2013 Photo of the Year is...

Nov 27, 2013
by Karl Burkat  
 
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After a record number of votes again this year, we're pleased to announce that Sterling Lorence has won the 2013 Specialized Photo of the Year Powered by SRAM by a pretty slim margin over Reuben Krabbe (50.6% - 49.4%). First place will bring him a nice check of $7500 and a 2014 Specialized Demo fully decked out in SRAM kit. While Reuben walks away with a not-too-shabby $2500. Thanks to all the photographers for making the sport look incredible and sharing their work for all of us to enjoy. Looks like Sterl will have to take his family to Disneyland now!

The 2013 Photo of the Year

Thomas Vanderham drifts through a berm in the Kamloops Bike Ranch BC.

Thanks to Specialized Bikes and SRAM.
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165 Comments

  • + 174
 well deserved, kudos to all the other entrants, some amazing photographers documenting our sport.
  • + 25
 Wow Such a close pole with a difference of .6% this year was tight
  • + 3
 great photo definitely deserves photo of the year
  • + 99
 meh... you can all go with the safe responses but even though this is a sick photo, it's still within a controlled setting without that sense of adventure that I associate with mtbing. Opinions, everyone has one and I hope people will share theirs instead of praising a photo that is clearly a pic that a majority of members on this site enjoy. btw sick photo coupled with amazing riding that'll most likely go overlooked... peacocks are such cool creatures.
  • + 18
 Cats have fur
  • + 7
 Dogs have fur
  • + 9
 @DUTH5 1.2% actually
  • + 3
 @scott-townes
Its no more a controlled setting than Rubens photo IMO (or most every one, if not all of the 32 finalists truth be told). As far as I'm concerned you have to take any photo on its own merits and both the finalists this year were great shots regardless of their differing settings/locations/styles etc...
  • - 7
flag scott-townes (Nov 28, 2013 at 1:29) (Below Threshold)
 ^ You're over looking one major aspect which is that people cannot control the weather which plays a major part in many of the photos... unless you choose to film in a DESERT such as the KAMLOOPS which they've both been known for many years to be freeriding destinations but with no crowds because kids will only get into biking if there's a f*cking chairlift involved.


It's one of the best action shots but that's because of the dramatic effects of the moon dust.
  • + 11
 @skootur and @scott-townes, in fact, @everybody.

