the bottom of the little valley. It's a nice menu for a photograph".
Twin sisters enjoy a golf lesson at The National Golf Centre, Woodhall Spa, England. Customer: The National Golf Centre. "Cute beyond belief. Their Mum was standing right beside me, proudly. I wonder which one will turn out to be the better golfer ... ".
Tranquil Sand Moor
Tranquility one morning as the day begins at Sand Moor GC near Leeds. "I like the gentle rise of the green, lifted slightly to stand proud from the fairway - it created a lovely shadow in the dawn light".
Oak Park Dawn
Gentle early sunlight produces a serene scene at Oak Park GC, a Crown Golf club on England's Surrey / Hampshire border. "I like the sense of stillness you get on a golf course at dawn. I think this one captures that. The light on the tree to the right adds a lot to this photo".
All Too Much
Being photographed was all too much for one golfer at South Winchester GC in Hampshire. "Maybe he was shy. Or maybe he was simply fed up with the way he was playing. I'm just happy you can't see up his shorts".
Dawn at classic Sand Moor GC near Leeds in West Yorkshire. "When shooting a golf course, you're normally looking for depth of field. From the trees in the foreground, to the sprinklers in the far distance, this photo has plenty of it. It's a focusing challenge, but very satisfying when you get it right".
Dawn at Hampton Court
Hampton Court Palace GC is one of the jewels in the Crown Golf group of clubs. At the 'magic hour', few UK golf clubs are more peaceful. "Hampton Court is a very open golf course, and quite flat, so you need to be up early, or stay out late, to get the help you need from the low sun".
The Griffin Course at Cottesmore Hotel, Golf and Country Club, early one summer morning. "Another from my perfect dawn at Cottesmore. Very happy with the composition of this photo - the mirror-like lake adds a lot to the scene".
A satisfying feeling - a golfer nails his drive at The Hertfordshire G&CC, one of the Crown Golf group of clubs. "This was an actual drive, and not a pose. I used a long lens of course. This guy was playing in a competitive match, but he was a great sport and let me trail him for a few holes".
A Flash of Light at The Hetrfordshire
"I waited for over an hour to get a single glimpse of the setting sun - sometimes you have to have faith and great patience. So I sat in a golf cart, made some calls (the course had fallen quiet), and froze my butt off on a rainy day until the sun descended to the thin break in the clouds which I guessed would produce something interesting. My patience was repaid with a burst of great light which lasted less than sixty seconds...".
Make sure your ball doesn't take a dip in this lake, at Chichester GC. "This is an instant-impact photo - the sky, the mirror-calm lake, the reeds framing everything. One that really sells the golf club I think".
The new golf course at West London Golf Centre, near Ruislip. "Brand new - this golf course had never been played on, when I photographed it. It was a blowy day with clouds scudding quickly across the sun, so I had to be quick to get the right light on the green".
A cheerful golfer at The Bristol Golf Club, in the west of England. "There was a lovely vibe about The Bristol when I was there - it was very hot and sunny, which always helps. This guy was a natural."
Moor Allerton Spring
Moor Allerton Golf Club, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England in spring 2014. A Robert Trent Jones Sr. course. "This is the 27th and final hole - it's a terrific approach to the green. Quite a heroic one in fact. It was springtime so not all the leaves are out, and there's a slight wildness about this photo which I like. It was rather cold ... ".
THE EARLY ONES
Two lads getting an early round in, as the sun rises at Paultons GC in Hampshire. "They were silhouetted against sun - it really was very, very early. Afterwards, on the computer, I was able to retrieve some detail from the shadows, and there they emerged - smiling in the knowledge that they had the best part of the day to themselves".
Hampton Court Sky
A green at Hampton Court Palace GC, near central London. "You wouldn't think that Hampton Court would give you much, as a photographer. It is quite flat. However, there is an other-worldly nature about the place. I can't quite put my finger on it, but it's special and I love taking pictures there".
A major sand trap at Traditions GC in Surrey. "Golf photographers often like to make the bunkers the star of their photographs. This one was too big and curvy to resist".
The Bridge At Heythrop Park
Twilight illuminates the 6th Green at Heythrop Park Resort, in rural Oxfordshire, England. "Most golf course photographs are, quite naturally, wide views. The bridge at Heythrop Park's gorgeous 6th hole gave me the opportunity to find a different kind of photo. It's taken with a long lens, and I think the angular brickwork makes a nice contrast with the gently sloping background, dappled in sun and shadow".
