This series looks to challenge people’s misconceptions about amateurs and looks to reclaim the use of the word into one of praise rather than criticism.
These days the word amateur carries negative connotations, people replace it with alternatives like ‘enthusiast’, ‘non-professional’ and ‘hobbyist’ to avoid causing offence. Although most often used in a negative context (“that looks like the work of an amateur!”), the origins of the word amateur is from a much more positive place. Amateur is derived from the latin ‘amator’ meaning ‘lover’, literally doing something for the love of it as opposed to doing something for the financial return.
This set of images was created over a period of 10 weeks as I followed amateur MMA fighter, Shaun Hampton, as he trained to defend his British amateur FCC light-heavyweight title. Shaun eventually lost the fight (on points after a grueling 5 rounds) but was back in training a few days after.