I’ve no idea when it started but photography for me was always a hobby and very little else, away from my family or work, took my interest, well, apart from football I guess. I would always be on the look out for opportunities to be out shooting and it would bug me if that opportunity didn’t arise.
Four years or so ago I ventured into the possibilities of turning my photography hobby into something more serious and slowly but surely my business in photography started to get somewhere, but as it grew I failed to notice the decline in the hobby, to the point these days where I don’t have a hobby in photography. Pretty much everything I do with my cameras is attached to work.
That, by the way, isn’t a sob story because I get the same enjoyment out of my cameras when working on weddings or shooting portraiture, knowing the images I take will remain as part of those families memories for a lifetime and very possibly a lot longer, but after a long days shoot or editing session I don’t get the urge to go off and take photos for myself anymore.
I now have a new hobby to add some get away moments back into my life, as well as it giving the added benefit of slowly turning me from a 16 stone lump into a slightly more toned 14 and a half stone version of myself. I’m now a mountain biker once more, though Surrey is somewhat devoid of mountains but does have its fair share of hills and country parks.
I say once more because in my younger days I did enjoy bike riding, but learning to drive and finding a social life ended that as a mode of transport and at the age of 24 becoming self employed as a chauffeur ended all sporting activities that could harm my ability to work should I become injured. Of course the absence exercise wasn’t great for my health and fitness, but hey that’s life. Trouble is after 15 years of the lazy lifestyle I put on a bit of weight. I’d always been around 12/13 stone and so being 16 stone I felt it was time to do something about it.
The options where joining a gym, which I had done 3 or so years ago and got bored of after a few months, or getting a bike. The choice was easy, and quite surprisingly it was nearly quite as easy to convince the wife that the financial spend would be worthwhile, thankfully, and that is something photography and cycling have very much in common, the amount you can end up spending!
There are mountain bikes that can be had for £150 and then there are those that are at £4000 and above, and its the same with cameras, and just like when anyone gets started in photography there is little point in buying the very best possible if you have no idea how to use it or if you have no idea how involved your even going to get with it. So I bought a budget bike with the outlook of upgrading a few bits as I went along.
This bike purchase was back on Feb the 1st, 2015, and I have to say that going out riding is a bug that’s bitten me hard, I love it. Yeah early on some of the longer rides would be a bit of a killer and the hills were hard work, and even now the steeper ones really do give the legs a bit of a burning, but as of today (15th May 2015) according to Strava I’ve already clocked up 590 km’s (approx 367 miles) and there is no sign of that number stopping there as I’ll be out again in a few days adding another 30 or so km’s for sure.
One other added bonus to these rides, now I have some decent fitness I’m venturing further and riding in places that I wouldn’t attempted due to the kind of effort it would take to ride, like along the ups and downs of the North Downs, but as a result of this I’m now starting to find some awesome scenery and it’s effectively right on my doorstep, and whats more I’m finding the need to photograph some of it as I go along, so it seems the hobby side of photography isn’t dead to me after all!
What I need to sort out is a decent but small camera as the one I use is just my phone, and yes I know the best camera you have us the one you have to hand, but I can’t stand the fact that on bright days you can hardly see the screen to see what your taking a photo of.
So, where once I thought photography was lost to me as a hobby it has returned with the addition of getting fit, making new friends on group rides, and having a blast on the fast, twisty, adrenaline pumping downhill stretches of these rides I get to go on, and with that in mind I’m off to plan my next ride.
Thanks for dropping by.
(Oh and excuse the wonkiness of the images, they are all from my phone and unaided by editing or a spirit level lol)