Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

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shineofleo Forum Member • Posts: 84
Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?
1

I am in a dilemma between cycling and photography.

"Serious cyclist", I mean you have one or more expensive road bike(s), and you can spend a whole day (more than 6 hours) riding more than 150KM, and maybe some serious climbing.

Unfortunately, my conclusion is that, once you cycle, well not necessarily 150km but 50km mileage in one run maybe - you can not take photos. When you want to take photos of cycling sports, you definitely need a car/motocycle/or even a Segway, so cycling is not possible.

However, it is such a good chance for photography when you are cycling!

* You will pass some beautiful scene, which you will not normally see. This is more like landscape photography.

* With a club riding, you may want to take photos of your friends. Either:

- You stop and take some actionshots from a fixed position,

- or, you take photos when you are on a bike. Yes it can be dangerous, but the need is real.

So my question is, how you deal with such dilemma? Do you still try to take photos during cycling? or completely give up? Several possible cases:

* Phone.

* Gopro/Sony RX0 as such. Note photo only, not video.

* Mirrorless in a bagpack, or a tight strap on body.

* DSLR - but I highly doubt that, it would be super heavy.

* Any new/other options? Sigma FP? Fuji X100 series?

I am trying to explore the possibility to take good photos while cycling, so any experience is appreciated. Thanks!

Fujifilm FinePix X100
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twamers Senior Member • Posts: 1,774
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

I am not what I would call a serious cyclist but often do 30km/45km (although I far prefer miles).  I have taken a DSLR in a rucksack - not heavy at all - Nikon D5000 and 18-55 lens - that's a relatively old 12mp camera but still takes very nice shots.  I also use a smaller Fuji XM-1 with a 27mm prime lens.  Smaller and lighter but not necessarily better.  That goes in my rucksack too.  I don't find either a problem.  Of course I have a phone too but if I want a decent photo one of the cameras is with me.

cosmicnode Veteran Member • Posts: 5,979
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

I ride 20-30miles I live close to the North Yorkshire Moor's National park, for cycling I Have a Olympus E-M10mk2. with the 14-42mm EZ collapsible zoom, this fits into one of the 3 rear pockets of a cycling jersey. I am often riding on my own so I can easily stop lean my bike against a wall and shoot, I have tried several ways to carry the gear and this is for me the best method. I have used a D300 with 10-24mm in a saddle bag and find the extra steps required to stop and take a photo to sometimes stop me from doing so, and of course it is heavier. I tried a Nikon V1 but the image quality is not up to m4/3 for other uses ,( I always carry a small camera around with me) I used a Olympus E-PL8 but the lack of a viewfinder made me change to the E-M10, Pack it in a plastic freezer bag to stop condensation on a hot day from your sweat. In a bike you often ride down narrow lanes or through places where you probably would never drive a car. There are also other small m4/3 lenses that can be carried around with you.

Easby Hall church Nr Great Ayton. shot through the Locked gates it's private property.

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OP shineofleo Forum Member • Posts: 84
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

cosmicnode wrote:

I ride 20-30miles I live close to the North Yorkshire Moor's National park, for cycling I Have a Olympus E-M10mk2. with the 14-42mm EZ collapsible zoom, this fits into one of the 3 rear pockets of a cycling jersey. I am often riding on my own so I can easily stop lean my bike against a wall and shoot, I have tried several ways to carry the gear and this is for me the best method. I have used a D300 with 10-24mm in a saddle bag and find the extra steps required to stop and take a photo to sometimes stop me from doing so, and of course it is heavier. I tried a Nikon V1 but the image quality is not up to m4/3 for other uses ,( I always carry a small camera around with me) I used a Olympus E-PL8 but the lack of a viewfinder made me change to the E-M10, Pack it in a plastic freezer bag to stop condensation on a hot day from your sweat. In a bike you often ride down narrow lanes or through places where you probably would never drive a car. There are also other small m4/3 lenses that can be carried around with you.

Thanks for the kind reply! This is exactly what I am looking for - small camera is not good enough, but good camera is too big.

May I ask if EM10mk2 is good enough? So you mostly take landscapes I guess? I am surprised that the EM10mk2 with 14-42 can fit into the jersey rear pocket!

I  have quite a few m43 lenses since my video equipments use them, but they are manual lenses mostly.