One thing that has struck me about "photo of the year", or in fact any one of tens, possibly hundreds of photo journals/essays/pieces is how precise the set up of the shots are; there is very, very little that is not contrived. The lines, the booters, the landings, the whole deal. If you cannot take a good picture worthy of photo of the year with all that infrastructure behind you, who can?
Want an example?
Sure, take the recent example of the shoot of Hunter and Bearclaw (www.pinkbike.com/news/Pretty-Good-For-10-Year-Olds-matt-hunter-darren-berrecloth-video-2013.html), that coincidentally is photographed by Sterling Lawrence, and you will see what I mean.
The shots are, as some may say, "dope" or "sick" or whatever other word has been cajoled into submission as an adjective and I for one love looking at the "art" that can be created by the work of riders, builders and photographers in their search for a shot that defines what "freeride" or "mountain biking" or "insert tag here" means to them.
  • + 16
 cont...
There is however another category of photos. Those are in no way contrived. Since there is not the chance for them to ever be repeated and those are the racing photos; the event photos, the photos of mountain biking as it is happening, as it happens and as it disappears into the ether.And there are a small army of photographers who document those events without the budget, support or luxury of trying again til they get the "perfect" shot.
I have a friend here in Japan, DSK san, who is known to thousands of people here, who is just one of that small army. He is a dad, husband and salaried employee by day and a photographer by all other measures and he travels the length and breadth of Japan to document the riders and events of the world of Japanese MTB. If you have been to an event here, you will have seen him even though you many not have realized it. Go to the JDH? He's there. XC? He's there. Cyclocross? He's there. BMX, oh he's there all right, since he has just been to New Zealand as the over 40s crusier champion and Japanese representative at the World BMX championships because not only can he take great shots, he can ride better than you or me too!
Last week he got a fair few stitches in his lip and jaw after a min-motocross rider decided to use him to break their fall yet he is back out their this weekend in the cold and rain to get more shots of the kids at the National BMX 4X events in Kuwana in Japan.
So, here's a call to the industry, do not forget those photographers either you hear. How about a contest for them?
Here's a link to one of my favorite DSK shots from last years ML Open short DH series; sums up MTB to me.
www.flickr.com/photos/dsk24/8397779939
  • + 6
 @orientdave I hear you, like this photo of the decade entry; www.pinkbike.com/photo/10159873/#top dirt, bike, crazy frenchman and a camera
  • + 2
 Good picture but I agree with Dave. I've been shooting skateboarding and long boarding for the past year, now moving into MTB I am part of the small army, I travel quiet a bit for the events, and next year you can catch me at iXS in Czech, Germany, Austria, and maybe Italy.
  • + 8
 @orientdave Yes, you said exactly what was on my mind! During the contest I was looking over which photographers were in the contest and while I cannot speak about nearly all of them, there were a good few that are well established in the mountain bike community and as professional photographers from what I can see. And while hosting this contest for them and give something back to them is f*cking rad, I would like to see a contest for all of the up and comers. The guys that you speak of that work a 9-5 job just to support their passion as a photographer, that don't have access to the time and resources that some of these guys do.
  • + 3
 I think part of what Dave is referring to is the sentimental value of a picture. You know when you get a shot of yourself in a race or newly conquered feature and you think its the raddest pic ever! Well, sometimes no one else thinks so. The thing thats cool about these POY photos is that I can show them to my wife (who isnt into mtb) and she can appreciate the moment captured on film or the artistic angle captured for something so few people truly understand. Thats what photography is all about. Its all of those elements combined. Its not a "you had to be there" moment or "you just dont understand the sport" kind of picture. It captures the feeling of the moment or the mystery of the landscape, or the aggression of the rider or split second moment in time that you never knew existed and communicates it to the viewer. Each shot has a different flavor and I was super stoked to see what was on display this year. Good job Lorence. You deserve it!
  • + 0
 @Bmar Photography has its many different elements bmar, and as you say, the aggression of the rider or the split second in time that is communicated to the viewer are valuable aspects of the art of photography. The POTY contest is a great place for everyone to showcase and vote for the images that they feel best represents their view of the world of MTB and I for one voted in every round, enjoyed doing so, and earmarked Lorence's photo as the one that would be voted to first spot by the PB crowd. However, please do not suggest that I am referring to some kind of sentimental imagery of that shot of yourself that you think looks "rad"; we all know, or should do, that is is far from it. No, read what I wrote again if you need to. I am talking about the photos that Sven Martin, or Duncan Philpot have been known to take... At races. Race photography cannot be sculpted with acres of cabling, lighting, build crews and obliging riders who will go one more time for you to get that shot. Are you suggesting that Sven Martin is a sentimental photographer? no, I don't think you are either, so neither am I.
  • + 2
 A lot of event photos, including the album you posted are "you had to be there" photos. I only had to look at a few photos before I was bored with them. Unless Sven Martin used a cable cam for those shots, then no... But there are some pretty amazing event photos out there.
  • + 0
 So forgive me people for the multiple posts, however I have a question for you all. Is there inherently greater value in a photo that captures an essential moment as it happens, rather than in trying to create that moment to then subsequently capture? History is littered with the detritus of debate on the very same theme. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raising_the_Flag_on_Iwo_Jima is just one example of how we usually demand our photos to be genuine (and please have the decency to read that wiki link before you comment on it).
