Inside the Ropes by Richard Castka
Introduction of the Photographer
Richard Castka is a golf course and tournament photographer. Richard has been based in Hong Kong for more than 20 years and owns and operates the Sportpix International Photo Library, the largest independent golf archive in Asia.
Richard’s award-winning work takes him around the world each year to photograph exclusive golf resorts and also high profile golf tournaments. Richard is also commissioned to shoot major team competitions such as the Ryder Cup and the Presidents Cup. Clients include American Express, Barclays Capital, CNN, Omega, UBS, UPS, Volvo and many more.
The serene beauty of golfing landscapes can only be captured very early in the morning and very late in the afternoon when the light is at its very best, so early morning wake ups are a standard component of Richard’s job. Air pollution in the Asia region makes landscape photography a more challenging job than it is in other parts of the world, so planning and patience are necessary virtues.
In spite of photographing some of the world’s most famous golf courses Richard seldom has the opportunity to play them, although his claim to fame is to have played the world’s two most exclusive golf courses – Augusta National in the USA and Pyongyang Golf Club in North Korea!
Golf tournament photography requires an abundance of expensive, heavy equipment and the ability to carry and work with it for up to 10 hours per day while walking up to 15kms. Planning is once again a virtue as a wide selection of images is required from such events, and not just players swinging a golf club.
As the only photographer in the Asia-Pacific region with full photographic accreditation to the PGA European Tour, Richard has developed a comprehensive knowledge of the leading players and their likely reactions on the golf course, reactions which ultimately end up making the most interesting tournament images.
An edited selection of all images taken on all assignment are uploaded to the online Sportpix International Golf Photo Library from where international publishing clients are able to download high-resolution copies.