A young golfer enjoys a golf lesson at The National Golf Centre, Woodhall Spa, England. Customer: The National Golf Centre. "Just check him out. Unselfconscious kids are great fun to photograph, and of course their parents are always close by".
Spring Trees at Moor Allerton
Moor Allerton Golf Club, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England in spring 2014. A Robert Trent Jones Sr. course. "A springtime shoot usually means less leaves, and more tree trunks! But you get decent colours too, and although this is clearly a slightly wintry-looking scene, the manicured green and surrounds still make it a shot you're dying to make - whether with a camera, or a short iron in your hand".
Danger At Sunbury
A difficult target at Sunbury GC, near London. "Not only a difficult target, but a difficult photograph. With two lakes you'd think this green would be a dream to photograph, but because of the lie of the land I had to work hard to get the right angle for a shot. Some holes just present themselves for you - others make you sweat a bit. This was definitely in the latter category".
Ready To Play
A golfer arrives for his match at Wickham Park GC, a Crown Golf club in Hampshire. "I love candid golfer photos taken with a long lens, like this one. I get a bit paparazzi sometimes ... you don't see a lot of photography like this on golf club websites. A bit more artistic than the norm, and perhaps not right for every golf club owner, but he's a good young model and this image would look great in a brochure".
Pine Ridge Sunset
A glorious scene at Pine Ridge, in Surrey, England - popular with London's green fee golfers. "One of my earlier photoshoots, and note the nearly-invisible red flag. This was before I started asking clubs to put out white or yellow flags for my photoshoots. Pine Ridge's huge trees make it a challenge to get the framing right sometimes - note the colossal tree on the right!"
Cams Hall Challenge
A demanding Par Three at Cams Hall Estate GC, in Hampshire. "I had to be patient on this one. The sun was hidden away, so I sat and ate sandwiches for 45 minutes, watching the evening golfers go by, until the sun came out again. I love the drama of this shot, and the unusual-shaped promontory which reaches out into the lake".
Golfers do the gentlemanly thing, on the 18th green at The Bristol Golf Club. "No matter who's played well, and who's had a nightmare round, golfers always shake hands at the end. The Bristol's 18th has great views over The Bristol Channel, and the trees frame the handshakes perfectly".
Star Of The Future
A young golfer powers one down the range at Surrey Downs GC. "This lad was scarily good for his age. He had just had a golf lesson, and stayed on the range hitting countless balls until his Dad arrived to pick him up. It brought back memories - I used to do the exact same thing".
Dawn Of The Deer
A misty sunrise silhouettes a herd of deer at Hampton Court Palace GC in central London. "Seconds after driving my buggy onto the golf course, at 5am, I found this scene - a herd of deer awakening from their night's sleep, with a glorious misty sunrise in the background. Sometimes I'm very fortunate to be able to see things like this - which very few people ever get to see on a golf course. It's a special place".
Blue Mountain Group Golf Lesson
A group of golfers have a lesson from a PGA professional at Blue Mountain GC, Berkshire, England. "I'm never convonced how much these sort of calisthenics help when you're faced with a tricky chip shot over a bunker, but it looked good on camera".
Four golfers having a happy day at Sunbury GC, near London. "I love finding photos like this out on the golf course. Four lads up for a laugh. Genuine images like this help to sell the sport, and I wish we saw more of them, instead of the artificial-looking stock photography which is so easy to spot in many golf club brochures".
The commanding clubhouse at The Hertfordshire G&CC overlooks the 9th green on this attractive championship-standard golf course. "Red flag against red-brick clubhouse - another shot where I wish they'd put out the white flags. But my shoot at The Hertfordshire was a revelation to me - I had no idea it was so photogenic".
The Friendly Club.
Two golfes pose for the camera at The Bristol GC, part of the Crown Golf group. "Let's all agree that the guy on the right looks like a golfer you'd normally expect to encounter on a British golf course - and the guy on the left doesn't. He had a great look and was a brilliant bloke to boot".
A greenside bunker threatens at Batchworth Park GC in Hertfordshire, England. "Still one of my personal best after all these years, I think. This was an early photoshoot, and this photo set the template for so many that I have taken subsequently. The curves which define the edge of the green, the matching curves of the big bunker, the off-centre composition, the dramatic sky ... this is how I like to compose a golf photograph, and I suppose that if I have a 'look', this is it".
Flag and Dew
A greenkeeper removes the morning dew at Paultons GC in Hampshire. "I like the way the sunlight has illuminated the flag, while the greenkeeper is in silhouette"..