So, how about the world of MTB. Does staged photo sit OK with you, or do you see there being a different level of inherent worth in a photo that is not?
  • + 10
 Krabbs got robbed...
  • - 1
 Yes bmar, there are some amazing event photos out there are that is what I hoped you realize I was referring to, yet obviously that got lost somewhere along the way. It is that small army of photographers, from the DSK sans all the way through to the Sven Martins of this world who are taking shots without the infrastructure, the budgets, the crews or the opportunity to scope locations, build roost filled corners, drops, boosters and transitions, who make a relative silk purse out of a relative sow's ear when compared to the facilities made available to photo-shoot photographers. If, and it is a very big if, your wife looks at the POTY photos and thinks that is what we all do at the weekends, then who is fooling who?
  • + 3
 Disappointment
  • - 11
flag hankbrowne (Nov 28, 2013 at 7:38) (Below Threshold)
 Listen to all these IDIOTS! ha...GET A LIFE.
  • + 15
 ^ We do have lives... they just happen to heavily rotate around biking. Happy native massacre day!!!
  • + 8
 While things have changed since I took my photo that was in this contest, that is EXACTLY what I was doing at the time the photo was taken.... Making excuses doesn't take you better photos. Being "pro" didn't make my photo, Reuben's, or Sterl's possible. Being dedicated to our craft and putting in the extra time and effort did.
  • - 1
 Don't explain yourself, its beyond their minds.
  • + 6
 And I shoot events alimony exclusively, yet still manage to get out and explore new places with friends and try new things with photography away from events. OrientDave I fail to see any merit to your argument whatsoever, and can use my own real life experience as the reason.
  • + 2
 ^^^Almost exclusively
  • - 3
 Davetrump, I don't have an argument, so aim not surprised you don't see any merit in it. Are you saying race photography and photo shoot photography are the same thing?
  • - 3
 @hankbrowne, oh you'd be surprised sir what my mind can get itself around. Go on, try me.
  • + 9
 They are different environments and situations in which we shoot. But doing one doesn't mean you can't do another, and most if not all the pro guys in this contest also shoot events most of the year. Myself, Paris, LCE, Duncan and so on. There is no grand infrastructure or budget or smoke and mirrors behind photos hoots either. Often times it is on the photographer and riders dime, workin together to come up with an idea. If they get it right they might be able to generate revenue from it. My point is you and a bunch of other people here seem to make excuses for everyone else who isn't at the top of the game, but as Sterl pointed out there are no pro photographs, just photos that do or don't create a positive experience for the viewer. And saying event photography is harder is just silly. With hundreds of riders and multiple days you have plenty of opportunity to get shots, and plenty of opportunity to do photo shoots between events. Like I said, I was working a full time job up until part way through this past summer, I took my POY photo on a weekend with a local university student on a weekend on a local trail, I shoot events almost exclusively, and still find time to shoot commercially and for fun. I never made excuses, I just worked really damn hard to make this a full time job, and believe me non of us are rolling in money as MTB photography is not all Gucci watches and other people's gold cards.
  • - 2
 Thanks Dave, I really appreciate the time you spent on that. thanks. I find it interesting that you do not see then much difference between a race and an opportunity to set up shots in a way you have more control over. Please do not misconstrue what aim saying as an "excuse for everyone else who isn't at the top of the game", personally I couldn't give a monkeys who is at the top of the game so be careful what you suggest there Sir. To me, as a non-photographer who loves photography, I see a very big difference between what a photographer can achieve by acting as an observer to the events unfolding in front of their viewfinder and a photographer who is creating an event to photograph. If you wish to get into a comparison and contrast of the two, I would be very interested to hear how you, as a photographer, see the two. are they mutually exclusive? Can they be considered different, and if not, why not? What is the role of a documentary photographer and is their role different to that of a studio photographer? I do not doubt the levels of effort given by each kind of photographer by the way, but that does not preclude their being different
  • + 2
 ^ One of my buds is on the same level of recognition as Sterling but in another sport and he has to work his ass off just to make ends meet. People don't seem to realize that being a "pro" at whatever, doesn't mean you're set for life. Any kind of "performance" based career surrounding action sports is such a gamble and you have to work your ass off, even when you have "made it".
  • - 4
flag sessionman123abc (Nov 28, 2013 at 8:34) (Below Threshold)
 no way, this photo sucks.
  • - 3
 Look people, gloves off time, and time to educate ourselves, and that iincludes all you photographers out there too,who should know this anyways. You are all aware that all photography is a subjective form of representation right. Only there will be different levels of that subjectivity. My initial comment way up the top here is about the inherent nature of variations in the levels of subjectivity within the various approaches that can be taken when asking yourself, as a photographer, what levels of subjectivity you are prepared to accept in an attempt to faithfully represent an idea to the viewer. However, viewers are often likely to desire similar levels of subjectivity to photographs without a full consideration of the nature of the relationship between subject and object. These variations in the subjectivity of all photography creates a tension when attempting to offer a value judgement as to the relative merits of individual photographs. One of the ways in which that subjectivity can be reduced is to offer a category or Racing Photos. I'd like to see that. Goodnight.
  • + 2
 We really appreciate all that hard work davetrump, and all the others out there. Keep doin what you do.
  • - 3
 @DUTH5 @dhftw1231

