My man, Steve Storey, recently tested new bike from Knolly. He also tagged me along for some pictures and one of the images has been used in their advertising as well.
One of my favourite pictures from Della Creek trip is an opening image for a feature story on riding in Llilooet in current issue of Mountain Life magazine. Rider Steve Storey made sure I am completely covered in dust by end of the shoot.
So excited to finally see this image in print. Steve and I have been going back to this spot for a few times just to get the right conditions and it finally paid off. Thanks to Coast Mountain Culture Magazine for publishing this picture as one page in their photo gallery.
A quick flashback to our trip to Honduras couple years ago. This picture of Steve Storey and Denis Courchesne searching for new trails in Central America ended up as a double spread in May issue of Czech Velo magazine.
Steve and I were on assigment photographing the new Endorphin 27.5 for Knolly bikes. The Endorphin has been on trails since 2009 and the new version of it just hit the stores. We both sat down and wrote ideas for the shoot. Two days covering various trails in Whistler, including bike park. We made sure Steve would ride it in every possible scenerio – smooth flowy trails, technical climbs and descents, roots, rocks, loam, xc race. Once we did that we decided to step it up and take it to the Whistler bike park to push it’s limits.
“The bike rips and is capable of so much more than the traditional definition of a trail bike. It descends as well as and climbs better than the old version. They retained the fun ride qualities the past Endorphin had and even managed to lose a small amount of weight in it’s transformation. If you’re looking for a trail bike that can hold it’s own on the downhills or if you liked the last edition and are looking to upgrade, this is your bike. ” – Steve Storey
What an awesome event for women! I only heard of it when I was asked to document the event for Tourism Whistler. Mudderella, designed by women, is 5-7 mile long muddy obstacle course for women. It is not a race, it is an awesome adventure with your female friends. It was amazing to experience it from behind the lens – seen the courage, support, laugh, togetherness, struggle, fun, strength – it was all there in every team. And living up to its name, Whistler weather added lots of natural mud with rain and sun mixing it up during the event.
At the beginning of the bike season I was contacted by Whistler bike park to photograph Phat Wednesday race for future marketing use. Phat Wednesday DH race series is a very popular and very competitive race happening on most Wednesdays. The race is open to anyone and it is more competitive than some of the more known races in Canada or in the world. You get to race against big names like Chris Kovarik, Claire Buchar, Illes brothers, and these days Troy Brosnan as well, just to name a few. It is run by Whistler Blackcomb event department and those guys are doing an amazing job week after week.
Getting into a photo shoot, I knew I will have to deal with mid day sun, probably the worst enemy for a photographer. To get the right shots, I had to look for open spaces to be able to capture the speed while battling the heat and dusty conditions. With Phat Wednesday actually happening that day we also had to deal with racers training during the day. After getting the action photos, the client also wanted a picture of GLC and atmosphere during Awards later in the evening. I found a great angle to show the new GLC patio with bike racks as well, the only thing that was missing was the sun which set behind the clouds. The difference between the sunny and cloudy shot would be huge so I talked to my client and I was able to reschedule the shoot and wait for the right conditions. Sitting on GLC patio myself during summer, I wanted to capture what I feel. Cool and chilled atmosphere after day of riding, enjoying the last ray of sun while sipping my favourite drink with my friends.
The feeling never gets old. It’s like getting your favourite candy as a kid. Actually, it’s like getting a lifetime supply of it! Every time someone sends us a message that we have been published in Bike I feel that exact way. I get so excited and can’t wait to get my hands on a copy. The guys at Bike do things a bit differently. They never tell you ahead of time when you’re going to have a picture published so when you flip the pages and you see your picture there, it’s always a treat.
This picture is from a November trip to Slovakia to see my family. Since Steve was coming as well, we packed the bikes so we could try and fit in some riding and shooting. With only 5 days to ride and explore the trails around my hometown, Martin, there was no time for Steve to recover from jet lag making for some grueling days. I had arrived 2 weeks earlier and had time to settle in but even I still felt the effects. We’re both very driven when it comes to shooting so 10 hours after Steve had arrived, we were already out on the bikes searching out spots to photograph.
The hike-a-bike is mandatory on almost every ride in Slovakia. Most trails have no access other than walking up what you’ll be riding down. It was during one of these torture fests when we noticed a line far off in the woods covered in deep, red leaves. The leaves were so deep in places it was past our waists. As much fun as it was there was also an element of nervousness since you couldn’t tell if there were any giant rocks or fallen trees underneath it waiting to grab your tire and smash your face. Luckily, nothing was grabbed or smashed and we ended up with some photos we were both happy about.
I recently came across an online magazine dedicated to female mountain bikers called Mountain Bike For Her. After reading through the pages I found myself drawn in to many of the articles. Features on becoming stronger on your bike and how to move past fears and conquer them touched on subjects I think about quite often. I instantly became hooked and ended up reading the whole publication front to back. The next day I contacted the publisher of Mountain Bike for Her and we started to talk about the next issue and what she was working on.
The latest issue focuses on female coaches and bike camps for women only. From my own experience, I can tell you that investing into a weekend camp or a few lessons will save you lots of frustration and maybe even some tears. Attending a couple of Dirt Series camps really helped me to improve my skills and conquer those fears. I remember the first time I rode the Whistler Bike Park and I told myself I don’t ever need to do jumps or drops. I simply thought I didn’t like to be in the air. Turns outs that second or two in the air is actually pretty cool, it is the landing that freaks me out. I signed up for the beginner class for drops and jumps and was amazed by the support I received from the coaches and other participants. I was able to overcome that fear of not landing with the skill set I learned from my coaches. I am still successful at avoiding the bigger jumps and drops in the park but I now actually enjoy a few of the airs in the bike park. I make sure to hit them pretty much every day I go there which is a massive step forward from the day I first saw them.
I am very excited to see this picture published. Lisa Mason from Women’s Freeride Movement and Veronika Voracek are awesome local shredders showing the girls that anything is possible. Besides their great personalities they are also coaching and sharing their knowledge with Dirt Series Mountain Bike Camps.
This picture was taken during the photo shoot for Dirt Series to create marketing and promotional images for their women only mountain bike camps.