Using your bicycle for photography

You are the sort of person that loves following other peoples rides because it inspires you or because your friends value your ride choices.   Lets show them the good stuff, learn to take better photos. Let’s take good photos.

This article first appeared here in more detail.
PHOTOGRAPHY ON A BIKE RIDE – Pedal And Tring Tring

Mobile Phones

The best camera to take a photo is the one you have with you.  Generally that is the mobile phone and if you are lucky enough to have one that is a couple of years old, they are terrific.  To become better at photography and to to tell the story of your ride, take 3-5 good photos a ride.   If you record a ride in Strava or RideWithGPS, this is a great place to put those three photos.

Portable Cameras

Small cameras are much easier to use whilst riding a bike.  I always slow down to take these photos and that is something that is tricky with a mobile. I use a camera with a  high quality image sensor.  If your camera shoots raw shots, you can recover the over and under exposed photos to make sure of that photo you took.  I use this quite a lot.  This techique will not fix blury photos though.

*Taking photos in groups whist riding close to each other is pretty much a bad idea so don’t bother.

Action Cameras 

The latest go pro and related devices are starting to take good photographs now and no doubt voice control will make these easier to use.  I found the photos you took with an action camera were high volume, little skill, and not such high res.  If you actually like watching bicycle videos, go ahead.  I only like the really good ones.

DLSR and Mirror Cameras

These wonderful tools of photography are hard to use on a bike as you need to store them safely and stop completely.  Ask your self, will I really take lots of photos or not.  If you are taking lots of photos now with a phone, the world of expensive bigger cameras may be for you.

Tips for casual cycling photos

The sun everywhere but in front of you – 1

I you can avoid it, don’t take a photo into the sun. When you ride into a photographic area, just look around away from the sun. There you will find your photo.

Photos into the sun – 2 

Sometimes you have to shoot into the sun.  I simply like to find a piece of shade and take the photo from there.  In this photo of the bridge, I stopped under the last tree. I know from experience that shooting after that spot never works.

Photo of a trail – 3 

The best photos of trails are where the track curves. They are more interesting.  As I like to show cyclists what a trail looks like, I find the bendy bits.

Include cyclists on a trail – 4

A trail looks like a cycling trail if there is a cyclist on it.  This can be really difficult if the trail isn’t busy so if you see a cyclist in the distance, this might be your chance.  In this photo I show that the trail is for road cyclists and its really spectacular.

Always include your bike somewhere in the photo – 5

If you want to promote cycling, include your bike somewhere in the photo.

Summary

I cannot overstate the best way to improve your photos is to simply take more photos and learn as you go.  Photography is one of my cycling hobbies.  See BikeTrail.Blog for more or https://www.facebook.com/groups/letsgocycling

 

 

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