Sunset And 6th
The beautiful 6th Hole at Heythrop Park Resort, in rural Oxfordshire, England. "This is a hole which looks good from virtually every angle. It's a testing short par four which asks you to decide between booming one off the tee, aiming to carry the green, or play it safe to the right with a mid-iron. Luckily a photographer has an easier choice .. where to stand! One of the few shots where a dark-coloured flag would have improved it, as the white one rather hides against the light background of the lake".
GIRL'S GOLF LESSON
A PGA professional gives a young golfer a lesson at the Crown Golf Academy at The Hertfordshire GC, England. "There are young people flooding into the sport at golf clubs all over the UK, and the more images of this which we get out there, the better it is for the sport".
Golfers pose while waiting for a fairway to clear at The Bristol GC. "These lads were waiting on the tee, so I asked them to pose on the viewing ladder. It was a scorching hot day..."
The pro shop team at Pyrford GC in Surrey. "Three great smiles - what more could you want from a staff photograph?"
Pyrford Lake At Dawn
Dawn mists begin to lift at Pyrford GC in Surrey. "One of my favourites, from one of my earliest photoshoots.There are flaws in this image, but I am really happy with the composition".
A photo taken to provide space for advertising messages, at Chichester GC. "The client specifically asked for a photo with a golfer and lots of blue sky - luckily, this friendly chap was happy to oblige".
Clubhouse On Misty Morning
The TewntyTen clubhouse at the magnificent Celtic Manor Resort, in Wales, one spring morning. "This became a cover photo on a golf magazine. I was at Celtic Manor on a media visit during the build-up to Ryder Cup 2010".
A lightning tree stands sentinel to a green at Cottesmore G&CC in West Sussex. "I really like the fact that the club took the decision to leave the tree there - it adds a memorable detail to the hole".
The Wide View
A wide view of an early hole on Batchworth Park GC's superb golf course. "I found this hole more attractive the further I stood back from it. Sometimes you have to work hard to find the right angle, but most golf holes have got a sweet spot, if you have the time to to find it".
Golfers waiting to hit at Cams Hall Estate GC, on England's South Coast. "Well over 200 years between them, and three of them at least are still happy to be alive. I'm not sure that the lady golfer was that delighted to be photographed that day, so I didn't hang around long".
A beautifully-mown fairway on the 9th Hole at The Shire London. "Contour mowing can make the difference between a long slog uphill, and an exciting-looking Tour golf-style challenge. The Shire's greens staff, led by the steely-eyed Tony, presented the course magnificently for the photoshoot".
A watery dawn at Chesfield Downs G&CC in Hertfordshire, a Crown Golf club. "This was definitely a rainy start to the day, and my feet were soaking most of the morning. This shot was taken a couple of minutes after the sun broke through - there's an ethereal quality about this photo which I really like".
A pretty Par Three at The Priors Golf Course in Essex, a Crown Golf club. "Sometimes even the humblest golf course can throw up a few surprises. The Priors is very much an entry-level pay-and-play golf course, but this scene would grace any Championship golf course".
The World Record
Captain Stuart Ball of the British Army tees off at Hampton Court Palace GC early one day in July, with Major General Andrew Gregory, President of the Army Golf Association. "Capt Ball played 24 rounds of golf in just 5 days to set a new, albeit unofficial world record, to raise money for the Scotty's Little Soldiers charity. I trailed them for their first round of the day. Stuart is an amazingly determined guy, and what he did was an incredible feat of endurance".
A golfer at Batchworth Park GC, after an enjoyable day's golf. "I believe this chap was the Club Captain that year - clearly he hadn't yet received the bar bill".
Two Flags, Two Trees
A PGA professional golfer approaches the final green at Frilford Heath GC, England, in a two-flag PowerPlay Golf event.Client: private. "One of my favourite PowerPlay Golf photographs. Someone had lit a bonfire close to the clubhouse, and the smoke added a bit of mystery to the scene. This photo has was reproduced many times around the world, during the PPG launch".
An autumnal scene at South Essex GC, a Crown Golf club. "Normally I don't do many golf course photoshoots this late in the year, in England. It was November 1st, and a very chilly Friday morning. It was a difficult shoot, but there was a colourful dawn, matched in this corner of the golf course by the trees and the grasses".
A course marshal at The Warwickshire G&CC, driving a golf cart fitted with DSG TAG tracking. "A promotional shoot for DSG, and one of my favourite people shots I have taken at a golf course. Close-up, the character lines in this gentleman's face are wonderful".
