Through the Lens - John Reynolds

Aug 5, 2010
by Tim Lake  
John Reynolds is the videographer behind all of the popular Yeti Cycles' Podcasts. He spends most of his time with the Yeti Team out at all of the World Cups and he's managed to spare a little time to answer a few questions for you guys on Pinkbike.

Lots of Videos and Pics insideFirst up, what's your name and where are you currently living?
John Reynolds and I live in Denver, CO.

How did you originally get into riding and filming mountain bikes?
I started riding in New Jersey when I was about 10 years old and quickly started racing XC which led to racing downhill. At about 17 I took a video production class in high school, from there I got a camera and started shooting.

What setup are you currently shooting with?
I currently shoot with a Sony EX1 as my primary camera and recently got a Canon 7D, for the 7D I have a Zacuto Z-finder, Canon 50mm 1.8 and Tokina 11-16mm 2.8 lens. I use a Manfrotto tripod, RODE shotgun mics, and Sennheiser wireless lavalier.

Last year you started producing Yeti's well known Podcasts. How did that come about?
It all started in 2008 when Chris Conroy (Yeti Owner) called me up and asked if I would want to shoot some races that Clay wouldn’t be able to attend. I have been friends with Clay for several years and he recommended me for the job. So I shot 5 Mountain States Cup races. At the end of the year Clay told me he was moving on to the Atherton Project and Chris asked me if I wanted to come on full-time. It was an easy decision and I started in January 2009.

Views: 20,372    Faves: 315    Comments: 43

You filled the role of probably the most well known race videographer, Clay Porter. What was that like?
It was awesome, but definitely a lot of hard work to keep the videos on par with what Clay had been doing for Yeti the past few years. Shooting World Cups is a lot harder than it looks, but like I said Clay and I are good friends so he has always been there to help me out.

What was your most memorable shoot, and why?
My most memorable shoot was earlier this year in California shooting with Aaron Gwin for his recent bio video. It was a two week trip that started in Pine Valley and ended in Santa Cruz. Pine Valley is such a rad place and I don’t think I could ever get tired of shooting there. After that we headed up to Santa Cruz. We knew that we wanted to get some footage of Aaron riding the ASR5, but was having trouble finding the right trail. None of the XC trails that we rode were cutting it so we went back to some of the downhill tracks we had been riding. I am still blown away every time I go back and look at the footage of him cornering on that bike and it made for an awesome intro to his bio.

You spend quite a lot of the year away from home. How are you finding that?
The traveling is a love/hate relationship for sure, I love being at the races and seeing all the new places, but it gets old for sure, especially when you have a girl friend back at home. I was gone for almost half of last year and a lot of that time is spent in Europe. This year has been better, but I’m still not completely use to it, if only they had burritos here than it would probably be easier.

Views: 5,263    Faves: 91    Comments: 18

If you could film anyone, anywhere, who and where would it be, and why?
That’s an easy one, Aaron Gwin’s Dream Track in Sol Vista, CO. It’s an idea that I had last year where Aaron collaborates with the Sol Vista trail crew to design a track and then shoot it from top to bottom. Sol Vista isn’t the biggest mountain, but Matt Thompson and his crew are some of the best diggers in the World who know how to build a good track with big jumps. Aaron is one of the new breed of riders really pushing the sport and if he had the opportunity to design and ride a track I think it would make for an incredible video part.

Have you ever made any big mistakes whilst on a shoot?
I don’t think there has been a shoot where I haven’t made any mistakes. I am still learning a lot and have yet to put out a video where I haven’t said I should have done this or should have shot that. One of the funnier mistakes that comes to mind was when we were shooting for Aaron’s bio video in March. I rented a jib for the first few days of the shoot and had all of the gear loaded into our rental car, I opened the back hatch to get something out and one of the 25 pound weights used to counter balance the jib slid out and onto my foot. I never went to the doctor, but I’m sure that my big toe was broken and I was limping around for the next few days of shooting.

Views: 32,913    Faves: 858    Comments: 109

Are you working on any big projects at the moment?
Not right now, my main focus for the rest of the summer is finishing up the World Cup series and a few other events, but there are a lot of ideas floating around Yeti right now so we’ll see.

You get to travel to the world's best riding locations, do you ever wish that you were on the other side of the lens riding?
Not anymore, when I first started shooting I did for sure, but now I just want to film and get the best shots. We do ride to some of the locations though, but I usually have a 40 pound pack on.

What's been the most memorable place you've been to so far?
It was our trip to South Africa at the start of the 2009 season, I had never been outside of North America before and it was an amazing experience, I got to eat crocodile, watch Minnar win in his home town, and spend a few days on safari checking out the country side.

When Jared won the World Champs in his Home country last year, there must have been a lot of emotion running around the team. How did you go about showing that in the videos?
That was for sure an emotional time for everyone on the team. It was an amazing race that I feel lucky to have been apart of. I got to know Jared really well last year and I know how hard he works and how much he wanted to win. Looking back on the video there are probably some things I would change, but overall I’m happy with it. You get a good overall experience of the weekend and the joy Jared went through after winning. My favorite shot from that race is actually in Jared’s bio video that Clay gave me of his brother watching him come across the line in the finals. If you haven’t seen it, I recommend checking it out.

Views: 11,410    Faves: 160    Comments: 17

Do you think we will ever see 3D mountain biking movies?
I don’t think were going to see them any time soon, but who knows what will happen in the future.

Finally, any shout outs or thank-you's you want to give?
I definitely want to thank my parents and the rest of my family for all their support over the years, my girl friend Julianne, everyone at Yeti, Clay Porter, Aaron Gwin, Jared Graves, Joey Schusler, Nate Espinosa, Shawn Spomer, Matt Thompson, and all of my friends who have helped out along the way.

Thanks for taking the time to answer those questions for us John. For all the Yeti videos, visit Yeti's Pinkbike Profile, Here.

-Tim Lake

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  • 2 1
 @ downhill dom.... thats a joke! I wont even start as to why it wouldnt work as shown in that photo... but they are not making a 3d film any time soon.

but it could be done, just take a lot of time, effort and money.
  • 1 0
 Yeah anyone who thinks/believes that is an idiot!
  • 3 0
 hahaha what, the sorta way you beleived it ? haha
  • 1 0
 HE IS THE BEST, its the only one that answer my in facebook!! Reynlods is the best video editors for my
  • 1 0
 Nice one tim....good layout and questions!
  • 1 0
 TGR made a 3D ski movie that will be out this year
  • 1 0
 I think that the snowboard movie "they came from" was in 3D.....i think,
  • 1 0
 What program use for the edit of the videos????
  • 1 0
 looks like final cut pro
  • 3 6
 The Parkins bros are making a 3D MTB movie.
  • 6 0
 Nah they aren't.
  • 1 5
flag captyvatemedia (Aug 5, 2010 at 2:15) (Below Threshold)
 I saw a caption underneath a pic from Fort Bill, they were standing side by side and it said "Parkins brothers with the first 3d MTB film" or something like that.
  • 1 0
 Yeah it was a joke.
  • 1 0
There is much more to 3D then just two dudes standing together. Here is a shot that "vaguely" shows the mechanics behind it.
  • 1 0
 Yeah, I'm aware of that.

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