Category Archives: Gear

Framework: Steven Hamilton and a Columbus Dumpster

hamilton dumpster to invert

From RideBMX Issue #204

May 23, 2014, Columbus, Ohio

Canon 1DsIII
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 lens @ 70mm
Canon 580EXII flash (zoom @ 35mm (?), 1/2 power)
Paul C. Buff Einstein 640w flash w/ 11″ reflector (probably @ 1/2 power (~1/2000 duration))
Pocket Wizards

1/250 @ f/11, ISO 100

A typical day of shooting with Steven involves picking him up with his bike, skateboard, thermos of coffee and backpack full of tools, hoodie and a TRV900. On this particular day, Shay Lashley and/or John Hughes were tagging along. Steven’s friend Rob met us at the spot- a small ditch in the corner of a vacant apartment complex parking lot. The goal was to film a few clips involving a shopping cart there but upon arrival, an upturned dumpster became the subject of focus. Well-versed in wallrides, Steven sessioned the shit out of the thing before I suggested we shoot a photo. I set up to shoot an x-up wallride with a standard 50mm lens. I put the Einstein to the right, just out of frame, and a Lumedyne 200w Action Pack to the left, sandwiching Steven in between.

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I was trying to work with the empty parking lot and lightposts but my composition ended up being pretty tired and boring. On top of that, it was so bright that I had to get my flashes closer to overpower the ambient light and reduce the motion blur. As per usual, Steven suggested I use a fisheye and for once I agreed with him.

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The shot definitely became less boring but the motion blur continued to be a problem even after closing down to f/11 from f/9. At this point, Steven was happy with the photo but I was not. In addition to my discontent, my Lumedyne battery died. I replaced it with a much less powerful 580EXII set on 1/2 power (~1/1600 duration). I asked if he could do a different trick and wait until the sun hid behind the clouds so that motion blur would be reduced. I also changed my angle so that he’d be moving toward the camera and not across the frame, effectively diminishing any possible motion blur issues. This is when we got the shot.

hamilton dumpster to invert

The Einstein is just out of frame to the right (you can kinda see the splash of light on the ground from it) about 6′ up and the 580EXII is just out of frame on the left, also 6′ high, simply to freeze his wheels a bit. At 100% you can see that there was still some unavoidable motion blur on his wheels, which were spinning super fast-

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So the table is looking dialed, à la Joe Rich, but this angle doesn’t convey the distance he was traveling out of the wallride. This one does-

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I used some heavy panning to sharpen his lateral movement but I must’ve had the 580 at full power because his front wheel is lit up but a blurry mess-

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Peep the bling tho.

ham dumpster 4 Shot it once natural light for shits and giggles.

“Glidecam BMX Tips” with Dalton Campbell

I’ve never used a Glidecam but I feel confident that I could now, thanks to this tutorial.

TCU TV – The Photographer’s Discussion

A while back, I had the chance to get a few established photographers in the industry together to talk shop. I had a loose list of topics we could hit and Jeremy had a list of his own. We didn’t get to hit nearly as many subjects as we would have liked to, but that’s usually how these things go. I think we did pretty well with the time allotted and we’re hoping that any aspiring lensmen will be enlightened by our discussion.

If there are any specific topics that you’d want us to hit for the next discussion, please leave them in a comment below.

1:09 – Jeremy Pavia introduction
2:47 – Chris Mortenson introduction
4:28 – Josh McElwee introduction
6:25 – Jeremy’s “Through The Lens” column from The Union
9:21 – “Film vs. Digital” (actually we discuss Dean Collins and teaching for a while)
11:22 – We actually start discussing the film versus digital thing
13:26 – Shoutout to the darkroom
18:53 – What’s your favorite f/stop?
21:31 – “I just wanna capture the moment and sometimes the moment is shitty”
23:00 – No more hanging posters
24:11 – “Print vs. Online”
25:08 – Gregory Crewdson
28:48 – Readership
30:16 – Vinyl vs. MP3
30:55 – The Albion
31:55 – Props on VHS
36:04 – Josh’s story
37:45 – DIG/Focal Point
40:57 – A watered-down industry
43:35 – The process of shooting/choosing what gear to carry
46:13 – Getting the shot
49:22 – Fuck barspins.
50:35 – A collaboration between photographer and subject
55:19 – Riders getting hurt while shooting
57:01 – Shoutout to Kiraly
58:34 – RideBMX‘s 1 o’clock photo project
1:04:19 – Let’s talk about gear
1:08:57 – Advances in photo technology
1:12:25 – How to get your photos noticed
1:13:44 – Looking outside of BMX
1:15:43 – Experience
1:17:14 – Final thoughts and comments