The climax to the Nicklaus Signature Course at magnificent St Mellion International in Cornwall, England, flagship venue of the Crown Golf group. "There are all sorts of things wrong with this photo, technically, and the CEO of the company preferred it without the buggy tracks in the dew, so I Photoshopped them out for their brochure. But I prefer them left in - they lead the eye to the green".
Two Flags PowerPlay Golf
Two PowerPlay Golf flags on the TwentyTen Ryder Cup course at The Celtic Manor Resort, Wales. Customer: PowerPlay Golf. "One of the main PPG promotional shots. Later that weekend, I enjoyed accompanying the first group out in PowerPlay Golf Ignition - Graeme McDowell, Paula Creamer and Victor Dubuission. Two then-reigning U.S.Open champions, and a future Ryder Cup hero. I had fun".
Links-style rough forms a tough challenge at Batchworth Park GC, in Hertfordshire. "Look - a bunker rake. Nowadays, I always remove these in post-production, but this was an early photoshoot where I hadn't developed that habit. Nowadays it sticks out like a sore thumb, to my eyes, but it's still quite a dramatic photo I think".
Trees surround a green at Pine Ridge GC in Surrey. "Pine Ridge has to be one of the most extraordinary pay-and-play golf courses in the UK. More or less every hole is spectacular".
A golfer concentrates during a golf lesson at The National Golf Centre, Woodhall Spa, England. Customer: The National Golf Centre. "This chap was belting it miles down the range at Woodhall Spa. He posed for me for a couple of minutes - this was a wide-angle lens held right up close to his face".
Don't drive the ball too far ... A hazard crosses the fairway at Pine Ridge Golf Club in Camberley, Surrey.
Be The Ball
Post-shot concentration at Merrist Wood GC. "Something tells me this one didn't go quite where she wanted it to."
Two Greens At Dawn
Early morning at St Mellion International, Cornwall, England. Customer: Crown Golf.
Looking towards the final green and clubhouse at the Seve Ballesteros-designed The Shire London. "The Shire closes with a fiendish S-shaped lake which snakes around the 18th green. S for Seve, naturally. And for Splash."
That was jammy. No, I meant to do it. Well I'm still three up ...
A ghostly scene, early morning at Pyrford GC in Surrey. "Beautiful mists that morning at beautiful Pyrford, where almost every hole is pretty as a picture."
Approaching a green at Pine Ridge GC, one of the UK's most popular pay and play courses.
A golfer relaxes after playing at Batchworth Park GC, Rickmansworth, England. Client: Crown Golf.
Sunny Putting Green
Sunlight hits the practice putting green at Orpington GC, Kent, England. Client: Crown Golf.
Golf Is Over
A young golfer after a practice session at Pine Ridge GC, south of London. Customer: Crown Golf.
I'M SURE IT WAS HER ROUND...
A golfer buys refreshments after playing at Batchworth Park GC, Rickmansworth, England. Client: Crown Golf.
An inviting par 3 at The Shropshire GC. "Some holes just sit up nicely and beg to be photographed. This is one of them. Look at that lovely carpet of green, in the lower-left foreground. Who wouldn't want to chip off that?"
Marking His Card
A PGA professional marks his scorecard in a PowerPlay Golf event at Fulford Heath GC, near Birmingham, England. Client: PowerPlay Golf.
An inland links view at The Shire London.
INVISIBLE RED FLAG
A fine scene, but where's the flag? "I always ask golf clubs to put out white or yellow flags for a photoshoot. This image shows why. A great-looking hole, but the red flag against dark trees in the background more or less disappears."
You either drill it low, or hit a clever fade, or risk a big draw on this hole...
TRY THIS IN 50 YEARS
A young golfer concentrates as she lines up a putt at The Hertfordshire GC, England. "Many older golfers will look at this, and instantly think of their knees ... "
THE DUCK FAMILY
Quietly getting on with whatever ducks do: a misty early morning scene on the golf course.
HE'S CHIPPED IN AGAIN
I don't believe it. That's three times now. Well I'm not getting the drinks in. No way. He's just been lucky.
A magnificent sunrise at Cottesmore Hotel, G&CC. "My morning at Cottesmore was truly humbling - one of the best sunrises I have ever had. I wanted to be everywhere at once. This shot was taken a while after the sun had come up, and more or less straight into the light."
DID YOU GET THAT?
This golfer may have just holed his putt. "He gave this one a right old fist-pump. Did you get that mate? Yes, I did."
Competitors line up at a PGA professional golf event at Frilford Heath GC, England. Client: private.
