Tag Archives: Sunpak

Photo of the Week: Rudy Rodriquez

Aj bars

The first thing I noticed about this photo was the unique perspective – how Rudy chose to shoot from behind the ramp. If the rider hadn’t gotten high enough to clear that back railing, the shot would be a wash. Luckily the nicely lit barspin was thrown at a perfect height and this photograph was a success.

“Pretty much, this prefab park isn’t too far from where I’m now staying and is located in a parking lot of a cop station. I recently just started hanging out with A.j whose riding abilities are on another level. He got off at 8 pm and we met up at the cop station park & just did bikes on it. As usual, I got hyped at around 9:04 pm, before going to this other spot, when I saw him doing tucks & bars on the neat green little quarter pipe. Well crap at that point, my monkey instincts kicked in naturally & began noticing this tree I could climb like a damn ape that has been injected with heavy doses of caffeine. I originally was getting a snap of the tuck no-hands but he did this barspin, which caught me off guard, but was able to get lucky enough to snap this at a decent time or at least what I think is a decent time. I think my settings were ISO: 400, Shutter: 60, aperture: maybe 7.1 (p.c is acting up to get correct info.) Also, I’ve never owned a legitimate camera bag but hopefully one day that will change that I can get to experience that. And using a vivitar & sunpack off camera flash and still shooting with that canon t3 but i think maybe that might be changing soon.”

Check out more of Rudy’s work here.

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Photo of the Week: Jon Matalavage


What I like most about this photo is the lighting- a lot of times when shooting wallrides, the shadows created by flashes are very distracting and unpleasant. The best way to solve this is to put the light exactly perpendicular to the wall so that the shadow does not spread across the wall. Of course this is just a guideline and is not always going to create the best lighting- however in this case it worked like a charm. The addition of the flash from above makes an almost seamless rim light continuous with the flash on the left.

“I shot this photo of Jake Hanczar in State College PA, we were out pedaling around one night about 9:30pm trying to come up with a spot to shoot when I mentioned the curved wall. It has been a wall I’ve always wanted to shoot and not being able to think of an other spots we headed to the wall, Jake had never ridden this wall before but after a couple goes at it he had it unlocked.
It’s kind of a strange location because the wall is located down at basement level to the building it’s connected to, unfortunately for Jake this gave him very little run up for speed. Fortunately for me it allowed me to be above him at ground level to get the angle I wanted. I played around with different lighting a few times before getting it how I wanted. I placed one flash to the left of him in between the wall and the AC unit, the second flash is located right above Jake extended out on a tripod that I connected with a pallet that was laying around to keep the tripod from tipping over and falling off the wall. We were both stoked on how it turned out.

Canon 40D

Canon 50mm 1.8

1/250 @ f/4.0

ISO 500

2 Sunpak PZ42X (flash on the left @ 1/4 power, flash above @ 1/8 power)

2 Vello Freewave Fusion triggers”

Check out more of Jon’s work here.

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Photo of the Week: Van Charles

van charles potw

I found this photo after Van had entered a photo of himself in the bunnyhop photo contest, popping a stylish hop in the middle of a pristine, fragile-looking living room. I was intrigued and looked through some of his other work and found this. I thought it was funny and original and asked him about it.

“Damn. It’s been over four years since I shot this. The marks on the wall are long since gone, despite having persisted in randomly appearing briefly every now and then over the years. Riding in unusual places is something I’ve always enjoyed. Or maybe I just go crazy on rainy/freezing days. Self-shooting with a “stock10” timer is a fun challenge for me, it’s like, “Shit, what can I do, when I gotta do it, now.” I’ve done shots in my room, the living room, the basement, and here, the hallway. I tried setting up a shot for a cave-man into the stairs. Fell trying to get everything set up, so that idea died quickly.There’s a full series I’ve wanted to do, just never got around to finishing it. I probably should.

This was at 1/125, f/8 my gold standard back in the day. Iso was probably 100. The flashes were high left, low right, probably something like a 1/4 power Vivi285 and a 1/8 powerSun555, respectively. I had my 20D with a Tokina 10-17 + 1.4 tele-conv. at about 35mm, all said and done. This was a meager attempt at imitating film, something I love, respect, but can’t bring myself to have an ongoing relationship with; shoot me.”

Check out more of Van’s work here.

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Photo of the Week: Rudy Rodriquez

joe bolden

The first thing I noticed about this photo was the way the vertical lines are perfectly vertical. This is something I always try to achieve in my photographs. It is never actually necessary to do so, but in some fields of photography (especially architectural) you always want the verticals (of a building) to be straight up and down. It just looks so, so clean. Besides that, I liked the way the overpass cuts off the upper-right corner, containing the entire frame and not letting a white sky spill onto the background. The lighting is simple yet effective. The two red signs in the background are a nice touch of accent.

“I shot this photo of Joe Bolden doing edger foot jams on a windy cold Saturday. We met up with Houston street rider Brian Peters who then took us to this amazing spot under a freeway in Houston, TX. Btw, if any out of town riders are rolling through Houston & looking for street spots to ride, Brian Peters is your man. Back to the photo, we originally were here to get video street clips which we did but soon after busted out the photo camera to get some photos as well. Joe Bolden handles his street weapons with skill and fury and possess the ability to hurl edger foot jammers into objects, impale them on sharp objects or throw them off ledges. Other than it being unbelievably windy this day and the strong wind knocking over one of my flashes and breaking it, we had no hassles by any one. Anytime you have a Saturday of bicycles, coffee and friends, its sure to be a great day.