“Back to Vietnam” by Hadrien Picard

A couple weeks ago, Hadrien Picard dropped his latest Nokia Pureviews project chronocling a trip [back] to Vietnam with Hoang Tran and Joris Coulomb. In addition to video, Hadrien also shot a ton of stills and put a bunch of the best ones together for us. This gallery, shot entirely on Nokia Lumia phones, came out awesome and does well to show what an amazing cultural experience this was. All of these photos are available wallpaper sized as well.

Honestly who is better at rail ride than Joris these days ? See this little bus out as a warm up for his so hard 36 out to be seen in the video.
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Joris and Hoang combined are probably the best duo of Hair cut on the market, here they come at the back of the jeep on the way to the dunes of Mui Né.
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This is for this kind of moment that we organise such trip to far away destinations, and this is for this kind of clips that we thank bmx everyday to make us enjoy that : the only concrete ramp in vietnam, a diy medium lost in a garden of Mui Né beach resort.
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As the wet season was not completely over yet, we enjoyed a couple of heavy rain shower, litterally shower, warm and quick that transformed all the scooter people in colorful moving plastic thing.
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The jam took place at an outdoor bar called « Saigon Outkast », with a tight and sketchy mini that opened the skin of Joris and offered him a ride to the hospital…which was separated between locals and foreigners.. Weird…but maybe for the best when we remember jors wound infection in Estonia some year ago.
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I personnaly can’t imagine going to such destinations and not sharing any session or time with the rare local bmxer, so instead of just riding exotic spots and move away without a sign, we organised a jam on street spots we made built for this occasion (a curb and a rail that would stay there)…And yeah, that was f… worth it. Saigon Rules
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Find the skyway wheel in this photo and win a free Lumia…or not
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The moderne Distric 7 of Saigon is a weird place, all clean, empty and quiet, like a abandonned California before an catastroph (ok i watch too many zombie movies) wich is completely fine with Hoang Tran clicking an invert
…in front of the security guy
…under the palm trees
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Where the favorite sport seems to be the DA CAU (some sort of badminton where you juggle a flying thing with your feet), a bmx attached to a scooter is probably a bit curious.
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Another unplanned demo for Hoang tran grinding with his crank this very unique set up
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Safety first ! or the irony of the vietnamese helmets that show perfectly the very laid back atmosphere of this country where riding a scooter can be so much fun.
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There are so many scooter in Saigon that during the rush hour you could be stuck in a scooter trafic jam !
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Riding bicycle during rush hour can be a little bit suffocating in such a big city…but from what we heard this mask are mostly used for girls to look more awesome…this is actually working pretty well with bmxer too.
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When you see hanging on the same wall Che Guevara and Vladimir Poutine, you can’t be surprise of seeing the father owning our RBnB flat coming back drunk every night hahaha. And joris to continue brushing his teeth.
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Joris riding down the gipsy wall…
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Hoang riding up the gipsy wall
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And the gipsy wall say « CAM ON »…meaning thank you in vietnamese
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And one ! One more convinced by the coolitude of a bmx bike.
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First Spot of the trip, a large barge where Hoang footplants in front of an massiv crowd stopped in the middle of the road, perfect protection from the traffic.
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Born in Saigon, raised in Usa, Hoang has brought back his smile and happy mind set to a country that is actually having the same friendly spirit.
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The best noodle restaurant, right in front of the place we were staying !
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The Streets are talking english in Saigon, thanks to this man : Isaac Clarcke, much more nicer than he looks on this photograph.
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Vietnam from above, feat the infamous mekong river
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After breaking another flat curb, Joris takes a breather in this very humid and hot climate.
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How cool this dude is, Joris, one of the most charismatic guy on the bmx scene…has even his own badge thanks to marie jade.
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At the end of the trip, we flipped a coin to decide if we would stay in Mui Né to visit the fantastic dunes or come back to Saigon to ride and film a perfect ledge ride set up…the coin said Saigon, we smiled…and stayed in Mui né. La vie est belle.
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Product Review: Yashica T4

t4

I wrote a review of this classic camera, check it out.

