I snapped this photo the other day as I was loading the bikes onto the back of my SUV and it’s quickly become one of my favorites. I don’t know why. There’s no staging involved, I didn’t mess with the crank arm angle (even though it’s close to where it should be anyway) or worry about where the valve stems are (they should be at 6 o’clock)… I just wheeled my bike out and was heading back with my wife’s bike when I looked and thought, “that might make a good picture”…
This is another recent favorite. No staging whatsoever… Hopefully I can be forgiven, as you can imagine I was a little more than a little wet and cold. My wife, friends and I had to put in some rough miles to get that much snow and slush stuck to the bikes.
Once I learned there was a nuance to staging a bike for a photo (drive side facing the camera, valve stems at 6:00, crank arms set so the back arm is obscured by the frame, etc.) I was a bit of a stickler about sticking to the rules. While there’s no doubt, a bike photographed properly staged looks better, those “crap, I’m just too tired to mess with all of the particulars” photos are growing on me.
It’s not a “rage against the machine” thing, as I clearly have my “take my time and stage the bikes properly” photos:
The truth is, I’m enjoying a different perspective lately. I like the odd angle shot:
Or better, the photo that says “I’ve been somewhere” or the photo that helps me to remember a ride, or time spent with my wife and friends… or the beginning of another wonderful summer’s day:
In the last few years, while the bike is always important, it’s become more about where that bike has been – or better, who I was there with. That’s what puts a smile on my face.
Ride hard my friends… There are no points for “I wish I had done it differently”.