1.0% actually... But whose counting, it was a close one!
  • + 0
 You're brave to enter this fray @davetrump. I dig your work by the way. As you know, What people refuse to acknowledge is that photography, is incredibly difficult, often stressful, but almost always fulfilling. It's difficult to hear those who haven't taken the leap complain about not having more opportunity. As you know, it's scary as hell to make the leap. The 9-5er who wants reciprocal recognition for their photography neglects to accept that they are afforded a luxury of consistent paycheck & security that those who have committed to photography do not have. At the end of the day, everyone wants respect. It's about personal responsibility. If any of you out there want to make it happen, then make it happen. Or don't. But know it's all up to you... It's Not your equipment, your access to pro riders, your obligation to a job, or anything else. Those are excuses for your unwillingness to make the terrifying leap to follow your dreams.
  • - 1
 1.2% actually
  • + 0
 @daves it's all about observer vs. interactor ... should a photographer interact with the subject, or just observe an document? I prefer the later, but both is ok and can generate great pictures.
aand goodnight from europe ;-)
  • - 2
 trailynx... thank you. aaand good morning from the East. You have distilled what I have been trying to say into a simple sentence that hopefully more people here can understand than they could my attempts, and I could not agree more.

Documentary photography is about the "things as they are, about discovery, not about creation". It is inherently different to "being in command of the process of creation". Documentary photography is mainly concerned with reflecting what is out there. If you are creating what is out there, it is a separate discipline whereby you artistically arrange the world according to what you want to see. I appreciate the validity of both types, as do I suspect the vast majority of us here. There is though, as a result, a tension in the POTY contest, since it mixes the two genres. Yes, Davetrump, both genres require dedication and photographers are free to focus on one, or both at different times, and no-one is judging the authenticity of either genre, however, the two genres ARE different. There is a case for suggesting that POTY could be split into those two genres. Will it be? Probably not, however, where people begin to discuss which images are "best", an understanding of the two genres helps one to understand that there are no absolutes.
  • - 3
 Believe me, we all understand your opinion on the subject now. But as for anyone who wants to take on your lengthy, overly wordy 'argument' about which type of photography is 'true' photography? It doesn't appear that anyone wants to take the bait. Not even Mr. Trumpore. Smile
  • + 4
 If you scroll up, you'll see the Pinkbike novel section starring orientdave
  • + 1
 @samtomkins look again buddy
  • + 2
 thats a lot of dead presidents.
  • - 3
 @orientdave....dude stop with the f*ckin essay length comments
  • - 1
 Dude, We can do what we like since this isn't the twitter sphere. You can write one word comments if you like. I prefer not to.
  • - 4
flag ambatt (Nov 29, 2013 at 15:50) (Below Threshold)
 And for being honestly funny, ambatt gets.... (Drumroll, please).... Big, fat neg props! Ha ha.
  • + 37
 The contest had to be rigged. CG should have had it. www.pinkbike.com/photo/10227758
  • + 19
 congrats to the winner, but ideally would like to see an AMATURE category as well as this OPEN one so that regular weekend warriors can compete on an even field against eachother. Not many make it their job, have access to light meters, staged settings, high end gear and endless re-takes with top freeriders. I love their pics but think that 2 classes would make it better for all the other million pions on PB, to have a chance
  • + 10
 You just listed off a bunch of things you don't need to take great photos. Go look up what a d700 and a 50mm lens goes for that took Reuben's shot. And you could put any handful of riders in there in what is a public an legal trail. For about $1500 in gear you could take that shot with your friends.... Lets have some respect here for TALENT, that's what makes great photos, not a label of Pro or am or a pile of expensive gear. There were photos in the top 32 taken by amateurs and hobbyists on very inexpensive gear, and honestly there ate probably only 10 folks in the contest who actually make a living from photography. Again, your argument is more of an excuse than anything else.
  • + 2
 Well said sir. Photography at it's core is an art - the camera (and all of the related lights and gizmos) is just the tool. Like any art, the more you practice, the better you get. No one moans about a painter using a more expensive brush to create a masterpiece. It is the skill of the person behind the lens which makes the photo, you can spend $10,000 on gear and still take a crap photo if you don't know how to use it.
  • + 4
 Photography is an art form, it's subjective. The vision of the artist and how well that artist brings his or her vision to a reality will always be the determining factor between something amazing and something "ok". The Mona Lisa was made on a plain piece of canvas stretched over a wood frame with a couple dollars worth of paint. I was a finalist in 2011 & 2012, both of the images that made it in were made using a nikon d200 and a kit lens (If I tried to sell it right now I'd maybe get $500 for the set up). When I found out I made it in the previous years the thing that meant the most to me was the fact the guys I've looked up to as a photographer (Sterling, Harookz, Hylands to name a few) chose my photo as a potential piece of imagery to reflect an entire year of our sport. No matter how big the prize is, the fact that I'll have had the opportunity to have my photography represent our sport, amongst such amazing photographers will always big enough of a reward for me.

