Monday, February 14, 2011

Cascada de Tamul... a Big Freakin' Waterfall!

Attention paddlers and wanna-be paddlers!!!! Visit your local pro-shop and pick up the latest issue of Rapid Magazine! The good folks up there in the nether-regions of North America have always treated me well.


In this latest issue you'll see a kayaking pic a took in Mexico of my friend Ben Kvanli. Ben is an Olympic lunatic who must paddle every day, lest his brain explode. This photograph was made at the Cascada de Tamul. Where the Rio Gallinas and the Rio Santa Maria rivers meet to form the Rio Tampaon, you will find the Cascada de Tamul... a behemoth. Ben, in his infinite wisdom, figured it would be a good idea to try to paddle as close as he could to the falls.... Now Ben is a strong dude... he paddled in the 1996 Olympics when they were in Atlanta (though the kayaking events were held on the Ocoee River in Tennessee), and like I said, it is very rare that Ben goes a day without paddling. Thank heavens he wasn't strong enough to actually make it to the falls... I don't think anyone would be. The air current alone from the downdraft of the thousands of cubic feet of water pouring over that cliff was thankfully enough of a barrier to hinder his self-destructive attempt.... because I guarantee if he made it all the way he would have been pummeled to death by the ferocity of those waters.... boooooo... no one likes it when a friend is pummeled to death.

Anyway... at least the attempt made for a decent photograph. :)

Monday, February 07, 2011

Meet George Hincapie...

Meet George Hincapie... George has raced in the Tour de France 15 times! He is one of only 2 riders to have raced on 8 winning teams. George currently races on Team BMC and rocks his own line of clothing, Hincapie Sportswear. George is a total badass, and a completely nice guy.

I have had the good fortune to shoot for the good folks at Bicycling Magazine a few times now. When their photo editor, Stacey Emenecker, first called, I hadn't done any real riding in at least 10 years. I found my bike, immediately scraped off the rust, and dropped it off at the shop for a tuneup. They had to replace all the wires, but before you know it my $400 bike was ready to shred (my chicken-legs would be another issue all-together). The first story I shot was just a one page expose of Asheville... they printed only a few pictures, but man had I gone all out! Since then Bicycling has assigned me to shoot various rides and trails in the area, of which I rode and photographed happily. But the kicker came late last year when they asked me to shoot portraits of George Hincapie...

Of one of the upsides to this down economy is the fact that magazines are less willing to fly folks places, and more will willing to look for local photography talent. I'd bet that 5 years ago Bicycling probably would have flown someone in or driven someone up from Atlanta for this shoot, instead of even considering a local shooter.... Thankfully, they asked me, and I was thrilled.

What started out as a mostly fashion shoot morphed into something very conceptually cool: Street George and Racing George... Street George is a bit more relaxed... he rides a top-of-the-line commuter bike and wears casual clothes... he smiles a lot... he is on your level and approachable (notice height of camera - at mid level). Racing George is tougher... he is competitive and fierce... he rides a top-of-the-line racing bike and wears sleek racing clothes... he gazes intently and stands above you, heroic (notice height of the camera - low as can be). Side by side, they are quite the dichotomy... notice even the cross of their arms...

george_hincapie-1-4 George_Hincapie-2-2
The coolest thing of all: Bicycling printed both as covers!!! Yup, two versions of the same magazine... same on the inside, but different on the outside. So not only did I get my first national cover, but I got it doubled! I was quite thrilled and honored. I can't wait for another Bicycling shoot.


Getting ready to launch a new website.... so if you are in need of a documentary, editorial, commercial, or portrait photographer in or around Asheville, North Carolina or Greenville, South Carolina, visit me!