Matt Cottis and Dylan Collard: Twelfth Man

Work / Photography

Local sports with local people: beautiful photography from the Twelfth Man project

Sport is probably one of the most distinctly human quirks; an inherently competitive and, in many ways, aggressive pastime that somehow manages to bring large communities of people together to revel in spectacle and, on a simpler level, just enjoy each other’s company. Given the imminent arrival of the Olympics on our home turf it’s becoming increasingly easy to forget about the convivial side to competitive events, what with the growing length of journeys to work and the constant references to the games in conjunction with riots in the media.

Thankfully not everyone has lost track of the real reason why we love sports as much as we do. Twelth Man is a photographic project by Dylan Collard and Matt Cottis that seeks to explore the various ways in which the people of London engage with community sports. From cricket in Kennington to morning swimming in the Serpentine, Londoners have a multitude of sporting rituals that exist in tandem with, yet separate to, the regular flow of their daily lives; brought together by their mutual passions in a way no other shared pastime would allow. A beautifully contemplative series that’s inspirational in a totally different way to the hardcore patriotism that awaits us in a few weeks’ time.


Twelfth Man: Serpentine Swimmers


Twelfth Man: Serpentine Swimmers


Twelfth Man: Serpentine Swimmers


Twelfth Man: Skatepark at Kennington


Twelfth Man: Baseball at the Barbican


Twelfth Man: Kennington Cricket


Twelfth Man: Kennington Cricket