The premise was a simple one, to take the portraits of the Aldeburgh and Thorpeness Rugby Club senior team just after they had played a hard match of rugby for 80 minutes. I wanted to capture their fatigue, cuts, bruises and muddy faces after playing 80 minutes on a cold, windy and wet afternoon. They had a great game against Woodbridge, although in the end, they lost, great for me and not so great for me. I was hoping to get grumpy cold and wet rugby players. But I was wrong, what I got was an enthusiastic and upbeat group of men who could not have been more helpful. All willing to have their portraits taken. I had to keep reminding each one whilst taking their portraits that they had just lost and I was trying to get them not smiling, looking like they had just won.
I had set up a temporary studio in Aldeburgh and Thorpeness Rugby Club equipment room, which I gather is still being renovated, in order to take the portraits of the rugby players immediately after the game. They literally walked off the pitch through the back door and into the equipment room, where I was able to take the photographs immediately.
I have to say a big thank you to the club president Kevin Stannard and the team captain Matthew who were kind enough to help me organise this photo shoot. Also, I need to thank the team and those actively involved in the Aldeburgh and Thorpeness Rugby Club who allowed me to take their portraits. A project likes this really is an all or nothing portrait shoot and thankfully the whole team were great sports.