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Articles Danny Lenihan, Founder & CEO of 3 Legged Thing

Published on July 12th, 2018 | by Alison Barclay


Happy 8th Birthday to Us!

3 Legged Thing is celebrating 8 years since its formation in 2010. To celebrate, we decided to put founder and CEO, Danny Lenihan, in the hot seat. Below Danny answers questions on some of 3LT’s finest moments, and shares some fun memories of his photography.

What was the best piece of business advice you’ve been given?

DL: “Honestly, I’ve been mentored by so many people from different brands since I started this company that it’s difficult to isolate one particular piece of advice, but the consistent message I get from friends and business associates is “don’t compromise you”. I think a big part of the success of 3LT is that, as a collective, we’ve always done things that excite us in our own way. We’ve always been accessible, and personable, and we’ve always tried to be “people” rather than “corporate”. The wider photographic community (I think) sees that we are individuals working together, rather than a brand identity stifling the passions, creativity and enthusiasm of staff. My team feel like they are part of something. I don’t think any of them see their positions with the organisation as a “job”, but rather more a career in an exciting young company that is breaking the boundaries of camera support technology and design.”

What is your favourite thing about the photography industry?

DL: “My favourite thing about this industry is that, with very few exceptions, ours is a very small community and we all have a great deal of respect for each other. I have many friends that work for competitors, and have made a lot of friends travelling the world and exhibiting at trade events. This is a brilliant industry, and everyone wants to see it succeed. There’s very little ill-will between competing elements, in my experience, and whilst the odd one or two trash the competition, this isn’t indicative of the wider community.”

What product are you most proud of and why?

DL: “I’m probably most proud of a product that we currently have in development, so can’t give too much away there, but in terms of what we currently have available I would have to say the Leo tripod is probably our greatest achievement. It was trashed in an early review, but the photographic community rallied and defended our products in what can conceivably be construed as the most disingenuous and biased review of any product ever. A year after that review the Leo tripod won Tripod of the Year at the prestigious Lucie Technical Awards, for its outstanding design and technical capabilities. Boom.”

Danny Lenihan accepts the Lucie Technical Award for Tripod of the Year 2017 for 3 Legged Thing Equinox Leo


Is there something you’d like to invent that’s pretty much impossible? What is it?

DL: “There’s no such thing as impossible. Only a lack of available technology or scientific understanding to achieve the dream.

“But, given the fanciful nature of the question, I’d have to say from the very first moment Ignotus Peverell introduced the world to invisibility cloaks, I profess I have wanted one, if only so that I could buy tragic albums without the humiliation of being identified.”

What’s the best photograph you have ever taken?

DL: “Christ, that’s a difficult one. As one of the most mediocre photographers on the planet, it’s difficult to isolate anything exceptional, but in the interests of answering this, I think the best photograph I have ever taken was at a Livingston gig in Hamburg, Germany. Many years ago I used to manage the band, so to get the opportunity to shoot them years later was too good to refuse. I got a wonderful photo really low down across the stage that I have always loved. And will never be able to replicate.”

Livingston photographed by Danny Lenihan


What is your go-to fancy dress costume?

DL: “My friend Phil, and I, attended a fancy dress party as Wayne and Garth, to sustained applause by the other attendees. It’s uncanny. It also spawned my alter ego, Danny Darkside, who has featured in many a 3LT product video for the sheer sake of stupidity.”

Phil and Danny Lenihan in their Wayne's World fancy dress costumes.


What was your best or worst celeb encounter as a photographer?

DL: “I was photographing The Darkness a couple of years back, when I asked the guys if we could do something a little different. “How about I punch you in the face for a selfie?” came the immediate response from Dan Hawkins. And a brilliant picture it was too.

Dan Hawkins punches Danny Lenihan for selfie

“A year prior to this I was doing some BTS for Kerrang! Magazine at the Kerrang! Awards, with my friend and brilliant photographer, Paul Harries. During a particular part of the shoot, Marc Hoppus from Blink 182 asked me if I’d like him to photograph me, photographing Paul Harries, photographing Biffi Clyro. We did, and the space-time continuum collapsed.

Danny Lenihan taking a photo of Paul Harries taking a photo of Biffy Clyro. Photo by Marc Hoppus of Blink 182.

“Then there was that time when Alice Cooper strangled his girlfriend…”

Alice Cooper and girlfriend. Photo by Danny Lenihan.

What is the one question you’ve never been asked, but would like to be?

DL: “What is your greatest achievement. The answer is my kids. They will always be the things I am most proud of, despite only having two legs…”

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