Photo of the Week: Timothy Burkhart

matt lough by timothy burkhart

“Sometimes all you need is a little bit of luck when it comes to photography. Usually you try to plan everything out to the last detail, but sometimes things go a little haywire and you scramble at the last second to pull it all together. That situation is exactly what happened when capturing this image of Matt Lough doing a ledge ride to drop in Joliet, IL while filming for his latest edit.

Matt and Anthony Loconte, hit me up when they were going to head out for a evening of filming about 35 minutes outside of Chicago; they had said there was a set up Matt wanted to hit up around golden hour. So, I had braved rush hour traffic and headed out to Joliet to meet up with them and we kind of just cruised around and played on some nibble spots while we waited for the light to be just right. Once we were ready we headed over the the set up, which was a pretty tight ledge ride to drop that went right into a busy street and down hill. So, we tried to figure out the angles for the video and where I can get a clear photo of everything and still be out of the way of the second video angle. I settled on a head on shot, since it flattened things out and I just liked the clean look of everything as well as the side lighting coming through from the sunset. The street where Matt would land into had tons of traffic and we had to wait for the right moment where the traffic lights synced up and he could get a go at it. I knew it would most likely be a one and done situation and I had to be ready. Myself and our friend Pat Richert were on traffic duty keeping an eye on everything and all of a sudden I glance up and Matt was heading down the ledge. I guess Pat had yelled and gave the OK to go and I hadn’t realized it, while still looking at traffic. So I pulled my camera up to my eye and tried to get everything composed and lined up to where I had wanted to have him on the ledge although he was already getting to the bottom of it and I just got to fire 2 quick shots. Magically on the second shot he was coming off the ledge and the brief second where his elongated shadow synced up with the overpass tunnel was captured. I had originally wanted Matt a bit further up on the ledge, and I was super upset at myself for practically missing the shot I wanted, which I wouldn’t get a second go at. Afterwards, some of the crew really digging the shadow image I kind of started to appreciate it more and more. It was all pretty serendipitous and there was something rewarding about scrambling and getting something probably a little better than what I had originally planned.

Nikon D800
NIkon 50mm 1.8 AF (Old Version)
1/800
f / 5.0
ISO 1600″

Timothy Burkhart portfolio

Photo of the Week: Brant Moore

brant moore potw

The photo this week comes from a set of pipes in the ceiling at Ray’s Skatepark where Thriller BMX‘s Sponge finds a snug toothpick stall.

“The idea for this photo originally came during filming for the odd couple video contest. Hollywood told Sponge and I about an idea he had given to one of the other dudes on another team and we kinda left it at that. Then this past Sunday we noticed the setup while riding and talked about how it really didn’t look like it would be too bad to get done. I don’t have two front pegs so this one was all Sponge’s.
Shooting the photo was pretty fun too. I had to stand against a wall on the deck of a quarter that was only about 6 inches, then hang onto some nails that we’re sticking out of a board bolted to the wall. My girlfriend Victoria held the flash for me and I snapped a couple test shots as Sponge attempted the trick. We moved around a bit until I was satisfied with the angle and lighting. The second to last photo was good enough but he hadn’t pulled the trick yet so I tried another angle on the next attempt and it turned out to be a winner. He pulled the trick and the photo came out perfectly. I don’t normally like to shoot photos where you can’t fully see the riders face but this was one of those occasions where the angle to see his face wouldn’t have done any justice to how awesome the trick and setup really are.

Panasonic GH4
Rokinon 7.5mm @ F/3.5
Lumopro Flash with Cactus Receiver
Flash Set At 1/64
SS – 1/100
WB – Flash
ISO – 800″