Also in my opinion there's also no need for a amateur segment because anyone can have their photo nominated to begin with. That being said its also easy to forget that Pinkbike is the biggest online presence for our sport. So when deciding a photo of the year there is a lot of prestige attributed to that title, and I think it's important to have high caliber judging to maintain that. I feel an amateur contest would draw in alot of people entering simply with the intention of taking a "cool" photo to win a bike and some cash. Frankly there are plenty of other photo contests hosted on this site each year with sweet prizes for that. (To me) This contest is for photographers (pro and amateur alike) that are truly passionate about creating images that intrigue and inspire us to get out on our bikes and explore, and rewarding them for their hard work.
  • + 14
 Its official - 50.6% of the people on here suck. Out of all the beautiful shots, especially Reuben's with that amazing light, people choose TLD pajamas roosting a berm. Even Sterl knows what I'm sayin.
  • + 4
 Oh come on, why do you have to be like that.............................they're obviously Dakine pajamas. Smile
  • + 12
 Happy Thanksgiving to all. Here in America it's Thanksgiving Day.
I'm Thankful For:
Pinkbike in General
Pinkbike Administrators
Photo of the Day
Photo of the Year
Video of the Day
Sterling Lorence
All of you Guys

and we got a good POY!
  • + 11
 Next year you could have a best picture from each continent of the world. also combining that with each MTB discipline.
as I really don't think this shot (as good as it is) encompasses the true feeling of MTB.
It does give a really good fun aspect to DH/freeride play, as did last years winner.
Big Mountain views pull at the heart strings. Hence the word MOUNTAIN. in mountain biking
more categories please
  • + 7
 The shot oozes class both in front of and behind the lens. Cannot believe has both feet on the pedals through that roost!!!- so many people would be out of control but he makes it look effortless- like he's just chillin' as his tyres destroy the world. Absolutely love it.
  • - 6
flag Protour (Nov 28, 2013 at 6:10) (Below Threshold)
 It doesn't even look like a natural shot, looks completely artificial; not a real reason to skid.

Imagine this scene:

Rider blows up berm with massive artificial skid for camera.

Sterling Laurence: "Do it again, not enough dirt in the air!"

Rider skids again.

Sterling: "Do it again, missed that one."

This scene repeats itself about 20 times until there is no loose dirt on the berm, so they both get shovels and pile more loose dirt on it for half an hour. Then they are finally ready to take about 10 more photos of the artificial berm blow-up before Sterling says: "The berm needs to be longer, otherwise there won't be enough dirt in the air in the photo."

Rider says "but then it won't really be a berm, just a long pile of loose dirt."

Sterling: "yeah but it will look awesome in the photo!"

They spend another half an hour shoveling loose dirt on the pile and this time they nail it on the first shot. Pinkbike clones impressed with lose dirt, Sterling gets photo of the year.

I pretty much would have been more impressed by any random shot of somebody hucking at Rampage.

