BMX rider in front of San Francisco City Hall

BMX rider in front of San Francisco City Hall

Searching for good things to photograph in San Francisco, the city hall wasn’t high on my list. It seemed difficult to find a unique image of the building. Walking towards downtown from Alamo Square I was near San Francisco City Hall. Being my first time in the city I had some time to check it out. Little did I know Dew Tour (sponsored by soft drinks brand Mountain Dew) was on.

At first this was a disappointment. From the placement of the stands, big trucks and hundreds of people, there wasn’t a clear view of the whole building. Sports photography is something I do enjoy, especially on two wheels. After an hour or two of wondering around the track and shooting hundreds of photos I found this spot. Using the 200mm zoom lens I could crop out everything but the rider. The rider must be well over 100 metres from the front of the City Hall.

BMX biker

BMX biker

Walking down to San Francisco’s Civic Centre the last thing I was expecting was a sports event. I had planned an architectural photograph of the huge City Hall. What I found was an action sports festival called Dew Tour (sponsored by soft drinks brand Mountain Dew). There were many skaters and BMX riders doing huge jumps. As I had recently had a photo shoot at the Venice Beach Skate Park I focused on the BMX area. They had about half a dozen dirt jumps right in front of the Civic Centre and City Hall buildings. As always with such sports it can be tricky to capture the faces of the athletes but after hundreds of failed shots this is probably my favourite of the afternoon. I believe (please correct me if I’m wrong) that this trick is called a Superman.

Skater at Venice Beach

Skater at Venice Beach

One of my favourite parts of Venice Beach is the skate park. My friend Michael introduced me to this skater who had amazing skills. The skaters didn’t mind being photographed and even in the heat of the mid morning got some excellent air. This photograph is probably my best as you can really see the concentration on his face. It did make me wish I had a much faster lens, I was able to freeze the action here but the background is far to clear and in focus for my preference.

Paddleboarding

Paddleboarding

Paddleboarding is a water sport that appears to combine padding with surfing. The first time I saw someone doing this was across a small bay in Sydney Harbour, Australia. This photograph was taken in Judge’s Bay. This is a very still bay of water in Auckland. Although the boards look like surf boards and from this angle seem short, they are usually around 12 feet long.

Back flip kick at One Tree Hill

Back flip kick at One Tree Hill

Not sure what to expect, as I headed down to the ASB Show grounds last Saturday, for Big Boys Toys 2012 show. I focused on two massive ramps, that BMX riders and Motocross riders were using to perform some insane stunts. In the background of the above photograph is One Tree Hill, a 182 metre volcanic peak. Although some of the stunts, especially from the motocross guys, pictured below are probably more impressive. 

My aim was to capture a rider next to the obelisk at the top of the hill. This proved much more challenging than excepted. Firstly, I had to get further back and zoom in as far as much camera would let me. Then there was no way of telling exactly where in the air they were going to be. Still I got a couple of photographs that I like.