Today we’d like to introduce you to Michael Lark.
Michael, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I grew up in Dallas, Texas. I have a bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus in Bussiness Management and Information Systems and a Master’s in Public Administration.
In 2013, I began building my personal brand on social media (Twitter/Instagram) as a go-to for news, rumors, insights, and commentary on the Dallas Mavericks and Dallas Cowboys, as well as other professional sports, teams, and players. MavsFanatic.com brought me on as a staff writer and social media coordinator in May 2014, partnering with Ryan Wilson as co-owner of the site. Together we built a powerhouse team of writers, reporters, designers, podcasters, photographers, and videographers.
In the summer of 2017, Mavs Fanatic transformed into Dallas Sports Fanatic, a credentialed media organization covering all Dallas-area college and professional sports, including the Dallas Mavericks, Dallas Stars, Texas Rangers, Dallas Wings, FC Dallas, Texas Legends, Texas Revolution, Dallas Rattlers, and the University of Texas at Arlington, University of North Texas, SMU and TCU football and basketball. In just over a year and a half, we became credentialed covering over 15 different teams in addition to several different events. DSF also provides coverage of the Dallas Cowboys.
In the summer of 2017, I also started my own freelance company, Michael Lark Photography, where I specialize in sports and entertainment photography, digital media and video production.
As a freelancer, I’ve covered the 2017 Byron Nelson, 2017 Colonial Invitational, 2018 Cotton Bowl, 2018 MLB All-Star Game, and 2018 NFL Draft. I served as a photographer and social media manager for Star Sports Tours, the official travel partner of the Dallas Cowboys for two years. I have freelanced for media outlets such as Dallas Weekly, Blitz Weekly, News4UsOnline, fi360News, Star Sports Tours, Cowboys Experience, and D201TV. Currently, I serve as the lead photographer for Cowboys Experience.
I’ve shot several charity events including Dirk Nowitzki’s Hero’s Celebrity Baseball Game, Ron Spring’s Brotherhood 4 Good, and Dallas Cowboys’ Travis Frederick’s Blocking Out Hunger Foundation. I’ve conducted over 100 private photoshoots and have even shot with NBA and NFL players, Dallas Mavericks Dancers and Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, as well as private portrait shoots, live events, and weddings. In 2019, I served as the official photographer for the Dallas Sidekicks, Dallas Sidekicks Dancers, and Allen Ice Angels. Additionally, I shot the swimsuit calendars for the 2019 Dallas Sidekicks Dancers and the 2019 Allen Ice Angels. In April 2019, I became sole owner and CEO of Dallas Sports Fanatic.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Realistically, everything is a challenge, each in every day. When I first got into sports media back in 2016, I was more of a writer, by shortly after I began to realize my passion lied in sports photography. I essentially had to re-invent my identity and skills on the fly while entering a new field.
In addition to owning two businesses, I also have a full-time 9-5 job like most people, so juggling everyday life can sometimes be a challenge. A wise man once told me, “you always have time for the things that are important.” So, for me, it’s all about organization and prioritization. You can only do what you can do and then you just let God take care of the rest.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
I am known for my company Dallas Sports Fanatic, a credentialed media organization covering all Dallas-area college and professional sports, as an owner and CEO, as well as the owner of Michael Lark Photography. I have worked closely with several companies, athletes and professional dancers. Being in the sports and entertainment industry since 2015, I am most proud of the relationships I have developed and the reputation it has given me. As a working professional, it’s was a key facet that I didn’t fully understand early on. Being a natural-born introvert, I was used to working independently, hoping others would see the work I was doing. As I broke out of my social shell, I begin to understand the importance and more importantly, enjoy working with others. Today, I understand that it’s not what you do, but who you do it with.
What were you like growing up?
Growing up, I was a hard worker, but I kind of always have been. My mother raised me on strong, Christian values, but always allowed me to make my own decisions and make my own life, something I’m forever grateful for. She always provided, always worked hard, and never complained. Those are the same principles I carry out today in my own life. I was raised to work hard, be faithful and let God control the rest. To me, everyone works hard, but it’s the people that have an extreme desire to be great that go the extra mile. It’s the people that are up at 6 am and don’t go to sleep until 3 am that are actually willing to put in the extra work while everyone else is sleeping. That’s why I love when people sleep on me because while their sleeping, I’m working. I am humbled and blessed to be where I am in life. I’ve had a lot of things go my way, but I also have had my share of bad luck as well. But where is see bad luck, God sees it as a different path. Sometimes, I’m not always able to see that clearly to later down the line but I strive to remain faithful in my purpose driven life.
- Website: michaellark.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/michael_lark
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Michaellarkphotography
- Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/michael_lark
Nick White, B ONeal Photography