Taking a Picture From a Bicycle in Motion
For an interesting picture, bicycle mounted cameras can provide a unique viewpoint. This is great when photographing racers or a scenic drive. Photographers can also be creative by including the front wheel or the biker as part of the image. There are several challenges with mounting a camera on a bicycle. The following are a few suggestions to create a great image captured from a bicycle.
Step 1: Understand Challenges with Photographing from a Bicycle
Over the years, video and digital cameras have been mounted on vehicles such as bicycles, cars, skateboards and other modes of transportation with wheels to simulate a dolly effect. However, mounting the device on a bicycle poses its own problems. There is less suspension on a bicycle as compared to a car, making the camera more vulnerable to shocks and vibrations. Although a supporting structure is easier and simpler to construct on a bicycle than a car, it has to be durable and rigid enough so that the camera does not fall off during the ride.
Step 2: Find Available Bicycle Mounts for the Camera
There are mounts that have been devised to attach cameras and video cameras on bicycles. The range of prices indicates the variety of types of camera mounts, from the professional type to the more affordable do-it-yourself alternatives. Professional mounts have been devised to function similar to a SteadiCam. The extended arms allow the photographer to place the mount and the camera on different parts of the bicycle’s frame. These arms have numerous joints which allow the direction and angle of the camera to be adjusted.
Depending on the brand and model, the mounts can be attached to the bicycle by means of screws, clamps or by use of powerful suction cups. There are also numerous guides available on the Internet which can help photographers mount their cameras on the bicycle using household items. Whatever type of mount selected, make sure that the camera is mounted securely and tightly enough, but with some space from the frame to protect it from vibrations and shocks.
Step 3: Take Caution
Regardless of how straight and smooth the road is (and the level of expertise of the biker), never try to photograph while driving the bicycle. It is not safe to do both at the same time, especially with riding through rougher terrain. A remote trigger can be used, but only if it does not distract the biker from seeing the road. Some professional photographers utilize a team to use the rig effectively; one drives the bicycle which has the camera and another vehicle follows closely behind with the driver and photographer inside. The photographer uses a remote trigger to take the shots.
This setup requires at least three people to work, but is safer as each is designated a specific function. Both the biker and the car driver can concentrate on the road while the photographer can determine when to take the shot. Some experts advise using a cheaper camera, especially when testing the rig out for the first time. This allows the photographer to play with the angles and settings without the risk of damaging an expensive camera.