EVEN GOD CAN'T HIT A ONE IRON
Darkness and light at the mighty Shire London.
YOU WALK, I'LL RIDE
Sorry son, I know you like riding in the buggy. It's just that your legs are younger than ours. Only another 6,500 yards to go.
A PGA professional gives a lady lady golfer a lesson at the Crown Golf Academy at Chesfield Downs GC, England. Customer: Crown Golf.
Ethereal sunrise at Hampton Court Palace GC.
IT'S ALL LAID OUT
From the balcony at Cottesmore.
TAKE A STEP BACK
A wide angle view of The Hertfordshire G&CC.
WE'RE COMING THROUGH
We're coming your way, and there's a group behind us. so you'd better take our picture quickly ...
BRISTOL'S BEAUTIFUL CORNER
The 17th at The Bristol GC, nestling prettily against the hillside.
Majesty of the Pines
Dramatic tees line the fairway at Pine Ridge.
Preparing the golf course for the day, at Cams Hall Estate GC.
WE SHOULD HAVE TALKED FIRST
Why didn't you tell me you were wearing yours today? Well I've got the green insert on the buttons so it's different. Well my collar's got the green stripe. "But yeah, you still look like you got dressed together."
Dawn beauty at Hampton Court Palace GC. "A summer sunrise at Hampton Court is a surreal experience, especially if you get the mist."
Beauty at The Hertfordshire
Beauty is everywhere at The Hertfordshire G&CC, part of the Crown Golf group of clubs.
Lofting a shot on a par three.
ENJOY THE VIEW
Spectacular view across the Severn Estuary from The Bristol's 18th.
The day draws towards its close at Mill Green GC.
MY OLD BLOSSOM
A springtime scene at Addington Court GC, near Croydon in south London.
JUMP FOR JOY 3
Juniors enjoy a golf lesson at Blue Mountain GC in Berkshire.
A challenging par five at Sherfield Oaks GC, near Basingstoke.
An unconventional view of a hole at Cams Hall Estate GC. "I wanted to get all the grass in the foreground into this photo, which is taken at a location from where you would not normally view this hole."
A steep bank behind the green offers the perfect vantage point to photograph a hole at The Bristol GC.
Two young golfers at the National Golf Centre, at Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire.
Clouds presaging rain one morning at Chesfield Downs G&CC.
A winding fairway at Broke Hill GC.
Giving a lesson at PIne Ridge GC. "It sometimes takes a while - and a fast shutter speed in motor drive mode - to get the right tracer effect of the ball. This one is exactly what I was after."
SUNBURST AT CAMS
Sun breaks through at Cams Hall Estate GC.
GOLF AND YACHTS
A delicious corner of Cams Hall Estate GC, near Fareham in Hampshire.
THE FINAL CHALLENGE
A bit of water to carry on the final hole at The Bristol GC.
Nearing the end of the round at Merrist Wood GC. "There is a studio lighting-type effect on this photo. One of the final shafts of sunlight of the day struck this golfer right on the bonce as he pulled his trolley across the little bridge."
GLORIOUS MILL GREEN
Great to photograph, but hard to play. A par four at Mill Green GC in Hertfordshire.
5th Green at Heythrop Park Resort
The 5th Green dappled by sunlight at Heythrop Park Resort, in rural Oxfordshire, England.
Early morning at Hampton Court Palace GC.
BROKE HILL CLUBHOUSE
The imposing clubhouse at Broke Hill GC, south of London.
THE SPORTING FINISH
Handshakes all round - the traditional end to a game of a golf.
Spring 2014 at Moor Allerton Golf Club
Moor Allerton Golf Club, Leeds, West Yorkshire, England in spring 2014. A Robert Trent Jones Sr. course.
Soft evening light at Cams Hall Estate GC.
One of the challenging par fours at Sunbury GC, near London.
FROM A DISTANCE
A distant green at Kirtlington GC. "When you photograph a golf course, you have to look beyond the obvious. This shot was taken with a long zoom lens, and while you can see this view from several holes on the course, it's not an obvious photo opportunity as it is so far away. But with the proper kit, you can pick out the distant details. And voila, one of the best views at Kirtlington gets captured for posterity."
QUICK DO SOMETHING
Two lady golfers trying not to look silly, as the photographer asks for a pose. "You have to make a very quick assessment of what sort of mood golfers are in, when you suddenly appear and ask for a photo while they are playing. Naturally, I never disturb an actual shot, but once in a while I will ask people to do something to strike an interesting pose. So they lined up this putt together, laughing throughout. They were really good-natured about it."
