Cycling, Photography

Criterium Continues in Portarlington

Coming into the CornerThe Mitchelton Bay Cycling Classic continued on to Portarlington yesterday.  Another wonderful day as far as the weather went.  Blue skies with lots of fluffy clouds.  Perfect for taking photos.  I have some more for you today, I hope you aren’t getting too bored with them.

I look at the images and think I could do this or that to them, but right now there is no time, I am having a hard time just getting the posts done each day, no time for fancy editing.

The image above was taken from ground level, well almost, and she was coming into the corner.  I love shots like these, and I am getting the impression you do as well.

Coming out of the CornerFor me, this is a fantastic shot, there are lots of cyclists around, but you really only see one.  It is also a very hard shot to get.  You have to be good at panning, but more on that tomorrow.

While there yesterday, I decided to play with my Holga lens and the fish-eye attachment that I got with it.  I really haven’t done that enough, so I wanted to see if it was possible with cycling.

Through the HolgaThis is probably the best shot I got.  It doesn’t do very well with speed.  It was so hard to get shots that were in focus.  Perhaps it is more of a still life sort of camera, good for things that aren’t moving.

Holga Fish-EyeThis was with the fish-eye attachment, which worked better.  Though it was better conditions as well.  Great effect and I might have to try it more, but not today.

I just want to show you two images that I have did some editing to, but not a lot.  The next two images were taken on the first day in Geelong.

EmmaThis is Emma, she is only 15 and racing with the Elite women, pretty amazing for a girl so young.  I don’t know if many of you are aware of this, but juniors have to race on restricted gearing, I think it is to protect them, so they don’t get injured from pushing really big gears before their bodies are ready.  It also puts them on a fairly fair playing ground with their peers.  Emma is Under 17, so she rides with restricted gearing, even when she is the only one, her gears are still restricted. A tough ask, but it was great to see her out there doing what she could.

LaraThis is Lara and she is from NSW.  She has recently gone up to U19, so gears still restricted, though not much.

With these last two images I have just blurred the back grounds, more to make them stand out.  I wanted to make them the focus of the images.   These are more individual portrait shots, I would call them, rather than shots of the racing.

Today is the last day.  We are off to Williamstown today.  It is going to be hot, 36C or 97F, so not great, but we are expecting southerly sea breezes, so that should make it bearable.  Williamstown always has massive crowds, so it should make for an interesting day.  Am I looking forward to it, I don’t know.


  1. More GREAT images!!! Love the ‘movement’ captures, Leanne…and in the Holga shot, the guy’s nose is very crisp smack dab in the middle of a radial blur—fantastic! And…some very fine processing on the ‘portraits’…really well-done!

    Anticipation is make me antsy…I imagine more of the same stunning shots in Williamstown?

    • It is a strange lens, I really should take it out more, I might make it my goal this week. That photo with the holga is the only one that work, I haven’t done anything else to it, that is exactly how it was taken. The rest were so blurring, you could hardly make them out.
      Thanks 1000, hope you liked the ones from Williamstown.

  2. I’ll take the 97F, great shots as always. The third from top is great!

  3. Having no photography experience myself, I really love seeing your process and thoughts with these. it’s really cool to see some of these “rough” without editing. Keep up the great work!

  4. I love that first Holga shot. It truly shows the speed and i love the feather effect on the main biker’s helmet. To me, this picture really says they are flying.
    Of course, I could be wrong. :)

    • No, you are right, they were flying, up the front straight. Which is part of the reason why it was so hard to get great shots with the Holga, it really isn’t for fast moving objects. :)

  5. Great shots…don’t know if you could have made them any better “tinkering” with them on your computer, but these are fine as is… :-)

    • I have tried tinkering with the cycling shots, but there isn’t a lot you can do with them really, you have to be careful.

  6. Fabulous, Leanne…I agree with the others on that third shot – it shows the motion like nothing else!
    It’s interesting to see the contrast between the ones you edited, and the ones that you captured in-camera.
    Get some rest, now – you EARNED it! :D

    • Thanks Marie, it is hard to do any editing to them, it is a case of it you do too much then you end up taking away what was good about the image in the first place. Though I just got an idea that I might try.
      I got plenty of rest, thanks.

  7. Very nice, Leanne. I really, really like this series of shots. Possibly because (as you said) they are more portrait-like shots which is more my bent. That fisheye lens is really interesting too. Worth trying some more I’d agree. I don’t envy the weather you guys are having down there though. Get on that sunscreen, or, better yet hide in some air-conditioned hole somewhere.

    • I managed not to get too badly sunburnt, I missed a couple of places with the sunscreen, but did pretty good, the sun is so strong, it doesn’t take much to get burnt in it.
      You’ve done some cycling as well haven’t you? I like photographing this kind of cycling.

  8. Oh man! I love love love ALL of your shots, but the action one (warp-speed effect) REALLY is COOL! You rock!

  9. wow…wonderful shots Leanne…I think the first and third are favourites…I love the bright colours and crispness of the photos, even the pan shots.

  10. The first one really stands out from the rest (in my eyes). It shows the hard determination and power of the cyklist and the angle is great.

  11. Fantastic shots: I like how you’re “right in the corner” with the bike rider, and the blurs of the next three – especially in the third photo.

    Your biking photos has given me the notion of taking similar shots should the US Pro Cycling Tour come back through Colorado Springs in August. The lack of parking has been issue when the race came through, very discouraging on that level.

    • Yes, David have a go, I did a post on photographing cycling, so I hope you got some tips, but if you want to know anything else, just ask.

  12. I do a little bit of amateur bike racing, and I’ve purchased pictures from professional photography studios of the races. Your photos are spectacular. I especially appreciate the top photo.

    • Thanks Rick, though it is easy to get some fantastic shots when you are only looking for a few. I probably took about 700 each day, but am very happy that people have liked them.

  13. My favourite of this series would have to be the third one Leanne. I love that it suggests the speed at which the cyclists are going.

    • I don’t photograph it very much anymore, which is a shame in some ways, but it was really nice to be doing it for myself and no one else.

  14. That second photo from the top … is priceless … I wouldn’t mind that on a wall *smile Woman you are so talent !!!!

  15. love cycling. i would be doing more of it. but bitter winter wind isn’t so inviting especially at 15-20 mph! i’m curious you mounted the fish eye and holga to a dslr body? great shots by the way. the lighting is nice. love how you explored with panning and that one shot of the zoom in/out I think.

    • You can buy holga lens for your DSLR now, I got one for Nikon and bought the fish eye as an extra. I don’t know how they compare with normal holgas but they are fun.
      We get a lot of northern hemisphere riders, well pro ones, coming here for the summer so they can keep riding. Of course we have that major race to, the Tour Down Under, which starts in a week or so.

    • It was actually really lovely to go to an event where I knew I would just be photographing it for you guys, and I took what I wanted to take, makes a massive difference.

  16. Wow, great range between crystal-clear, almost stop-action in the first shot to the rush of motion in the third! I like the second one best — the blur of the background and other cyclists convey the motion, but the sharp focus lets you identify with the lone cyclist who was your subject. Good stuff!

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