“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 50mm 1.8 AF (Old Version)
f / 5.0
Timothy Burkhart portfolio
I chose this photo because of the simplicity- blue sky, white puffy clouds, a good balance of ground and water in the composition. The position of the riders arms resembles a bird taking flight and the wide open framing allows for a dramatic proportion between the world and its possibilities.
“Last year was a busy one for me in Chicago and I had the opportunity to shoot with some amazing riders through Brian Kachinsky and the Bakery. It was a bit surreal at times shooting photos with people from all over the world and it was definitely a new experience for me and something I wasn’t accustomed to. During the summer we had Matthias Dandois come to town for a whole week to film for his Bakery edit as well as just spend some time in Chicago.
One afternoon during Matthias’ visit the Bakery crew and friends all met up at the 31st street skatepark on the south side of the city to take a break from being cooped up inside filming. I remember it being a really hot and muggy Chicago summer day and not being too prime for riding. After cruising the park for around an hour everyone headed toward the lakefront to scope out some ledges, but no one was too motivated to ride em’ as the sun was a bit draining.
I noticed Matthias busting out some flatland moves while most of us were sitting around bullshitting and chugging sports drinks and eating slushies trying to stay cool. Just at that moment there were some big clouds that blocked out the sun and were lingering over the water. They provided this great blue hue over everything and the lighting on the water looked crazy from the reflection of the clouds. I thought it would be great to get an almost silhouetted photo of Matthias riding with the water as a backdrop, so I asked if he would do some links by the water. He just did his thing freely and I snapped some photos from a distance just waiting for everything to line up perfectly. He made me so nervous with how close he was getting to the edge of the walkway, but he has some insane bike control and probably didn’t think twice about almost falling in the water. It was just a super casual moment that turned into a great photo opportunity.
Nikon 70-210 f/4 AF
Shot at 70mm
Post processing in Photoshop CS6”
See more of Timothy’s work here. More of Matthias’ riding can be seen here.
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I chose this photo because of the alternate angle and the lighting. The fisheye from above accentuates the pipe as a potential danger in the situation and you can tell how close he actually came to hitting it. The lighting is optimal and was achieved using only two flashes. Sometimes the key to a successful photograph is just finding an unusual angle.
“This photo is of one of good friends from here in Chicago, Ryan Wayne, doing a tight wall ride in Joliet, IL Ryan is someone that I ride with probably more than anyone else here in Chicago and we have been friends for a bit; despite that it seems like we don’t really shoot too many photos together, but recently we have been trying to be a bit more productive with our sessions.
We shot this photo on a little late night street session in downtown Joliet, IL riding with Anthony Loconte and Chris Zidek. Joliet is about an hour southwest of Chicago and is pretty much only known for it’s county jail and also the casino that is in the center of the whole town. It has a bit of a industrial era small town feel and is fairly deserted at night, which lets you pretty much ride whatever you want. We found this tight little wallride set up almost right out of the car, it wasn’t a super crazy set up, but was fun enough to play on. It was in a parking garage with really low ceilings and to make matters worse, on this particular wall there was a huge pipe hanging from the ceiling. Wallriding was a bit of a squeeze to say the least.
I set up two speedlights for the shot; I’ve been trying to dial back flash shooting lately and be more creative with one or two flashes opposed to using all three that I own for everything. I tried to shoot this with a 50mm while positioned lower to the ground first and get a more formal non distorted flattened out image, but it just looked too bland on this set up and didn’t really accentuate the low ceilings and the pipe hanging down. I threw on my 16mm fisheye and tried to workout a different angle, and had the idea I wanted to be above Ryan. I grabbed a garbage can that we found in the garage to give me a more bird’s eye perspective of the set up and I was wedged up against the ceiling while shooting. I positioned one flash at 1/2 power just out of frame on the bottom left of the image laying on the ground angled up at Ryan..pretty much right under him, then I had another on a tripod to the top left of the frame at full power to light the rest of the scene. It took a few attempts to get Ryan under the pipe without clipping his head, but after that we got a shot that we were both psyched on.
Zenitar 16mm f/2.8
2 Godox Propac PB820 Battery Packs
AlienBees Cyber Syncs
Post processing done in Photoshop CS6”
See more of Timothy’s work here.
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