How do you think m43 by the way? given the fact that Olympus sold their camera division...

cosmicnode Veteran Member • Posts: 5,979
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

shineofleo wrote:

cosmicnode wrote:

I ride 20-30miles I live close to the North Yorkshire Moor's National park, for cycling I Have a Olympus E-M10mk2. with the 14-42mm EZ collapsible zoom, this fits into one of the 3 rear pockets of a cycling jersey. I am often riding on my own so I can easily stop lean my bike against a wall and shoot, I have tried several ways to carry the gear and this is for me the best method. I have used a D300 with 10-24mm in a saddle bag and find the extra steps required to stop and take a photo to sometimes stop me from doing so, and of course it is heavier. I tried a Nikon V1 but the image quality is not up to m4/3 for other uses ,( I always carry a small camera around with me) I used a Olympus E-PL8 but the lack of a viewfinder made me change to the E-M10, Pack it in a plastic freezer bag to stop condensation on a hot day from your sweat. In a bike you often ride down narrow lanes or through places where you probably would never drive a car. There are also other small m4/3 lenses that can be carried around with you.

Thanks for the kind reply! This is exactly what I am looking for - small camera is not good enough, but good camera is too big.

May I ask if EM10mk2 is good enough? So you mostly take landscapes I guess? I am surprised that the EM10mk2 with 14-42 can fit into the jersey rear pocket!

Since the shots taken are all in good light, I don't find a problem. the IBIS is very good on Olympus camera's. the latest E-M10 mk4 is 20mp. on my cycle rides I take mostly landscapes but I would take a small tele zoom if I wanted to shoot a race. although I normally drive to a race and shoot with the E-M1X and 40-150m f2,8

I have quite a few m43 lenses since my video equipments use them, but they are manual lenses mostly.

How do you think m43 by the way? given the fact that Olympus sold their camera division...

Personally I am not worried about the gear it will still work for many years and the new owners will want to sell to existing and new owners. There will also be a large amount of used gear for many years. The photographic industry is contracting and all manufacturers could be in trouble soon.

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"I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit, it's the only way to be sure."

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OP shineofleo Forum Member • Posts: 84
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

Good points.

Also are you worried about the weather sealing, which EM10 is not? Cycling in full effort does produce lots of steam. My phone in the back pocket always get wet very easily. Your EM10 is all right?

EM5mkII has better seals, however the weather sealed lenses are... much bigger, so it doesn't  take advantages of it...

cosmicnode Veteran Member • Posts: 5,979
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

shineofleo wrote:

Good points.

Also are you worried about the weather sealing, which EM10 is not? Cycling in full effort does produce lots of steam. My phone in the back pocket always get wet very easily. Your EM10 is all right?

I always carry it inside a freezer bag or Dog walking bag (unused of course) this prevents it getting wet for whatever reason.

EM5mkII has better seals, however the weather sealed lenses are... much bigger, so it doesn't take advantages of it...

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Mike.
"I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit, it's the only way to be sure."

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OP shineofleo Forum Member • Posts: 84
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

Sure. A plastic bag is a good habit especially with cyclist! Thanks!

OM mani padme hum Regular Member • Posts: 319
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

First you need to decide why you're out there, as IMHO it's too difficult to do long rides and take many pics at the same time.

If cycling matters more, then something like a GoPro with a bike mount might work; I think Minoura make a bar clamp with a tripod screw to go on the bars too, which should hold most small cameras.

If you're prepared to stop and take your time, then you need to figure out what gear you're prepared to carry, and fiddle about with. In my case that would be an RX100 or GM5 in a very small bar bag/pocket, with a few small lenses.

If you're riding with others they're unlikely to be patient, so speed will matter.

If you're by yourself there are more options. For examples of what can be done I suggest checking out these sites:

bikepacking.com

whileoutriding.com

http://www.wot.latrottineuse.com/en/world-tour-push-scooter/

^ The last isn't quite cycling, but close enough.

Dismayed Contributing Member • Posts: 734
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

shineofleo wrote:

I am in a dilemma between cycling and photography.

"Serious cyclist", I mean you have one or more expensive road bike(s), and you can spend a whole day (more than 6 hours) riding more than 150KM, and maybe some serious climbing.

Unfortunately, my conclusion is that, once you cycle, well not necessarily 150km but 50km mileage in one run maybe - you can not take photos. When you want to take photos of cycling sports, you definitely need a car/motocycle/or even a Segway, so cycling is not possible.

However, it is such a good chance for photography when you are cycling!

* You will pass some beautiful scene, which you will not normally see. This is more like landscape photography.

