Behind the Lens - Paris Gore

Dec 19, 2013
by Scott Secco  

Zink doing the impossible off the Oakley sender during his first and only run. With his wife at the bottom two days out from giving birth it s been a big week for the Zink family and soon to be
Kelly McGarry full sequence over the canyon gap surprising the entire world with his massive flip.

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I’m 21 years old residing in Bellingham, Washington. Growing up in the PNW (Pacific Northwest) couldn’t have been better and I’m really happy to be in such an amazing place.

How long have you been shooting photos?

Suppose it’s been about seven years now starting out in high school with a Nikon D200. A few years later I discovered a passion for shooting mountain biking and everything else started to get put on the back burner.

Bryn Atkinson has been training hard on the trail bike up in Seattle s misty mountains.
Steven Bafus

How long have you been shooting mountain biking?

Around five years, two of which have been professionally.

Do you ride yourself? How does this affect your images?

Absolutely. I don’t think I would be where I am without mountain biking. Being an avid mountain biker really helps in many different ways. Many times I will see a feature and imagine how I would be riding it, which helps me communicate to the athlete what the vision is.

Do you shoot anything else besides mountain biking?

Fly-fishing and snowboarding are two others I’m working towards currently, it’s always good to train your eye in other ways and do something different.

Were you self-taught of have you had any formal training?

Mostly self-taught, but I did graduate recently from a two year Commercial Photography program in Seattle. Having the extra education on lighting skills and business behind photography has really progressed my career.

Gully blasting into the last rays of light in Kamloops.
Sarah Leishman and Andrew Gunn

Do you have a second job or are you a full time photographer?

Full-time since 2011.

What is your favorite thing to shoot?

Mountain biking is where I started and will always love to shoot, but snowboarding and fly-fishing are the two other subjects I enjoy shooting. Having a good balance of subjects helps you keep sane and not get pigeonholed into one sport.

 Sometimes when you think you re going to have a bad day you have a good day. I m feeling pretty shitty so hopefully I ll ride well. Gully rode well. Top 10 on the day.
Kelly McGarry and the other riders take to the shade in the high heat between events.

You became a regular contributing photographer for Pinkbike this year. What’s it like covering events like Joyride and World Cup races?

Events like Red Bull Rampage, Joyride, and the World Cup’s are intense for sure. They really test your skills, ability to think on the fly and challenge yourself in each situation. You really have to push yourself creatively in order to perform in a unique way.

World Cup racing has been shot for years by some of the sport’s best photographers. How do you set your work apart?

Coming into the World Cup scene has been an incredible experience; a lot of the courses only offer a handful of features to shoot. Finding that “Iconic” shot is a true challenge, and you have to get pretty creative. Otherwise you will end up with the same shots as someone else.

Sik Mik has always been milliseconds behind and wants a win badly. The Aussie has been staying low and pinned this week. If the weather isn t much different tomorrow he will be taking the day off to rest his muscles and prep for Sunday.

Where is the most exotic place you’ve shot? Was there any culture shock?

South Africa by far, wasn’t really sure what to expect there but was completely humbled by how welcoming the locals were.

What kind of camera do you use? What lenses? Is there any other gear that you use frequently?

Nikon D4 and D3, 70-200 2.8, 24mm 1.4, 16mm Fisheye, 24-70mm 2.8 and 14-24mm 2.8 for the main gear. I have F-Stop Gear camera bags to keep everything safe, Elinchrom Ranger strobes, Pocketwizards and an assortment of other gear. Most importantly, a stash of snacks and Clif Bars really makes the day productive.

Stevie Smith Paris Gore Red Bull Content Pool
Steven Bafus

You’re known as a photographer but have you shot any video?

A little bit, but will be mainly focusing on stills for 2014. Always interested in video as a producer, and who knows, times change.

Do you think that photography and video will remain separate professions or will new camera technology force professionals to learn both skill sets?

It’s important to understand and respect each, but I don’t think having a single talent will die out. Doing one thing well is much more important than half assing the other.

Callum Jelley setting in a Utah style freeride line outside of his hometown of Ripon or better known as the Shire.
Deep in the moss in Orcas Island.

Do you ever shoot on film?

I do, I have a Nikon F100, and a large pile of disposable cameras. Film is great but I definitely don’t spend enough time using it to say I’m an expert.

What photo are you most proud of? Why?

Couldn’t narrow it down to any single image, they all have their place in my heart.

Out in the sound. Rilor drops in on one of the bays epic views.
Into the mist -

Which photographers inspire you?

Guys like Sterling Lorence, Mattias Fredrickson, and many others have always inspired me to push myself to new limits. I’ve been fortunate enough to personally know people like Tim Zimmerman, Colin Meagher, Caveman and so many others that have helped me out with my career and can’t thank them enough.

Who are some of the clients you’ve worked with?

I’ve worked closely with Pinkbike for a few years, which has been a great experience and Freehub Magazine on the print side of things. Commercially I’m always adding new names to the list but a few are Red Bull, Bell Helmets, Fox Head, Trek Bicycles and Maxxis.

