Winter Photo Projects

In a year filled with cancelled races and having recently switched over to stills photography (from motion), there was a lot for me to learn and practice over the winter months. Several things I had never attempted before in photography such as working with strobes, compositing in Photoshop, or even directing people for portraits were all things I wanted to learn or improve on.

On my off days from work, I took the opportunity to do some reading and watch tutorials from online resources like Workphlo to learn some tricks to Photoshop and general product photography practices. The XXX shoes and RED crankset are two examples of what I had taken away from these resources. The product photos following those two are ones I did earlier in the year, shortly after I purchased my first speedlight. Just using the lighting knowledge I had an basic understanding of Photoshop, these were the results. Even with a few weeks of practice I feel like the images improved significantly, despite limited space and resources.

Since we are still in the midst of a pandemic, learning to shoot and light portraits is difficult. On certain off days I have been watching and learning from online resources and then using myself as a model to practice on. Jumping back and forth from in front of the camera, to behind it to review each shot is a more time consuming process. But time is something a lot of us have at the moment. Below are two examples of different styles I went for in my practices. One is high key, something I would enjoy doing for teams or riders looking for new sponsorship or to spice up their website. The other is more contrasty and stylized which could work for some brands.

When socializing becomes more normal, being able to practice directing people in front of the camera is the next skill I need to work on. If there are teams or riders out there who are interested in giving me the opportunity to work on that with them, I would be very much appreciate that!

Untitled photo

Lastly, a project that I had on my mind since I the beginning of the pandemic, was to attempt my own version of Brazo de Hierro's lockdown photos. He had such a great idea of displaying athletes in their own homes, training virtually for races that may never happen, only using the available light of the screens in front of them. The result, a moody, yet naturalistic depiction of these athletes isolated in their own homes.

I wondered how he had done this for the longest time since Spain was in full lockdown, but he actually instructed the riders or someone in their household over the phone, how to take the photos. The right settings, composition, everything done remotely, yet the results are stunning. Beautiful enough to earn accolades from the Mark Gunter awards.

To the left is my own attempt at this. I had a remote trigger on my phone which I set the camera off with but would need to hop off the bike to recompose. I'm happy with what I achieved, but would have liked to have more output from the monitors so I could have some greater contrast in the photo and more light on my skin.

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