OVER HERE GENTS
Smiling for the camera at Harrogate GC. "I never have any idea what I am going to say, when I need to get people to smile for the camera. 'Smile please gents' is probably what comes out a lot of the time though. Most people do. Sometimes it looks forced, and sometimes - as here - you unlock some great character."
A golfer attempts to salvage a par out of a fairway bunker. "Many modern golf club websites lend themselves to this sort of photography - a wide-angle view of what would otherwise be quite a conventional golf photograph. I like the scale here."
TOPPED IT AGAIN
"Oh God I'm on camera and topped it like a total idiot. Hey mate, can I reload and hit a decent one?" (I never see where the ball goes, but as a golfer myself I can tell when a fella has thinned it 100 yds into the trees on the right....).
Autumn colours creep onto the golf course, as the summer fades. "When the leaves start to fall, you need to move fast to make the most of the magic hour - as it doesn't last long. Before you know it, you've lost the light, but it's glorious while it lasts. When I am taking photos at dawn, I speed around looking for the first greens to be lit by the rising sun. This was very early one day in September, at Roehampton Club in west London. Peace and solitude, close to the heart of the city."
FIVE STAR VIEW
Looking up the hill towards Tewkesbury Park's five-star hotel. "This is a lovely hotel golf course, remodelled recently by my friend Peter McEvoy OBE. I stayed in the hotel during the shoot, and my goodness it's a beauty."
ALL EYES ON ME
The pro at Kirtlington GC, with a school group one summer's evening. "This was a lovely warm, calm evening and I came across a large group from a local school having lessons at the club. You need to secure permission for this type of thing, which I duly did."
Lovely bunkering on an approach at Harrogate GC. "Sometimes I just like the lie of the land, as I drive up a hole. This green sits in an attractive little dell, framed by trees, but it looks even better from a short distance back down the fairway, where this well-shaped bunker lies in wait for your tee shot."
THAT'S MY FLAG
Making sure the sponsor's logo is visible, on a corporate golf day at Dreamland GC in Baku, Azerbaijan. "ACE was the guy in the middle's company. The gents on either side were senior executives at an oil company. All three were great fun to photograph. Now, let's stretch out that flag and get a good look at who sponsored today's event ..."
YOU DO THE HOKEY COKEY
"You put your left foot in, your left foot out. In, out. Shake it all about. Look guys he'll be gone soon, let's do this a couple more times, make the photographer happy, then we can get back to the real lesson."
ROUND THE CORNER
A beautiful spot at Wildernesse GC. "This is the second green, nestling around a right-hand dog leg. I came back here frequently during the 48-hour shoot, trying to capture the setting sunlight on the green. As soon as I arrived at Wildernesse that week, I knew it would be fun - there's a high percentage of good-looking golf holes there."
Bashing the ball closer to the green. "This lady was so cooperative, and was happy for me to track her progress for a few holes. We had a good chat about marketing - which was her line of work, as well as mine. She was a very competent golfer, and moved it quite a distance."
A golfer puts down his score. "This is as close to a 'stock shot' as I ever get ... an anonymous golfer, marking his scorecard. Could be anyone, could be anywhere - and that's often useful."
THE BUGGY SHOT
A meticulously-arranged line of golf carts, by the 1st tee at Hoebridge GC. "Behind some photos is an awful lot of reversing, repositioning, running back up ladders to check the view ... buggies don't just appear by tees all on their own, you know. Precision golf cart wrangling is all part of the job. Note the gently-curving line, the equidistant spacing, and the wheels all turned in the same direction. These things make me happy."
Eyeing up the next shot at the range. "This guy was a heck of a golfer, and I found out that he was trying for his Tour card. Thoroughly nice guy, and happy to pose for photos. I sent him some for his collection, afterwards."
JUST BEING SILLY
Just a normal Saturday morning on the golf course. "I presume the guy on the bottom right was being punished for not wearing a hat."
HEY TOSH, GOT A TOSHIBA?
A BGL Group golf pro gives a lesson using the latest technology. "Look closely .. somebody's carried it over 250 off the tee, dead straight. Happy days."
Straight Down The Middle
A great finish, at Surrey Downs GC.
A golfer checks his score after finishing another round of golf at the beautiful South Winchester GC in Hampshire.
Sunbury GC, near London, offers incredible value to golfers.
Spring 2014 at Heythrop Park Resort
The gorgeous Par Three 13th Hole at Heythrop Park Resort, in rural Oxfordshire, England.
