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Thread: Photography and motorcycling

  1. #1
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    Photography and motorcycling

    I have kind of thought that photography, not with iphone cameras, and motorcycling were somewhat incompatible. You are riding down a road and all of a sudden a stunning panorama stretches before your eyes. What do you do? No place to turn off. You stop the bike and park it (hopefully out of traffic). You have to shed your helmet and gloves, pull your camera from wherever you store it and grab the shot. Then reverse it all and continue on your way until another photo opportunity appears. A pillion makes it even more complicated!

    Nevertheless I persist in trying to be an amateur photographer while motorcycling. Just wondering-can anyone provide any tips as regards storing the camera and accessories to make them reasonably accessible. Do you stash them in the tank bag? Wear them on your back?

    Larry

  2. #2
    Registered User WalterK75's Avatar
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    Good question. I've been thinking about this also. I wear a modular helmet so I'm hoping I don't have to remove the helmet to take a picture. I'm thinking I'll use a Canon G3 to start with. I'll probably carry it in the tank bag. If this works I'll try the DSLR. Foam and bubble wrap to protect lenses, I think.

    Looking forward to hearing ideas from more experienced photographers.
    Walter

    All government, of course, is against liberty.
    H. L. Mencken

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    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Learn to ride with a camera around your neck. If you ride with some of the people I ride with, they only stop for fuel and I'd never have pictures from a trip.

    There are no left handed cameras, but some cameras aren't hard to operate with your clutch hand. Big buttons, and a camera with a lens cap. The cameras with automatic lens covers WILL get clogged with bugs. It requires disassembly to fix.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

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    Cam Killer marchyman's Avatar
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    I typically travel with 2-4 cameras (not including my phone).

    2 of the cameras are for video. I don't use them often but when I do one is mounted on the bike and other on my helmet.

    I've a P&S camera tethered to my tank bag. The tether is a "gearkeeper" of the type used by truckers for their CB mics. It gives me the option of dropping the camera if necessary, knowing it won't go far. I literally "point and shoot" when using this camera, holding it in my left hand with my fore finger on the shutter release. I use neither viewfinder nor the LCD live-view on the back. I hold the camera such that the back is parallel to the palm of my hand and then point my hand at whatever I want to shoot while riding down the road. That gives me shots like this:



    I've replaced the rear saddle of my GS with a tail pack that typically contains a DSLR plus a couple of extra lenses. That's what I use when stopped. Yeah, I have to pull my helmet off to get my eye close to the viewfinder. If the shot is worth taking it is worth removing my helmet. Even the "model" will sometimes wait.



    A gorillapod stuck in a pannier plus a remote trigger lets me get in the shot, too.


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    Registered User dthogey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by royaltyl View Post
    I have kind of thought that photography, not with iphone cameras, and motorcycling were somewhat incompatible. You are riding down a road and all of a sudden a stunning panorama stretches before your eyes. What do you do? No place to turn off. You stop the bike and park it (hopefully out of traffic). You have to shed your helmet and gloves, pull your camera from wherever you store it and grab the shot. Then reverse it all and continue on your way until another photo opportunity appears. A pillion makes it even more complicated!

    Nevertheless I persist in trying to be an amateur photographer while motorcycling. Just wondering-can anyone provide any tips as regards storing the camera and accessories to make them reasonably accessible. Do you stash them in the tank bag? Wear them on your back?

    Larry
    I use a lanyard around my neck hooked to the wrist strap on the camera and keep the camera in my chest pocket on my coat. I can then easily use my left hand to grab the camera, turn it on, then take some pics.
    David Hogerheide

    2009 K1200LT
    2012 Triumph Tiger 800

  6. #6
    BugCollector
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    Stopping to take pictures means stopping. So that's pretty much out. I stop for gas. A couple of times I've stopped to eat. I've really got to change my habits a bit. Anyway, I just bought a GoPro camera because the Goldwing I got a few weeks ago already has a mount for it on the windshield. I need to add a mount to the BMW. I will now be taking photos/videos of my adventures... If I remember to get off and turn it on.

  7. #7
    Registered User WalterK75's Avatar
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    Am I reading these posts correctly? Are people taking photographs with one hand while riding their motorcycles?
    Walter

    All government, of course, is against liberty.
    H. L. Mencken

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    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walterK75 View Post
    Am I reading these posts correctly? Are people taking photographs with one hand while riding their motorcycles?
    I am. Lots of throwaways with this method. Pointing the camera sideways is just a guess about what will be in the frame.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

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    Cam Killer marchyman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walterK75 View Post
    Am I reading these posts correctly? Are people taking photographs with one hand while riding their motorcycles?
    Yes. Does this surprise you? I'll sometimes ride with a hand resting at my side or on my tank bag, too. I've even been known to take my feet off the pegs once in a while or stand on the pegs even when not in the dirt.

  10. #10
    2014 R1200GSW Rich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walterK75 View Post
    Am I reading these posts correctly? Are people taking photographs with one hand while riding their motorcycles?
    I do it all the time.

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    If you all were out on a less-traveled road and you spotted a scene you wanted to capture, would you stop? Pull to the side, even if there was no or very little shoulder, turn on the flashers and take the shot? So many times I have seen a picture and there was no place to pull over. I use a Canon 40D and it is not a P&S camera and it is too heavy to use one-handed.

    Larry

  12. #12
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by royaltyl View Post
    I use a Canon 40D and it is not a P&S camera and it is too heavy to use one-handed.
    Sometimes I use the T3i and rest it on the tank bag, take my hand off the throttle and use my right hand to take the shot. It helps if you're headed downhill and don't have to hold the throttle open. Like this:

    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

  13. #13
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    I can maybe see having the camera already sitting on a tankbag or handlebar mount and needing minimal time to aim it and shoot with a couple of fingers, but not much more than that. Anyone else who says they do more than that is no better than the cage drivers that say they are so good at texting that it doesn't make them any less safe to be around.

    And what are you all smoking that you think it's a good idea to have a camera hanging around your necks? It doesn't take much weight at all to cause damage to your neck in a crash, or even get it snagged on something where you would otherwise be uninjured.

  14. #14
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ClassicVW View Post
    I can maybe see having the camera already sitting on a tankbag or handlebar mount and needing minimal time to aim it and shoot with a couple of fingers, but not much more than that. Anyone else who says they do more than that is no better than the cage drivers that say they are so good at texting that it doesn't make them any less safe to be around.
    I never use the camera when there is traffic, but I'm one of the first who ever sent email from a moving cage. That phone had a static IP and it was 1987; it went out over fidonet. Just did it once, haven't sent text since. It was tough and I actually am good at multitasking, but not stupid.

    Camera around my neck? If I go down, I'm gonna be hurting anyway, maybe dead. I don't worry about "perhaps" -- have plenty of other things to worry about.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

  15. #15
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    I guess you don't bother with protective clothing either with a line of thinking like that about the camera....

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