Camera: Canon EOS Rebel T3
Exposure: 0.01 sec (1/100)
Aperture: f/3.5
ISO Speed: 200
Flash: Sunpak & Vivitar 28FD (courtesy of Zipps. I still have it dude!)”

Check out more of Rudy’s work here.

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Photo of the Week: Ryan Ogawa

chad osburn by ryan ogawa

February in a bike shop here in central California is typically a slow time of year. On this day in 2012 Chad Osburn and myself took an extended lunch to ride Chad’s Alma Matter. After shooting a few other shots digi around the school, we stumbled on these rails. I knew this would make for a good medium format shot, due to the ambiance and timeless, reckless, high school feel. What obviously added to the difficulty, was trying to avoid the snack bar counter, but he ended up sliding a few nice slow cranks across the cool blue rail. I shot this packed up and back to the shop we went.
As far as flash setup, my memories a little foggy, but I believe I used two flashes – Sunpak 555 in the far back right approx. 8ft. back, and a Nikon SB-28 to the camera’s left facing Chad.
Camera: Hasselblad 500c/m with the 80mm 2.8
Shutter: 1/250
Aperture: f 5.6
Triggered with: Paul C. Buff’s Cybersync’s
Film: Kodak Ektar 100

Check out more of Ryan’s work here. See more of Chad’s riding here.

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Photo of the Week: Alex Herzog


What I like most about this photograph is the composition. There are a lot of geometric shapes and lines, from the brick bank he’s riding on to the windows and the slats in the wall. Then you have the rider disconnected from all of that, in the clear blue sky. It’s kind of metaphorical for the freedom BMX brings sometimes.

“Every photographer understands the sheer joy that comes out of the perfect pop-click-smack sound sequence that comes with shooting a bmx or skate photo. This photo of Terrence Webber absolutely roasting this Euro table at our local skatepark here in Foster City, CA is a prime example. There are tons of skateparks in the Bay Area, but this plaza at the local “teen center” as it is called gets sessioned pretty regularly. The plaza has a few fun jibby ledges but I’ve never been fond of this quarter. It’s awkwardly shaped, with a tight transition on the bottom with basically a bank to finish off the top half. Virtually every trick that can be done on this quarter, has been done. But seeing as there isn’t another tranny for miles around, Terrence chose this oddly shaped one to get what will be his last ever bmx photo. Literally as I was writing this, I saw on his facebook that he just sold his bike and will be moving on to other things. So good luck bud!

Photo Info – 1/200 s Exposure
– Brand X speedlite on the ground to the bottom right of the frame set at a 24mm zoom and 1/2 power
-Old Sunpak speedlite on a lightstand to the upper left of the frame, set at full power”

More of Alex’s work can be seen here.

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Photo of the Week: Alex Jaquez

jaquez potw

You don’t need to be a photographer to appreciate the lighting in this photo. The twilight backdrop adds a beautiful, almost fake gradient that fades into the distant mountains. I am certain that this photo wouldn’t be as striking had it been midday. The flash placement inside the bowl corner is optimal to show where the rider is coming from and going to. The composition is super clean- a prime example of the rule of thirds. Not to mention that inverts pretty much cannot get any more inverted than this.

“On the day this photo was shot Tazz and I had made the short drive south from Albuquerque to Los Lunas to help dig at some backyard trails that were in the works. After digging at the rained out trails for a while, everyone was ready to get some riding in so we relocated to the small concrete park nearby.

We had a fun session and toward sunset Tazz and some of the Los Lunas locals were sessioning “the U-bowl”. It’s maybe seven feet deep with super mellow transitions and very little flat bottom. Tazz can shred anything you put in front of him so it didn’t take too long for him to start boosting some tricks out it.

I had recently bought a Nikon 70-200mm and right away I could tell this was a perfect opportunity to put it to use. The deck of U-bowl is elevated by about two feet from the rest of the park. This gave me the ability to get a lower angle,hide my light source in the middle of the frame and also put Tazz above the trees in the background. I put a Sunpak 522 and a Sunpak 120j mounted next to each other on a light stand in the flat bottom. The flash were set at 1/4 power and pointed up toward Tazz from underneath. There was also a Quantum Q-flash set to quarter 1/4 power on the deck to just out of the frame about four feet up. My D300 was set to f/4.8 and a shutter speed of 1/125 to try to catch some of the fading ambient light.

We snapped a few frames of good inverts but Tazz wasn’t satisfied. He says that the best way to get a clicked invert is shirtless so that you don’t catch your bars on it. So.. despite it being late January he took the shirt off and buzzed his tire on his bare shoulder a few times ’til we got one he was content with. That’s the sort of thing that makes Tazz my favorite dude shoot with-he’s always super stoked to ride and down put in a good time for a clip or photo, whether he’s in front of the lens or, much of the time behind it as well. Long live the juke life!”

Check out more of Alex’s work here.

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