Age Shall Not Wither Them
Four friendly lads with centuries of experience at Milford GC in Surrey.
Sunbury GC, near London, is one of the capital's surprises - a great golf course at a great price.
A single-figure golfer strides after his drive, at Chichester GC in West Sussex.
The Short Par Four
It's about brains, not brawn, in this corner of Surrey Downs GC.
The huge double green outside the clubhouse, at Surrey Downs GC.
SURREY'S HIDDEN GEM
An attractive scene at Surrey Downs GC.
A links golf-style scene at Addington Court GC, near London.
It's easy when the fairway is 150 yards wide ... at Surrey Downs GC.
Sand Moor GC near Leeds is one of West Yorkshire's classic inland challenges.
Addington Court Afternoon
Tranquility at Addington Court GC, near London.
A Bunkered Approach
Bunkers guard a green at South Winchester GC in Hampshire.
A little help for your tee shot, at Surrey Downs GC.
Yet another gorgeous scene at Surrey Downs GC.
The Lucky Few
South Winchester GC, in Hampshire, is overlooked by a lucky few home-owners.
Eccleston Chipping Green
Great practice putting and chipping greens at Eccleston Park GC.
The Big Finish
On the 18th at Surrey Downs GC, near London, golfers face one last challenge ...
The greenkeepers have been swishing the frost away at Milford GC, in Surrey.
An attractive corner of Addington Court GC near London - the UK's oldest pay & play course.
Sunrise at Stunning Sand Moor
An early-morning scene at one of England's classic inland tracks - Sand Moor GC near Leeds.
Four On The Tee
A ladies' club match, at South Winchester GC in Hampshire.
Passing It On
A PGA professional passes on his knowledge to a young pupil, at Surrey Downs GC.
A golfer splashes out at Eccleston Park GC in Merseyside.
Take Dead Aim
A golfer at Eccleston Park GC in Merseyside, mid-swing .. and it's looking good so far.
A QUIET EVENING
A beautiful par three tucked away in the corner, at Sand Moor GC near Leeds.
Risk And Reward
A classic risk and reward short par four at Surrey Downs GC.
Sunrays at Sand Moor
Early-morning sun strikes a green at classic inland course Sand Moor GC near Leeds.
A young golfer nails a practice shot at Sunbury GC, near London.
A golf coach at Chichester GC uses modern technology to record a pupil's swing.
A glorious end to a round of golf, at South Winchester GC in Hampshire.
Golf at dawn, at Surrey Downs GC.
A serene early-morning scene at Chichester GC, in West Sussex.
Superb course conditioning at Surrey Downs GC.
KIDS GONE HOME
Having a quiet round on the adventure golf course, at the end of the day. "This couple more or less had the adventure golf course to themselves, late one evening at Hoebridge GC. It was heaving earlier in the day, but this was late evening and peaceful .. the perfect time to tackle the crocodiles and pirate ships."
Giving a golf lesson. "It's hard to sneak up behind a golf pro, when you're trying to climb a big ladder and poking a camera over his shoulder. This professional was slightly uneasy about being photographed, so I only took a couple of quick snaps of him and his pupil."
On a corporate day, watching his ball flight. "This is the tee shot to a tricky par 3 over water. He looks to have hit a decent one. When you're trying to score points for the team, it matters even more."
Juniors obediently swinging in unison, to make the photographer happy. "Once more, here's me ordering golfers around for the sake of a decent photo. As these kids didn't speak much English, I mimed what I wanted them to do, then gave them the old three-two-one."
EARLY ONE MORNING ...
...just as the sun was rising, at Harrogate GC. "Quite often, when the sun rises, your photo gets blown out completely by the blazing rays of the sun. But if you get to your location just before the sun rises ... that's the start of the magic hour."
A golfer celebrates a hole in one with his friends. "I came across these guys moments after the man in the middle had aced their previous hole, a par three at Wildernesse GC in Kent. I wonder if he kept the ball. He was still euphoric - they had just walked off the green. This was before he realised what the bar bill was going to be."
A young golfer successfully escapes a sand trap. "This fella had his girlfriend along for the day. She was his caddie and she wore an unfeasibly short skirt."
The VIP Room at iPlayGolf Milton Keynes. "Neil and his team had created more or less the ideal indoor golf VIP room, complete with its own bar and flat screen TV. The perfect setup for a few hours on the golf course - indoors!"
Six young people on the short course at Hoebridge GC. "What motivates a group of youngsters to rent golf clubs and hit balls on a short golf course, these days? However they attracted them there, credit goes to the BGL Group, Hoebridge GC and the hundreds of other UK golf clubs who are somehow managing to get young people off their phones, and into golf. Bravo guys!"