I almost confused it with this shot:

theteamrobot.blogspot.com/2013/09/still-on-kill-list-freeriders.html?m=1
  • + 15
 You must be a blast at parties
  • + 2
 If you think that shot is artifical and thomas had to skid to turn up that much dirt then you've obviously never ridden in kamloops mid-summer...
  • + 2
 Sorry man I didn't realise you were there. Ha ha. None of us can guess the techniques and thought processes Sterl went through to get this shot. I'm pretty sure you're wrong tho otherwise you'd be winning POY rather than talking shite on the internet.

I must be honest, I declined to vote in the final as I loved them both. However, you're argument holds no water in my opinion. I am so bored of people moaning about a result VOTED FOR BY THEM. With only a few % in it, there's bound to be people that disagree, but that's why they had a vote- to decide what the majority of people think is POY. If you disagree, it's kinda tough shit. PB aren't gonna turn round and say, 'Shit, Protour is right. We should overrule the vote after being enlightened by his insightful and profound opinions.'
  • + 2
 I must point out my comment was aimed at Protour!- brycepiwek & Young Pedalwon can obviously type faster than me!
  • + 3
 "Just to clarify, the shot of Thomas is in the Kamloops Bike Ranch and was taken on a proper trail in the park. One of the most epic hipping doubles in the park has you merging onto another portion of trail and this is a corning berm drift that you ride through on the trail. No part of the trail was manipulated for this shot, and no damage to the trail was made. When you ride Kamloops after a dry stretch of weather, this is simply the dust factor that occurs here. Thomas two wheel drifts through this section, both feet on, and rides through into the rest of the trail. If anything, the trail is left in better condition than we found it, for he has swept it clean for you..." Sterling Lorence
  • + 9
 All I can think of is what everyone's trails are going to look like when the folks try to do their best Pinkbike Photo of the Year emulation.
  • + 10
 what if the photographers had been anonymous...
  • + 1
 Very good point! Anonymous until eliminated or winner!
  • + 7
 I voted in all the rounds and I don't think I voted for this once. Democracy, got to love it!
  • + 3
 well it wasn't me, cos I didn't vote for it once either. could it be we're outnumbered by 16 year old fanboys?
  • + 4
 What?! thaaaat picture won?! - just kidding, the splendidness of this occurence is beyond words - OZOM! Congratulations Sterling, super happy for you! I love to zoom in into the left part of the picture, it looks like some star dust from gajillions of light years away.
  • + 4
 This is an amazing shot and nobody (least of all me) should ever detract from Sterling's amazing skills and tremendous contributions to the MTB scene. Sincere congrats to Sterling on the win, and the shot really does get me amped up. That said.......Reuben's shot was much more organic and a better representation of what MTB is all about for me. The use of "natural" (read - not staged) terrain and ambient light rather that artificially created conditions is more impressive to me as well. (although nobody is arguing that Sterling can't do that too - the dude is practically the godfather of MTB photography the same way Simmons is the godfather of freeride) Kudos to Reuben for making the final 2, and know that this PB user - and apparently 49.4% of the rest of us as well) thinks he should have taken it home.
  • + 3
 when i first saw this i mistook it for a motocross bike because of the size of the dust cloud! great photo, well done sterling and all the photographers involved in this years POY and all photographers documenting our amazing and diverse sport!
  • + 2
 Every single photo ever created is a manipulation guided by the actions of the person with the camera. Once you turn your camera and aim it at something, anything, you are declaring intention and being selectively creative. A pure, objective photograph is an impossibility. Don't diminish this image because they worked tenaciously to make it a reality. And believe me, after seeing Lorence in action, it's clear he WORKS for his shots. It's a difficult task that few are up to.
