One of the funny and interesting elements going down around Whistler this week has been the ogling and scrutinizing of other people’s camera gear. If you hadn’t noticed, there is a huge number of mountain bike media-heads in Whistler this week shuttling from event-to-event stealing each other’s angles, all trying to get the shot. Add an even larger number of fans with big camera rigs hopping fences and trying to get in on the action, and you have a recipe for a lot of camera-envy.
As a word-slinger and writer I have no business spending any time behind the lens of a camera. In fact, I don’t have any business being in front of the camera either, but that’s not because I have a face for radio, it’s because I keep my mountain bike shred skills a deeply buried secret. I’m like indie music, so good that nobody would ever want to listen to or photograph me.
Anyhow, over the last few days I’ve been rolling into Crankworx events flashing my press pass and joining the mob of snapper-graphers fighting for elbowroom and angles. While I have no problem getting the elbowroom (I’m a hulking 165lbs) or the angles, I’ve started to feel a little self-conscious digging into my camera bag and pulling out my touristy little camera. At one point, actually, I put my camera away and pulled out my iPhone because really, what’s the difference? I can Instagram with the best of them.
However, if you’ve had a chance to see any of the Flickr photo streams coming out of Crankworx this week, you know this isn’t a game of Instagram.
An event like Crankworx attracts super talented photographers who are out on the mountain shooting day-after-grueling-day. They capture the moments that inspire us and they’re helping tell the story of what’s happening deep in the forest, right now. Without these camera-wielding mountain soldiers we’d see the finish line, the podium, and little else. Thankfully through their hard work and photos we can, at least for a moment, see what the photogs saw and in some small way experience those great moments.
With less than 24 hours to go before the 2012 Deep Summer Photo Challenge slide shows are premiered, I can hardly wait. Easily the most anticipated event of the festival, it is going to be an amazing night of peeking into the lenses of six very talented photographers. With only three days to shoot and produce a show, the photographers are tested under the pressure of having to be totally on. I guarantee, though, with the amount of mountain biking talent in Whistler right now coupled with the phenomenal camera-work of this year’s photographers, we’ll be in for a good show.
Good luck to each of the photographers competing! I’ll be there re-living great moments for the very first time, and instagraming the whole thing. See ya there.