“I really can’t tell you why I’ve done as well as I did. I had a real passion for photography and I was a rabid sports fan. Why I was good at it, I don’t know. I worked very hard. I’m not modest about this when I say it, but I don’t think I’m particularly gifted; I think I had to work twice as hard. But the end result is what pays off. ... The way you look at sports photographers, or certainly the way I have always looked at them, is the difference between the really good ones and just the average shooter is that you have to be very lucky, and again that sounds modest, but again you do have to be in the right seat. When you’re in the right seat and in the right place at the right time, a really good photographer doesn’t miss, and I guess if you wanted to summarize why I’ve been successful -- I haven’t missed a lot when I’ve been lucky.” - Neil Leifer
Read Sports Illustrated's Longform on Neil Leifer here.