the dan milner photography blog: tales of an adventuring photo chimp

September 4, 2012

MBUK in Milner cover shocker

Filed under: bike, photography — Tags: , — danmilner @ 4:40 pm

It’s been a while in the making, 19 years in fact. MBUK was the first mountain bike mag I started working with some 19 years ago (with a self-shot riding feature on Mallorca called “Sizzle”), and this month I landed my first front cover on the mag. I’ve had other covers -on Bike, on Singletrack, MBR, Privateer and What Mountain Bike- but MBUK has always eluded me. Until now.

A lot of this has to do with style. As you’ll no doubt know, I’m not one for using flashes unless I have to (odd as I spent all last week at Eurobike burning my flashes into meltdown), preferring to work with natural light, and to cut a long boring story short, for years MBUK’s covers have always been about flash. They’ve also been about bikes, specific bikes and politics and wanting a certain bike, a certain colour clothing on the cover, all to do with relating to inside content (and dare I say it, keeping advertisers happy). But last year they had a redesign one that opened up their cover look to, well more Milner-like flash-free photography.

Shoot covers quicker

This shot of Mark Scott was taken during a very long day shooting a technique feature in the Portes du Soleil area. “Just see if you can get us a cover while you’re shooting the feature,” had said the art director. Hmm, yeah we’ll see about that I thought, knowing full well most covers are shot on dedicated cover shoots. In the end we came across two cover-suitable bits of trail that fitted the “Fast and Loose” brief, one we sessioned for the above shot and just making the last lift to reach the second location before the lifts closed for the day. I’d expected the mag to use the shot below, part of the session at the end of the day, when the light started to ping, but it was the morning shot taken en route to the technique feature that made the cut instead.

Maybe in 19 years time I’ll shoot flashed covers. We’ll see.

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