Mead Norton is the Wildcard Photographer for Crankworx Rotorua's Deep Summer Contest

Feb 27, 2019
by Pinkbike Staff  
Dan Griffiths is one of the confirmed photographers.

Update: Mead Norton is the Wildcard Photographer for Crankworx Rotorua's Deep Summer Contest. Thank you for voting and congratulations Mead!

Canon Deep Summer Photo Challenge presented by Regent of Rotorua

Four photographers, one wildcard, three days to shoot their team of up to four people as they showcase the amazing trail networks in Rotorua. The photographers will rally their teams to embark on three days of intense shooting & editing from Sunday, March 17th through to Tuesday the 19th. Finalised slideshows will be handed in first thing on Wednesday the 20th in time for judging.

Best photographic slideshow takes home $3000, with $400 going each top ‘location’ shot.

Matt Staggs (left) and Ben Karalus (right) are heading to Rotorua to take part in the Deep Summer Contest.

Confirmed Photographers:

Ben Karalus
Matt Staggs
Dan Griffiths

Take a look at the below photos and then cast your vote in the poll to determine whether the fourth photographer to join them will be Henry Jaine, Mead Norton, or Thomas Falconer.

Henry Jaine

Mead Norton

Thomas Falconer

Check out last year’s winning slideshow from Laurence Crossman – Emms:

On Saturday the 23rd at 8pm – head on down to Eat St, grab a beer and enjoy the slideshows that have been created!

MENTIONS: @officialcrankworx


  • 18 9
 Based on technical photography merits alone, and not the rider's skills, I had to go with Mead Norton. All are great shots, but it appears Mead took a lot more control of his lighting and took more time to setup than either of the others. Looks like he used flash or other off-camera lighting to illuminate the rider as he went through a dark area. It really makes the rider pop out of the background. And the angle of the shot looks more well thought out and results in a better photograph. It seems to me the other 2 are naturally lit and not as much effort to get the shot. The first one is a good shot, but it's completely centered in the frame, and completely straight on. It could be done better in my opinion. The 3rd just isn't a compelling photograph to me. Depth of field seems more of a gimmick here than a value add to the photograph. It's a good shot of a rider mid-trick, but the background and composition seems incredibly sterile to me. That's just my 2 pennies. I'm an amateur photographer and not a professional by any stretch, I just like Mead's the best.
  • 4 2
 I don't know the first thing about photography but also voted for Mead Norton just cos, style off a kicker in dark woods.
  • 20 2
 I would agree although the flash is a little strong for my taste but that may well have been the intention. Can't say I'm blown away by any of these.
  • 4 1
 @jcoakes: I agree it's a little harsh, but to me it's the best of the 3. It also appears to have taken the most effort to setup/get the shot. It's technically sound, sharp, and the composition is compelling. Skin tone is good even with the flash and the bright jersey colors. Flash could definitely be dialed down some (if it were me), but I think I get what they were going for. It draws your eyes right to the rider's face, and the rider almost seems to be popping out of the background. Must have been some bright bulbs! Always fun talking photography, especially mountain bike photography. 2 of my favorite hobbies!
  • 3 2
 Good comment, my exact thoughts.
  • 6 0
 Henry’s Instagram is all about mountain biking. He’s got my vote.
  • 2 0
 after thinking about it for a few days and remembering that the goal to deep summer challenge isn't just to capture sick shots of riding bikes with epic landscapes but mainly to tell a story and depict a journey through the eyes of both the photographer and the rider with still images. after checking out these portfolios with a fresh perspective, im sayin falconer has the potential to deliver something rad.
  • 5 1
 if you click on each photographers link, you get a better sense of their style
  • 1 0
 Thomas get my vote, well thought out composition and framing. First photo is basically a biker in beautiful environment that could be taken by any average shooter with decent gear. Second photo is nice and flash illuminated riders sure looks good, but not super hard to do if you have the gear and time to experiment. I would also use a slower shutter to further isolate the rider from the background. I'm not saying any of the photos are bad. I would be super happy taking any of them. Good work all three!
  • 2 0
 See I think the rider is way too small and there's way too much negative space. It distracts from the subject, and there's really nothing that interesting in the background to warrant including so much of it. Just further proof that photography is subjective. There's no right or wrong.
  • 3 0
 I agree on the subjective part Smile It's also interesting checking each photographers insta feed. It confirms the style of the images on this page. First shooter loves riding and takes very nice action photos of riders. Second shooter is a bit more of a gear head. Likes to experiment with different equipment in all sorts of environments. And third shooter has a very nice artistic style.

Me myself are closer to the gear head but I wish I hade the artistic eye. I love photography and wish I took more time to practice it.
  • 2 0
 @JanB: Yeah, I'm surprised by the submissions. I visited their feeds after voting and I think they all have some great shots that are better than the ones submitted.
  • 2 2
 Nice simplified background on the 3rd photo, but I'm a sucker for pop flash in the second photo (underexpose the background 1-2 stops and let the the ttl meter the flash for the subject.) Nice contrast to the green background.
  • 4 0
 Composition gets my vote for Thomas's shot.
  • 2 1
 Cheers dude! By the time Connor ( rider) nailed the landing on this shot, the blood has left my butt cheeks from sitting on the concrete for so dang long haha.

I personally will use natural light 99/100 times. Born, Raised and still living in Rotorua. I know the forest insanely well and I have some serious tricks up my sleeve. Super keen to lay it all out on the line. #backtomyroots
  • 1 2
 No women? I mean maybe none applied... but I know there must be some great women photographers in the sport...
  • 3 0
 There is no consipracy to keeping women out of Crankworx deep summer, etc. If anything, CWX has been doing some heavy lifting to get more women involved in the sport in all aspects. In case you aren't aware - their marketing person AND media communications people are both SUPER rad women. Last years Deep Summer contest organizer was a woman. CWX 100% Supports getting more women involved.
  • 1 0
 @ClintTrahan: I didn't say there was a conspiracy... nor did I say that there weren't women involved in the process. I just am surprised there aren't any women photographers in the contest!
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