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best way to display bikes for photos?(27 posts)

best way to display bikes for photos?DougSloan
Apr 3, 2003 8:03 AM
What's the consensus on the best ways to display bikes for photographs? Up against the garage door? On a frame stand? Trainer? Let's assume Graham Watson isn't around to photograph you on the bike... Suggestions?

re: best way to display bikes for photos?PEDDLEFOOT
Apr 3, 2003 8:09 AM
Against a flat plain colred background that wo'nt clash with the color of your bike. the color should be neutral so the bike won't blend in.I thhink the cranks should be horizontal also.
A solid-color bedsheet ...Humma Hah
Apr 3, 2003 8:16 AM
... that contrasts and complements the bike's colors, draped over something as a backdrop. Photograph from a low angle.

Or a natural setting.

Best yet: in motion! They're not intended to sit around having their picture taken.

As most of you guys do not have bikes equipped with the ultimate photo accessory -- a kickstand -- you might get or rig a wheel stand or other device to hold the bike up. I've never liked the looks of one leaning against the wall.
how do the pros do it?DougSloan
Apr 3, 2003 8:32 AM
Professional photographs make the bikes look like they are balancing all by themselves. How do they do that?

Agree about the kickstand. Got one on the Milano. However, it would be both impossible and sacrilege to put them on most racing bikes.

I might put one on the Paramount ...Humma Hah
Apr 3, 2003 8:36 AM
... just to hear you all scream! There's on on the old Peugeot I recently rescued, that ought to fit, just long enough to take a picture.

Would I be kicked off the forum? Would you simply delete it as obscene?

I've seen photos of museum bikes sitting on inconspicuous little stands that the wheels sit in. Or you could drive a thin steel fencepost (there are some about 3/8" in diameter) into the ground and set the bike against that.
I might have to get involvedDougSloan
Apr 3, 2003 8:52 AM
I think that would be obscene. Given your history and status here, though, we might make an exception.

I feel a great disturbance in The Force nmJS Haiku Shop
Apr 3, 2003 9:40 AM
how do the pros do it?Spunout
Apr 3, 2003 8:40 AM
Seamless white background. Then using a horizontal tripod, hold up the bike from under the seat. In digital editing, just use rubber stamp in photoshop to drag the white background over the bikestand. Voila, standless.
how about fishing line?Frith
Apr 3, 2003 9:20 AM
tied to an overhaning branch or something. Two lines coming down, one for the seat one for the stem. I think the visibility would depend on the light but if you got the right angle and/or the right light it could be pretty seamless.
True, but we're all digital here, so smudge out the lines IMO nmSpunout
Apr 3, 2003 9:34 AM
actually your lemond...Frith
Apr 3, 2003 9:59 AM
is one of the nicest pics I've seen posted here. I plan on doing something similar when I get my new marinoni fixie built up. I've been meaning to ask. Did you take that on parlaiment hill? It looks like the tulip festival. and yeah smudge out any glare from the fishing line would be easy.
Dow's Lake is my back yard. Great all year. Pic and hints..Spunout
Apr 3, 2003 10:11 AM
I used a polarizer with Fuji Provia film, so it gets a bit snappy with the colours. I used fill flash, but probably didn't have to.

Maybe at home I will digitally remove the lamp post and see how that works.

Depth of Field: If you can control this, notice how the bike stands out against the background because of the shallow DOF used. Probably 50mm@f4 for this one.
Not white ...Humma Hah
Apr 3, 2003 9:37 AM
My Nikon F4 might be able to deal with a white backdrop, if I fiddle with it enough and try bracket shots, but most cameras can't, and will try to turn the white sheet 18% gray.

A light blue sheet or other light pastel will probably work better.
Flashmeter, or overexpose 2 stops for white background.Spunout
Apr 3, 2003 10:14 AM
Using a flexible formica background works best.
...on the bed...filtersweep
Apr 3, 2003 8:39 AM
...with soft lighting
Obvious bike porn. Doug, delete this!Humma Hah
Apr 3, 2003 9:38 AM
Use an attractive backdrop. . .js5280
Apr 3, 2003 8:33 AM
If a women isn't handy, go for scenery. . .
Iraq? ;-) nmDougSloan
Apr 3, 2003 8:36 AM
Airborne in the desert! I'd realistically guess Colorado NM. nmBrooks
Apr 3, 2003 8:47 AM
The US military's top secret weapon- The stealth Zeppelin (nm)js5280
Apr 3, 2003 9:12 AM
Obvious, but unmentioned:4bykn
Apr 3, 2003 9:31 AM
All good tips, but don't forget: take the photo from the drive side! I also suspect natural lighting would work best, all the polished pieces on a bike would reflect the flash.
re: best way to display bikes for photos?cycling6500
Apr 3, 2003 10:52 AM
I took many photos in different settings and chose a few. It's easier with a digital camera.
re: best way to display bikes for photos?The Walrus
Apr 3, 2003 12:28 PM
I prefer to take photos of the bike(s) when I'm on a ride, so I vote for outdoor shots--just prop it up on whatever's handy.
nice lookin' rig nmJS Haiku Shop
Apr 3, 2003 12:32 PM
Thanks! (nm)The Walrus
Apr 3, 2003 1:12 PM
re: what Graham said...Akirasho
Apr 3, 2003 1:22 PM
... funny, but on one WCP video, as part of the end filler, Graham Watson said that his least favorite type of cycling photography was a static bike shot...

As illustrated by some of the photos in this thread, there's room for artistic license... but I still think that it should be drive side... or near enuff...

Be the bike.
against a cardboard box, works for Garynutmegger
Apr 3, 2003 3:12 PM