  • + 6
 Hugely disappointed and not at all surprised that this photo won.
  • + 7
 Whyyyyyy?
  • + 3
 Great job, it had my vote all the way through. I wish there was a mute button for all the arm-chair photo pros in the peanut gallery. Reading through some of the comments just makes me feel a little bit dumber.
  • + 1
 almost as bad as Wernie on nsmb.
  • + 4
 Dirt explosion!! I voted for the other one but they were both my favorites. Congrats
  • + 1
 Same here. Were my fav's from the start. But had to pick one in the end...
  • + 2
 surprised trumpore didn't make it to finals, huge props to reuben and sterling! those are two amazing photos and as you can see from the .6% difference they were both incredibly close
  • + 1
 The Lorence image takes my breathe away each time I look at it, as all of the finalist have. I think we all need to remember how hard everyone works to fuel our passions, no matter which side of the handlebars we are on at the time. If we are successful and resourceful, we can ride a 10K carbon bike or shoot with a 7K pro body camera looking down a 2k to 14K F2.8 lens with 14 shots per second sounding like shuffling cards at a casino and then dressing up the exposure with awe inspiring color and strobed out flying turf. Congratulations to the best, its what we all inspire to be. I don't think we need to make any of the photographers or riders feel bad for attaining what we all inspire to do.
  • + 1
 Reminds me of a snow board pow shot. It does not look natural. Nor should it its a photograph. Its an interpretation of a moment captured in time. Its art! Even at a glance this pic grabs your attention. Sterling is one of the best MTB photographers. I prefer his early North Shore images.
  • + 1
 In my opinion not everybody has a big badass camera with huge photograph skills and 99% of us do not know a professional rider, the other picture was nicer because it came from a guy who was just having fun in abbotsford and took a great picture without having a pro rider and he also wasn't a pro photographer. They should have this competition fair so that everyone with the passion of biking can win with just using imagination.
  • + 2
 dude, the photographer works for Pinkbike and the rider was Wade Simmons
  • + 2
 upsss my mistake bro, Thanks man
  • + 2
 while my undeniable favorite was the shot by stefcande www.pinkbike.com/photo/10166693, my congrats go to Sterling as one of the all-time best MTB photographers. Good job!
  • + 1
 That was also my absolute favorite! With a difference that close, I would call both top picks picture of the year Smile
  • + 1
 It 's definitely a picture of impact but it is obviously built .. I prefer pictures where it is understood that the gesture is spontaneous .. and then there are too frankly on Pinkbike photo contest in the same year .. there were really innovatiive and interesting but here they always win the same .. sob!
  • + 1
 Why is everyone hating on "well-established" photographers winning? Do any of you actually know a "pro" photographer and what that entails? You all realize that for the most part they are just as broke as the rest of us mountain bikers without the fun of being the subject of the photo? It's art man, its for the love of capturing the moment. If an 'amateur' didn't get in it is because none of you chose to look at their pictures because either A) They weren't great pictures or B) You don't know their names and chose not to sort through all the pics to find theirs. All the pics in this contest were wicked and regardless of the amount of work that went into them they all capture an artists view of some rad shredding.
  • + 3
 Many can replicate that photo...it´s like a studio photo of mtb...not a winning mtb picture..
  • + 3
 meh, it's a good photo but c'mon, there's a million others like it that just aren't quite as well shot, boring!
  • + 2
 As a photo goes; that's amazing.

