There’s a distinct sense of vulnerability in the work of photographer Ryan James Caruthers. His images delicately examine modern masculinity, and it’s inherent links to athleticism and homosexuality.

Caruthers’ series Tryouts, won him The BJP Breakthrough award, and explores men and their relationship to sport. The photographs consist of portraits that show a softer version of athletes and sporting equipment, documenting scenarios in a muted, earthly palette, under natural, filtered sunlight. Instead of toned, muscular sportsmen, Caruthers’ subjects are lean, unconventional and vulnerable and appear to be caught in either a moment of thought, intimacy or despair. Despite this, the images lack any intentional emotion, instead offering an underlying presence of sensuality that seems to pulsate from their very core. The works are voyeuristic in a way, firmly positioning the viewer as just that, and creating a feeling that a personal moment of reflection or intimacy has secretly been witnessed. It’s Caruthers’ ability to capture this intimacy, sensuality and thought while still remaining quite removed, that makes his images so compelling to look at.

Caruthers’ a recent graduate, however began shooting from an early age. This commitment to his craft over the years has seen a strong eye develop as well as a swift rise in his career. With stints for Dazed, Coeval, FY! and New York Magazine, as well as his own personal projects and exhibitions, you can expect much more from this up and coming talent.