Solid colours at Dreamland GC, Baku. "It's rare you get such a minimalist view on a golf course. Swathes of solid colour - green, blue and white, and hardly a straight line to be seen. Just how I like it. Another unconventional view, looking back to the green from along the buggy path."
ONE TO BEAT
A low-handicap golfer practices his bunker shots at Harrogate GC. "I saw this chap out on the golf course later. He's got game, as they say. Definitely one of the men to beat in club competitions. Try to ignore the greenkeeper's tractor parked by the pro shop in the background ..."
A secluded corner at Wildernesse. "Often, the best golf courses give you 18 holes which each lie in their own private space. It's not always possible, due to space, but Wildernesse gives it a pretty good go. This is a magnificent hole, presented to perfection, early in the round. The 4th, I think. To get the right effect, I had to stand on the very top rung of the ladder, and hold the camera high in the air ... then click and hope. You need elevation to show off some holes at their best. Otherwise how would you see all the stripes?"
Sharing a joke after a round of golf. "When I used to publish FORE! Magazine, we used to live by the mantra "happy, smiling faces" when it came to showing club golfers in the magazine. Faces much like this, in fact. Golf isn't all doom and gloom."
WIDE WILDERNESSE 1
A golfer plays to the last at Wildernesse GC in Kent. "Seemingly a wide-angle shot, but that's just the way I cropped it. This was actually taken from around 300 yards away, a snapshot actually, sitting in my golf cart with the zoom lens. The huge pixel count of the Nikon D800E makes cropping well into images like this possible, while still leaving yourself a huge, print-quality photograph. I felt the wide-screen format suited this photo, with the majestic Wildernesse clubhouse and patio overlooking the 18th - which looks even better looking back down the hole."
WIDE WILDERNESSE 2
The last moments of a ladies' playing lesson. "The woman in bright pink was a teaching pro, giving the other two a nine-hole playing lesson. It all looked extremely sociable - a very nice way to spend a couple of hours late on a Friday afternoon."
Waiting for the green ahead to clear. "He was Dutch, over here on business, and enjoying a few hours away from the City. A tall man, like a lot of Dutch people. They're the tallest in Europe. Mind you, most people look tall to me. I blame my parents."
The crack team of greenkeepers, at Wildernesse GC in Kent, England. "As good a team as I have come across in the ten years or so since I started taking golf club photographs. These guys did a stupendous job getting the golf course ready for the photoshoot. I couldn't fault their work, and hopefully the photos do them justice."
An attractive scene one summer's evening at Kirtlington GC. "Believe it or not, this is the practice green. It's a belter. In fact, it's a contender for prettiest hole on the golf course, even though it's not strictly on the golf course."
A long putt drops. "Shorts above the knee, socks below the knee, and shirt hanging out. At other, stuffier golf clubs, the fashion police would already be hurrying his way, but it's summertime at Kirtlington, and everything's all right - especially since he's just holed a 30-footer."
He's in the groove again, on the range at Kirtlington. "Being an avid golfer myself, I know what this feels like. Focused on every ball strike, feeling it leave the clubface, watching the ball flight with a critical eye. Assess, adjust, repeat. Great swing, man."
Two young golfers on Kirtlington's short course. "I know this trick .. you're a bit shorter, so you stand on the uphill side when someone takes a photo of you. Who wouldn't? Fair play to him. I'm betting both of these lads have a decent golfer's sun tan ... brown arms, like a reverse Arsenal strip."
A group of schoolchildren take a chipping lesson. "In theory, your 80 year old grandma could be as good a chipper as Jordan Speith. It's about feel, not power. In real life, it's fiendishly hard not to slow down on the shot and stub your club into the ground. It's golf's second most nervous shot, after the short putt. here, the pro at Kirtlington tries to reassure a group of children that chipping's really nothing to worry about."
Three schoolboys jumping for joy (actually, for the photographer) at Kirtlington GC. "One of these days I will go a whole shoot without asking a bunch of juniors to jump in the air for me, but it hasn't happened yet. Junior golfers are just so springy, and when you're trying to attract youngsters into the game, this sort of image works."
MAGIC HOUR ENDS
A lone golfer strolls in the evening sunlight at Redbourn GC. "The end of the day, and a serene moment as a pleasant round of golf at Redbourn draws to a close. Golf courses are so peaceful as the sun sets. It's a magic hour in many different ways."