North Shore in 1998 by Sterling Lorence

Jan 26, 2007
by Sterling Lorence  

I get asked all the time if i still shoot film. Answer is, hardly. The Digital workflow is how the business works now and I don't find the time and applications as much to venture back to film stocks. The technological advancements in digital chip technology inside our digital cameras far exceeds the advancements that are being made in film. What I am capable of shooting in low-light conditions on the Shore today digitally versus the poor looking high iso films stocks of the past is laughable. However, I did shoot film and shot lots of it and did discover ways to make the most of the available films. Black and white films were one way to capture the Shore, and i loved the feel it gave to the Shore.

  My career in mountain bike photography is entering into year fourteen and if you look into my files of photos, you will find more images on film than you will find digital. I still love the look and feel of film, and the printing process and really appreciate how organic that process was in terms of not having to spend hours on the computer tweaking your raw file to 'make it' look like film. Nailing it on film was part of the expertise and art and it is slowly becoming a lost art today. So, to celebrate the film days, and to also look back into where I have roamed, I have chosen to share some shots from the first roll of black and white film that I ever shot specific to mountain biking and the attempt of getting publishable shots.

  My riding buddies, Eric Vandrimmelen and Scott Grieve volunteered their talents as shore riders and we made our way down and through Pre-Reaper with my one roll of Kodak Tri-X 400 (pushed +2 to 1600) in the chamber of my camera. As it turns out, two images off this first roll have become iconic images for my career and images that have been published all over the world many times. Images that I was proud of, was inspired by, and felt that they expressed the true feelings of what it was like to ride on the shore more than 13 years ago. I also have lots to owe to trail builder and rider legend Dangerous Dan Cowan...his riding, imagination, and trail building skills provided loads of content and stoke. Here is a look at Pre-Reaper Trail from start to finish, through my rookie photographic eyes, back in 1998.









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