Greg Minnaar fresh off his World Championship title took minimal runs today but looked good from underneath the bridge from the troll view.
Steven Bafus rides the infamous cowboy hat in Seattle.

You've had photos in Pinkbike's Photo of the Year and the Red Bull Illume contests. How do you choose the images you submit? How does it feel to have your work selected by judges?

For contests such as these I generally come up with 20 - 30 images that I really feel strongly about and then start narrowing them down to best suit the format. With Red Bull Illume I actually shot that photo for the contest knowing the cowboy hat was a unique feature and would portray well in the "Playgrounds" Category. Pink Bike Photo of the Year is a different beast, since there's only one winner you really have to factor in all the different aspects that make up a great image. My decision making process for this incorporates creativity, lighting, technicality, and raw emotion.

Do you think photography is too subjective to be judged fairly or do you like the competitive aspect?

While photography is a subjective medium, I like the challenge of participating in contests as they push your skills not just as a photographer, but as a producer, ability to think on the fly and so many other factors that come into play. I really love contests like Photo of the Year and Deep Summer as they highlight the best talent our industry has to offer, however given the the large pool of talent and styles out there, a clear winner is often hard to choose.

Anything else we should know about you?

I’ve always been a big believer in challenging yourself and doing what makes you happy in life. Whatever that may be, it’s not as far off as you might think. You might go flat broke trying, but it’s all worth it in the end.

Pinkbike // Paris Gore
Portrait of Paris: Amelia Colasurdo

Past Photographer Interviews:

Behind the Lens - Erik Holperl
Behind the Lens - Steve Lloyd
Behind the Lens - Garrett Grove
Behind the Lens - Mike Zinger
Behind the Lens - Joakim Andreassen
Behind the Lens - John Wellburn
Behind the Lens - Kuba Konwent
Behind the Lens - Bruno Long
Behind the Lens - Christophe Bortels
Behind the Lens - Norbert-Szasz
Behind the Lens - Christoph Laue
Behind the Lens - Lars Scharl
Behind the Lens - Mattias Fredriksson
Behind the Lens - Marc Landry
Behind the Lens - Reuben Krabbe
Behind the Lens - Ale Di Lullo
Behind the Lens - Sebas Romero
Behind the Lens - Sven Martin
Behind the Lens - Baxter Redfern
Behind the Lens - Fraser Britton
Behind the Lens - Margus Riga
Behind the Lens - Justin Brantley
Behind the Lens - Ian Hylands
Behind the Lens - Keith Valentine
Behind the Lens - Thomas Gaffney
Behind the Lens - Jacob Gibbins
Behind the Lens - Eric Palmer


  • 29 2
 Pretty cool that he's only 21. Shows what you can do with talent and lots of passion. I mean, lots of pro riders are even younger but he's got a career that will last a lifetime at an age where lots of people are halfway through college racking up debt trying to do the same thing.
  • 4 22
flag eli146 (Dec 19, 2013 at 10:17) (Below Threshold)
 I personally don't like his style.
  • 12 2
 why do you even take the time to comment then?
  • 2 10
flag eli146 (Dec 19, 2013 at 10:58) (Below Threshold)
 For the banta
  • 2 10
flag eli146 (Dec 19, 2013 at 10:58) (Below Threshold)
 I was talking about his hat.....
  • 7 1
 What? He's 21? Even more jealous of the guy now.
  • 14 0
 Always enjoy Paris' work. A friendly dude too.
  • 1 0
 Agreed he pumps out some amazing photos..great work
  • 1 2
 Second pic of Zink… should have a GOLD background.
  • 9 0
 creepy moustache
  • 2 0
 I think he's goin' for the full beard.
  • 1 0
 Hey Krabbe
  • 3 2
 most mustaches are gross and slimy, but gore's is awesome
  • 3 0
 Paris is a phenomenal photographer and have had the pleasure of shooting with a few times. Great to see him getting the coverage/recognition/jobs he deserves!
  • 4 0
 That photo of Sik Mik! Keep it going, you have tons of talent Paris!
  • 3 0
 This interview made my night. Thanks PB.
  • 1 0
 Yeah Paris!! Stoked to have you around Bham!! Keep one oozing that creativity- your style and unique perspectives really stand out!!
  • 2 0
 Second picture is pretty damn nice.
  • 3 0
 all the pictures are pretty damn nice
  • 1 0
 I swapped my 70-200 f2.8 with a bike 3 years regret tho. sick shots by the way.
  • 2 0
 you should do a behind the lens with Matthew DeLorme!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • 2 1
 Hats off to him on that last picture!
  • 3 3
 Hey! I have one of those lens (14-24). I'm like Paris. Sweet.

That 70-200 is next
  • 2 2
  • 2 0
 Thx PB for the article
  • 2 1
 Awesome photos. Would love to see a btl with Toby Cowley though!
  • 1 0
 I had no idea Paris was from Bellingham and so young, rad!

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