Keeping the rider perfectly focused while still capturing the movement of the roost.

Kudos where kudos is due.
  • + 2
 Congrats to both of you guys! I loved the depth of field and overall composition of Reuben's shot, but DAT ROOST!
  • + 1
 While I think there are some shots that certainly should have progressed further this shot definitely deserves the win. Now only if PB would release a poster of it...
  • + 2
 I personally thought that the low definition screen shots I took from my videos should have won
  • + 3
 Sterling Lorence + Thomas Vanderham
of course...
  • + 1
 Is it dirt or did the rider just shit himself because he was about to go over the cliff? Such a awesome shot, voted for this all the way.
  • + 1
 Guess all it took to win this year was skidding thru a corner and having somebody there to snap a pic of it. Other pic was better.
  • + 1
 When I look into the flying dirt and dust I see a cat pouncing upon a running gingerbread man engulfed in flames. Time for bed.
  • + 1
 Come on people - give this guy some love and stop whining and arguing ! Awesome shot Sterling. Every time I look at it I get stoked! Congrats on the win.
  • + 1
 Not overwhelmed by this years finalists. Good shots but nothing that blew my my mind. Didn't even get a good desktop background...
  • + 4
 Loz was robbed!
  • + 1
 Agreed.....
  • + 2
 yeah now enjoy demo and cash Big Grin
  • + 1
 can't understand why such erosion is glorified!! Is this moto-x wannabe contest?
  • + 1
 They were both awesome pictures, shown by how close the polls were. Can't wait for next year!
  • + 1
 Vanderchild! Nice Pic!! Congrats to hold the spirit of this wonderful sport in just one picture!
  • + 1
 I was really hoping that pic of me on the toilet smiling would be the winner. I demand a recount!!
  • + 2
 A professsional photographer and pro rider won, yipee
  • + 1
 Why so much hate here? This photo is awesome!! As a photographer I'd be stoked to have taken this shot... Well deserved win!
  • + 1
 I want this printed BIG!! Is there a possibility I could buy it or get the file to have it printed?? Please let me know!
  • + 2
 should not of won , the snowdon one was 10 times better .
  • + 1
 crap. This was a stage, the other was real riding. LAME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • + 1
 se fue al pastooooo la fotooooo grandeee VANDERHAM Y EL FOTOGRAFOOOOOOOOO STERLING LORENCE
  • + 1
 A roost like that deserves recognition! well done and congratulations you guys!
  • + 1
 thanks to specialized and sram... hmff unlucky laurence still think he should have won
  • + 2
 any chance there could be an article on the way its been composed?
  • + 2
 Congrats Sterling! Such a sick shot!
  • + 1
 this photo and the movie arrival, make feel like mountain biking is all about throwing dirt to the air.
  • + 1
 My vote was for Trumpore, but it didn't make it to finals. The water splash + Murica!
  • + 2
 its cool and all but it doesn't really express any realistic riding.
  • + 1
 Nice shot, but its always a disappointment when one of the most well known MTB photographers wins.
  • + 2
 Yes, this one definitely deserves it!! Stunning shot!!
  • + 1
 Wow nobody complained about unessasry roosting omg !!!!!!! Great pic
  • + 1
 Wow that is some amazing stuff
  • + 1
 I think Cedric stole the other shoe ..
  • + 1
 Nice photo shot of the year .......... Congrats !!!
  • + 1
 great photo, however are we rewarding riders destroying the berms ?
  • + 1
 jimmy dog thats a goood picture i love it
  • + 1
 Such a mint pic I bet the dust is still settling....
  • + 1
 congrats to Sterling! POY..
  • + 1
 i think its the perfect shot
  • - 1
 no offense but the colors in krabbes shot were just too artificial and imo plain ugly... glad that Lorence made it, congrats!
  • + 1
 you clearly have no idea at all what you are talking about.
  • + 3
 Em-j the color temp was manipulated quite a bit. Some like it some don't, but it is "artificial". That said it makes the shot and gives it a powerful feeling, so props to Reuben for his choice to process it that way.
  • + 1
 I was more referring to the use of the word ugly, and if we're going to talk artificial, well nothing says it quite like a completely staged shot with artificial lighting like SL's. Technically speaking though, you are correct.
  • + 2
 So em-j what is more real? A photo taken in natural light but then changed dramatically in post processing, or a shot that manipulates light and exposure with the aid of strobes and skill with a camera and its settings, so that what is captured in camera is not manipulated to become something totally different in post?
  • + 1
 "COCKADOODLEDOO"

...the Rooster won
  • + 1
 you spelt check wrong. Its cheque
  • + 2
 Vexed.
  • + 1
 I was so torn. Impossible contest!
  • + 1
 Nice work Sterling/Vanderham, love the photo Smile
  • + 2
 IMO Too contrived
  • + 1
 he already has a rad bike, give it to me!
  • + 1
 Congratulations Sterling! Awesome photo!
  • + 1
 Congrats! Glad this shot won!
  • + 1
 I know this picture worthy choice
  • + 2
 Congrats Sterl!
  • + 1
 Thanks Chris!
  • + 1
 Congratulations! Well done, well executed photo.
  • + 1
 yes ! well deserved
  • - 1
 any prizes for the voters????
or maybe, hey mr. sterl, i vote your photo..do you have something for me??

hahaha
  • + 1
 the helmet is cool
  • + 1
 $10000
  • + 1
 Berms… beware.
  • + 1
 yeah!!!! fair!!!
  • + 1
 Muy buena camara haha
  • + 1
 good,Is my favorite
  • + 1
 Nice dude!
  • + 1
 Mwh.
  • + 0
 Love that photo great shot
  • + 1
 nice shot!
  • + 1
 That's good roost!
  • + 1
 Congrats man =)
  • + 1
 It's a kickass shot .
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