* With a club riding, you may want to take photos of your friends. Either:

- You stop and take some actionshots from a fixed position,

- or, you take photos when you are on a bike. Yes it can be dangerous, but the need is real.

So my question is, how you deal with such dilemma? Do you still try to take photos during cycling? or completely give up? Several possible cases:

* Phone.

* Gopro/Sony RX0 as such. Note photo only, not video.

* Mirrorless in a bagpack, or a tight strap on body.

* DSLR - but I highly doubt that, it would be super heavy.

* Any new/other options? Sigma FP? Fuji X100 series?

I am trying to explore the possibility to take good photos while cycling, so any experience is appreciated. Thanks!

Not sure if I qualify as serious - I rode throughout Europe for a summer after I finished graduate school, so my bicycle was relatively inexpensive.  And I was touring, so I had 25-30 lbs. of gear.  But I did ride over 2,000 miles, and I crossed 3 major passes in the Swiss Alps.

I agree that taking photos while riding is dangerous.  That's something to avoid because road rash is painful.

My advice would be to think about your priorities.  I would usually stop for breaks when there was beautiful scenery, and I'd often pull out my camera and take a few shots.

Club rides?  Are nice photos important enough to drop back from the fastest riders?  You could get nice shots of folks who are a bit slower than the fastest riders, and the other club members would likely appreciate any photos that you choose to share with them.

You'll be shooting photos in decent light, so even smaller sensors should perform well.  Perhaps something that will fit easily in the rear pocket of a cycling jersey.

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saskskier Regular Member • Posts: 207
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

I haven’t spent much time road biking in a few years, but spend a lot of time mountain biking in summer and typically need to make a conscious decision whether I am just riding or if I’m going to be taking some shots.  I generally focus more on enduro/downhill riding so if I’m carrying my gear, I need to be careful about the things I ride vs the things I walk down as I don’t want to crash.

When shooting, I’m typically shooting others who are riding, so I bring my D500, 10-20mm and (often) my 70-200.

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Skeeterbytes Forum Pro • Posts: 19,257
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

I once knocked out serious mileage (up to double-centuries) but it's been a long while. I've paced my running kid from a bike and admit my attempts at shooting her using the phone cam have not been safe and I can't recommend it. A helmet-mount gopro or something similar is the only thing I'd use while riding, unless there's an image-stabilized bar-mount option. (If you've seen the rear-facing bike-mount live shots from inside the Le Tour peloton, you know how dramatic close-action video can be.)

A high-end fixed lens compact such as an LX100 or a compact MILC, carried in a small fanny pack would work great for destination and rest stop shots better than what one would get from a phone cam. Guess the question is whether you'd actually use it enough to warrant the extra weight. Cyclists are the original gram-weenies, reknowned for spending thousands to shave a few ounces of bike weight. A pound of camera would be noticed on a five-hour day.

Allez,

Rick

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OldGuy-Yuri Regular Member • Posts: 245
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?

shineofleo wrote:

I am in a dilemma between cycling and photography.

...

Unfortunately, my conclusion is that, once you cycle, well not necessarily 150km but 50km mileage in one run maybe - you can not take photos. ...

However, it is such a good chance for photography when you are cycling!

* You will pass some beautiful scene, which you will not normally see. This is more like landscape photography.

* With a club riding, you may want to take photos of your friends. Either:

- You stop and take some actionshots from a fixed position,

So my question is, how you deal with such dilemma? Do you still try to take photos during cycling? or completely give up?

...

I am trying to explore the possibility to take good photos while cycling, so any experience is appreciated. Thanks!

covering all bases - not with one process...

cycling with anyone I might normally ride with - 1 or 2 or more (or Sunday 'Worlds') - I can carry a camera/phone but not plan to use it... it is a 'ride' ('Worlds' you only carry gels... LOL!)
'club ride' - plan to suffer - LOL! I did, a few times, do some club ride pics, but did known shortcuts to get into good photo locations... Haven't done any more in a decade...

Solo ride - If... I think I'm going thru areas where there might be some good photo ops...
I tried an Oly E-PL5 with 14-42 ez - very compact, but still a little big (I am a M43 guy...)

Finally settled on Sony Compacts as good carry and quite good IQ/pics. Currently have a HX80 and might go to HX90 - both have viewfinders that work!
I never carry cameras in jersey pockets - way too wet, even with ziplock bag. Pockets are for bars, gels and now 'mask'...
When I want to carry the HX80, it goes onto the HANDLEBAR, in a small/medium seatbag, like this:

usually have enough space to also jam windvest in on those cold eary morning starts. Also keeps potential dirt away, on those rides where the roads are wet/gritty.

