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  • Writer's pictureFaruk Kara

BMX Stunts

Updated: Sep 16, 2022

Not my usual thing but I saw this guy whilst I was having a cup of coffee outside the new Dulcedo in Eddington. There is some lovely sculptural wooden seating in the square which is just perfect for BMX trick riding. I was talking to the friend I was at the cafe with whilst trying not to seem rude by constantly looking past them over their shoulder at the biker. As our conversation came to a natural break, I saw my chance to grab my camera and headover only to see the rider disappearing off. I do this less now but I still make the mistake of not grabbing my opportunity when it is presented. Disappointed, I finished my coffee thinking about all the shots I could have got.

Having got my own bike, I was heading home when I caught sight of the BMX rider working out some tricks outside the Storey's Field Centre. I was on my bike, heading home, thinking of lunch, but I wasn't going to miss the opportunity again. So I stopped to ask the question. I have been knocked back on the odd occasion but most people engage and if you don't ask, you don't get! My advice when asking is be honest, offer to share the photo with them - I always carry a business card in my camera bag for that purpose, be clear what you want them to do. I could have shot a lot photos whilst trying to get the right light and background but that wasn't an option. I chose to go with the light coming from my right at 90 degrees to get a good contrast.

These photos were taken handheld at ISO 50 as it was a bright Autumn morning. Depending on the subject matter, i.e. when speed adds another dimensional narrative to the photograph, you might choose slowing down the shutter speed so the blur created shows movement. I wanted to freeze the action so I set shutter speed at 1/500th with the aperture set at f4.5. I was looking for a narrative so I went with a series of photos around a single trick.

BMX rider performing a trick
Here I Go

BMX rider performing a trick, photographed mid air
Take Off

BMX rider performing a trick, photographed mid air and performing a 180
One Eighty
BMX rider performing a trick, photographed mid air about to land
Prepare for Landing
BMX rider performing a trick, photographed landing successfully
And Relax while Going Backwards

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