Late last year Ride went to their contributors with the idea of shooting photos at a specific time to showcase just how much BMX is going on around the world at any given time. November 23rd at 1pm PST was go time and teams of riders, photographers and filmers from California to Spain all converged on that One Moment to collectively create something special. The article came out awesome and this video does well to show the anticipation, the build up and the payoff of one extraordinary moment in BMX.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
Find the skyway wheel in this photo and win a free Lumia…or not
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
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.
Another unplanned demo for Hoang tran grinding with his crank this very unique set up
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.
There are so many scooter in Saigon that during the rush hour you could be stuck in a scooter trafic jam !
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.
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.
Joris riding down the gipsy wall…
Hoang riding up the gipsy wall
And the gipsy wall say « CAM ON »…meaning thank you in vietnamese
And one ! One more convinced by the coolitude of a bmx bike.
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.
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.
The best noodle restaurant, right in front of the place we were staying !
The Streets are talking english in Saigon, thanks to this man : Isaac Clarcke, much more nicer than he looks on this photograph.
Vietnam from above, feat the infamous mekong river
After breaking another flat curb, Joris takes a breather in this very humid and hot climate.
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.
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.
Sad news from the print world today as it becomes official that Factory Media has closed all of its magazine titles, which includes RideUK. Though there will be no more physical copies, they’ve been adamant to say it will live on digitally, but its not clear what that means just yet. Take a stroll down memory lane and check out 23mag.com‘s archive of 20+ years of RideUK covers and contents.
As a BMX photographer, theres a moment when a spark ignites; when you see someone start to try something and you know it could make a good photo. The gears in your head start ramping up and you start looking at the angles, the light, the variables… anything that stands between you and making a great image. This write-up will give you an idea of what goes through my head while setting up a photo, in this case a long ass icepick by Jake Seeley. Continue reading →
Go behind the scenes with Alex Coleborn and photographer Dean Smith as they shoot a handful of photos at the Adrenaline Alley skatepark. If you’re gonna be shooting indoors a bunch this winter, you’ll probably be able to pick up a few flash/ambient mixing pointers by watching this.
Filmer Matty Lambert got his hands on the new Panasonic GH4 and despite having a broken leg, went out with Paul Ryan to film some 4K test clips. If you’re a camera nerd, you can also have a look at a little blog post he put together and be on the look out for a slow-mo comparison test with the Sony FS700.
I’m not really sure who the intended audience of this mini “documentary” actually is, but it gives you a little behind the scenes look at what its like to be a BMX photographer/filmer. Despite being severely cringeworthy at several points, there are a few bits of good information sprinkled throughout. If you’re an aspiring lensman, check out the video and read below for a little friendly advice of my own.
I’ve only been in the game for a few years now and some could make the argument that I’m no more qualified to offer advice on this subject than the people in this video, but I couldn’t just have you guys ingesting a bunch of vague pointers. In my years of paying dues and finally getting my foot and my camera bag in the door of the BMX industry, this is the best advice I could give you if you’re looking to do the same.
-Do it for the right reasons.
I feel like I read this in every interview with any BMX photographer ever, but if you’re trying to make a million dollars from shooting/filming BMX, go to the nearest pawn shop and sell all your shit because its not going to happen. Shooting BMX should be, above all else, a labor of love. You should love this shit so much to begin with that getting paid for it shouldn’t matter until you can do what you do with one arm tied behind your back and security breathing down your neck. If you get no genuine thrill from pedaling miles on end while lugging a 50lb camera bag, you’re in the wrong business, friend.
-Know your craft.
This goes beyond reading your camera’s manual cover to cover and knowing what every function does. This is about shooting so many photos or filming so many clips that you can see what its going to look like before you even pull the camera out. This is about closing the gap between what your photos/footage looks like and what you want your stuff to look like. Not by going out and buying a bunch of expensive gear, but by knowing how to squeeze every ounce of capability out of the tools and the light you’re given. Some of the best advice I’ve ever come across is, don’t practice til you get it right, practice til you can’t get it wrong.
-Its not about gear.
As much as you think having a VX1k, 1Dx and Einsteins or a Panasonic with the whale eye will miraculously make your shit look like Jeff Z or Navaz’s, you’re sadly mistaken. Unless you’ve got tens of thousands of dollars to run through B&H like Supermarket Sweep, you should be more worried about doing what you can with what you have instead of worrying about what you could do with what you don’t. Always try to keep in mind that there’s someone out there doing better with less.
-Be your own worst critic, not your number one fan.
No one likes a dude who’s feeling himself to the max. And its even worse when their photos/filming aren’t quite up to par. If you somehow think you’ve arrived or are more worried about your Instagram followers than continually improving the quality of your work, you’re doing yourself a huge disservice and you probably look like a douchebag. Don’t buy into your friends telling you you’re the shit, you gotta see the things that you could’ve done better. Its easy to let a hundred likes go to your head, but if you think that shit matters in real life, I honestly feel bad for you.
-Network, network, network.
Social media has made it easier than ever to meet and communicate with riders from your town all the way up to your favorite pros. In most industries, networking is a bunch of shaking hands and trading business cards, but in BMX it can be anything as simple as saying “whats up, let’s shoot sometime” on Instagram to just sharing a blunt at the skatepark. But be cautious of your hunger level when it comes to stuff like this though, most people can spot a weirdo from a mile away. Which brings us to our next topic…
-Don’t be a weirdo.
In the modern BMX climate, you might be surprised how far being a normal, level-headed person could take you. You could shoot the best photos ever, film the crispiest clips, but if you’re a pain in the ass, next to no one is going to want to deal with you. Don’t be the guy poaching photos/clips of people you don’t know at the skatepark. Don’t be the guy bugging your one and only local pro to shoot on every social network every day. Just try not to be “that guy”.
-Do good work and things will happen.
Same as when it comes to riding, the longer you’re out there doing you and making it look good, people will eventually notice. There’s no better feeling than being the go-to guy for riders or companies, but the only way to get there is to be consistently dialed and reliable. As soon as you start wondering why you’re not getting the recognition you deserve or why people aren’t fucking with you, your mind is in the wrong place and you should stop and re-evaluate why you’re doing what you’re doing. You shouldn’t have to speak for your work, your work should speak for you.