By Nicholas Nanpei
For seasoned photographer and cyclist Daniel Sharp the Nobeyama Cyclocross race at Lake Biwa in Japan was not only his first time back in action since breaking his fibula the previous summer, but it was also his first foray into video.
Competing in the difficult, sandy course was a small personal victory for him and when he was done he turned the camera on to travel partner, famed Portland cyclist Molly Cameron.
A sponsor of the trip had requested a video and Daniel, a professional photographer, jumped at the chance to get his feet wet in the world of video. Video presented unique challenges for the photographer. He found it more multidimensional and a lot more demanding trying to shoot everything and keep the story together. At the root, he says, “photo and video are the same concept: capturing great moments in beautiful places.”
Daniel says the international ‘cross scene is a small but close community and very similar around the world. “All the things we love about it here in Portland are present in Japan: competition, great courses, camaraderie, cowbells, fries, beer.” Although there were many cultural differences among the participants, spectators and locals at Lake Biwa, cycling gave them an instant connection.
Cycling combines the art of motion, style and expression of skateboarding with the teamwork, practice and competition of soccer – both activities which Daniel enjoyed growing up. Daniel sees cycling as a great method of transportation, a way to appreciate different sensations and as both a social activity and a way to get away by yourself. “I think bikes are really important in this point in our culture, to get out of our own get out of our own personal bubbles (cars), to get out and transport ourselves with our own power, to see each other as fellow humans, to appreciate our surroundings, to feel the weather.”
Kansai CX Lake Biwa 2011 is screening in the “Blood, Sweat, and Gears: Celebrating Cyclocross” program on Tuesday, April 17 at 7pm and 9pm.