In capturing only a fragment of a second, the best sports photography manages to encapsulate far greater passages of time within its frame. Taken 10 years ago today, what after Nevin Spence's tragic passing became the definitive image of his rugby career is one such instance.
There is something about the sight of the former Ulster centre head over heels, the faintest smile beginning to creep across his face, that encapsulates far more than the act of merely crossing a white line with a ball in hand, reflecting the combination of joy and almost reckless commitment with which Spence played the game.
The confluence of events that must come together for such a result are at odds so long, it constitutes a minor miracle.
Had Darren Cave not ruptured his hamstring against Treviso a month prior, Spence likely wouldn't have been in the team to face Bath that day.
And when Belfast airports closed thanks to snow on the eve of the game, it seemed that Ulster might not make it at all. Once they did, with the weather at The Rec no better, a postponement seemed inevitable.
Having somehow reached the point of the first whistle, the moment is further threatened by the usual vagaries of 15 men trying to do one thing while 15 others try and stop them. And then, of course, there is the photographer himself, in this case Presseye's Matt Mackey.
"So much could change about that picture, so much," agrees Mackey looking back.
"Going to that match, you have a lot of snow on the ground and that could easily have become a news story rather than a sports story.
"Looking through what I was taking that day, it's guys in Ulster jerseys and Bath jerseys sweeping snow from the stands just trying to get the game the go-ahead. The match shots, you'd think it was a glorious day because it ended up quite sunny.
"But I'd have been on the phone back to the picture desk or a sports desk going, 'here, this is an absolute disaster, this game might be off.' It's minus two degrees but the pitch has been cleared and the sun is shining, so people are looking at what you're sending, hearing that, and going 'aye, dead on.'
"The Rec is very tight, it's very compact and the dead ball area is next to nothing, not what we'd be used to at Ravenhill. I was sitting in the most extreme right corner and Nevin scored in the far left.
"That image was taken on a 400mm lens, it's fixed, there's no zoom in, there's no zoom out. It's like a set of binoculars in a way, that's the area you have to work within. If I had dropped the lens in anticipation of them coming over in front of me or under the posts, you'd miss it. Even the angle between the pads on the posts and the corner, that's a fairly acute little space in which all the action has to happen for the picture to work. Never mind that you're so far from it that someone could walk across the shot, medics, guys warming up, anyone, and then it's gone too.
"I suppose even myself as well, I started as a photographer in the Sunday Life at 16.
"I knew it was what I wanted to do, but if Darren Kidd doesn't give me that chance coming out of school to learn from him and learn from the job, then there's no way I'm there. In fact, I was probably only at the game because Darren wasn't able to be himself, so there's all these things that get me sat where I am, Nevin going over where he does, and it all comes together."
When Spence, along with his brother and father passed away after a farming accident in 2013, the photo took on a new poignancy, the enduring sporting image of a young man taken too soon.
"Any picture is evolving right up until the moment that you take it, and then, after you do, it goes off and does its own thing and that depends on how it's used," reflects Mackey.
"With the Ulster guys at pressers and things, they're always very accepting, I've found, of me trying to ply my trade while, essentially, promoting them plying theirs. There's a good rapport there usually.
"Nevin was one of those guys that was always very happy and very obliging but, to be honest, I would say he probably didn't really like having his picture taken. So to capture him doing something he loved then is different.
"And to do that in a way that people remember the picture, keeping that moment in their minds, it can become an almost marker in their life sort of thing.
"Especially when they pass on, the images are still there, there for the family, the friends, and the fans. It's just nice to have been able to, in my own way, have added to that portfolio."
An instance when an image says considerably more than 1,000 words.