But mostly I take the 'pic' with my mind's eye...
in your 70's, it can (and should) no longer be serious... but it can still be fun, long day, biggish miles,
just not as fast...
58 yrs as a dedicated rider/racer , most recent 28 out here in Central CA, USA - not bad, I likie (with occasional trips back to Europe)
A photographer since my dad gave me his Leica iiiF in '60.
The way I see it, a marriage of both is tough. Worth trying, but being ok to give each the time when its right. no regrets.
YMMV...
Oh yes, then there's the wife, the kids and the grandkids... and, and, and...
I could never get over why we need so much time sleeping! LOL!
Thx
Yuri

D Lynch Veteran Member • Posts: 5,096
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?
1

Dismayed wrote:

shineofleo wrote:

I

Not sure if I qualify as serious - I rode throughout Europe for a summer after I finished graduate school, so my bicycle was relatively inexpensive. And I was touring, so I had 25-30 lbs. of gear. But I did ride over 2,000 miles, and I crossed 3 major passes in the Swiss Alps.

I agree that taking photos while riding is dangerous. That's something to avoid because road rash is painful.

My advice would be to think about your priorities. I would usually stop for breaks when there was beautiful scenery, and I'd often pull out my camera and take a few shots.

Club rides? Are nice photos important enough to drop back from the fastest riders? You could get nice shots of folks who are a bit slower than the fastest riders, and the other club members would likely appreciate any photos that you choose to share with them.

You'll be shooting photos in decent light, so even smaller sensors should perform well. Perhaps something that will fit easily in the rear pocket of a cycling jersey.

I was a ski instructor for a long time. I had a part time photo business. I ruined a trip to Vail by taking all my photo gear, in case I needed it.

Life's about choices.

My friend who is a good photographer showed me his shirt-pocket size camera with a fixed lens.  He helped me a lot.

Since then I've always had a small, light weight camera to compliment my dslr or mirrorless system.

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Tourlou Senior Member • Posts: 1,011
Do like me, get a tandem... Got 2 actually.
2

Find a good captain and sit on stoker seat.  From there, you can snap as many pictures as you like.  If you prefer captaining, subcontract the photography to your stoker.  You can find good used ones like these two for not a lot of money.  These one are on 26 inches fat tires for riding with kids on any kind of surfaces.

Regards.

Ron

OM mani padme hum Regular Member • Posts: 319
Re: Do like me, get a tandem... Got 2 actually.
2

Buying a tandem is the easy part. Buying a stoker is much more difficult... 

Tourlou Senior Member • Posts: 1,011
Re: Do like me, get a tandem... Got 2 actually.

I've go 2 good one and a spare captain that I can rent you!  Can go myself too!!!  Lol!!!  As long as you pay the airplane ticket.

Ron

Skeeterbytes Forum Pro • Posts: 19,257
Re: Do like me, get a tandem... Got 2 actually.

Heh

Back when I used to ride centuries and the occasional double, drafting tandems was a valuable survival strategy. So, thanks from the rest of us!

Saw a belt-drive tandem at a bicycle show that looked like an ideal setup. I shudder at the thought of maintaining all that chain, plus belt drive is wonderfully silent. Folks who complain about the price of camera gear don't realize how quickly one can burn through $10k ordering a bike.

Cheers,

Rick

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Tourlou Senior Member • Posts: 1,011
Re: Do like me, get a tandem... Got 2 actually.

Yep, Gates belt drive, a Rohloff speedhub and Magura hydraulic disk brakes...  The ultimate 0 maintenance machine!

looneytongueben New Member • Posts: 8
Re: Any serious cyclist AND photographer here?
1

Completely agree with you here. It's the most important thing to do before heading out the door.

Joining a club or riding with a friend might help you explore the local area and provide some inspiration.

Make a list of ideas because plans can change when you wake up and check the weather forecast. Understand that you'll have to wait to get the shot another day. It could be weather dependent, or the wrong time of day.

You'll need to pedal faster up the hill and get ahead if you want to get some action shots. Or explain to the group that you want to do some photography and wait along the route for them.

I've came off twice and wouldn't recommend putting a camera in your pocket. Attached to the frame would offer better protection. Also the weight over several hours would be noticeable on your lower back.

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