Global sporting events are a chance for photographers at the top of their game to showcase their craft, but they also provide an opportunity to equip the next generation of photojournalists with the confidence and skills they need to succeed.
In a bid to encourage young talent, and also to promote diversity and inclusivity, Canon and Agence France-Presse (AFP) teamed up ahead of Rugby World Cup 2023™ to match AFP professionals with 20 budding photojournalists. The mentees, most of whom were under 30, were not only able to learn from the pros but also had the opportunity to try out the latest Canon kit, including the Canon EOS R3 and in some cases RF lenses.
For many of the mentees this was their first opportunity to photograph such a major sports event, and was an introduction to the rigorous standards of AFP photography. “These are things that you cannot learn in a classroom or at university”, says Eric Baradat, deputy news director in charge of Photo, Graphics, Documentation and Data at AFP. “I was totally mesmerised by the result. And in a field dominated by men, it was good to give the opportunity to young, aspiring women photographers to prove themselves, and they did extremely well.”