Voyage of Re-Discovery MBUK feature with Chris Smith

 To sell our photographs we realised we needed to think outside the box, set our own style and run with it. It’s too easy nowadays to take ‘influences’ from all the other great photographers out there and start taking photos that have been seen before. This is how we went out about this photo-shoot with Chris Smith. He came to us with the idea of riding his country country specific bike across terrain that he would use a much heavier duty machine on. Proving that with technology nowadays you really do only need one bike to ‘do it all’.

 We set out to take bright, sunny, Californian skate-style photography. We had a 35 degree centigrade, bright, cloudless sunny day to work with. Weather really makes a difference to a photographers day, it can make or break a photo-shoot and it certainly made this one. So the heavily stylised idea we started out with meant that we required lens flare, shallow shadows, deep yellows and heavy orange. To create this style Fin made sure he was always shooting into the sun, with lens flare making an appearance in nearly every photo. We also used small amounts of portable flash to highlight Chris’ face and body, this is because when shooting into the sun, the shadows are facing you, meaning that you lose detail in crucial places. A combination of flash and reflectors helped bring out his facial expressions and give the whole photograph and much brighter look.

The beauty of working with the Dedicated high speed portable flashes we use is, the speed and versatility of being able to fire them off from great distance and put them absolutely anywhere needed. They’re invaluable to us. It enables us to light subjects in pretty much any location and create a studio style photograph despite the contributing factors of light, weather, location or background. Its Fins vast experience of lighting which can help us set our photography aside from the rest and turn a quick snap into a work of art.

 This article was published in issue 285 of Mountain Biking UK, the worlds best selling mountain bike magazine. We were really pleased with how the shots came out from this shoot so it is always great to have the photos on paper and know that they will be enjoyed by others across the world.


MBUK Jan2013_285 Mag Chris Smith_Jack Gear Friction