MotoUSA Photo of the Week – June 10, 2011

June 10, 2011
Justin Dawes
Justin Dawes
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Raised on two wheels in the deserts of Nevada, the newest addition to the MotoUSA crew has been part of the industry for well over 15 years.Equal parts writer, photographer, and rider, "JDawg" is a jack of all trades and even a master of some.

Crocrocs on-board photo captures the joy of ripping down a deserted two-lane road without a car in sight.
An empty road two-lane road and a view from the behind the handlebars make Crocroc’s photo a winner this week.

This Friday’s MotoUSA Photo of Week comes to us from Natchez Trace Parkway of Mississippi and forums user, Crocroc. “The Trace” is a 444-mile strip of pavement running north to south through Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee. Crocroc’s onboard shot perfectly captures the feeling of tearing down a two-lane road without a car in sight. He hung the camera from his neck and then tethered the bottom to his jacket zipper. For his ingenuity and unique perspective he takes the honors for this week. He’s now in the pool for the EVS Photo of the Year and $500 of protective gear.

My moto-photo tip for this week is a simple concept but can be tough to master. Some of the most striking photos I’ve shot this year are high contrast. There are two types of contrast: tonal and color contrast. Tonal contrast is the relationship between the black, white and grey elements of your photograph. A scene with a big difference between the whites and blacks with little in between would be a high tonal contrast photo. In color contrast it is the juxtaposition of colors on the opposite side of a color wheel with very few other colors in the composition that create the high contrast situation. A red Ducati in front of a green field would be a perfect example. Tonal contrast is much easier to achieve than color, but if you really look for it every time you shoot the ways to achieve this effect will begin to jump out at you. Putting this into your playbook will help you create action and stills that really pop off the screen or page.

high contrast examplecolor wheel
This shot of Waheed flogging the Ducati 1198 is a perfect example of high tonal and color contrast with the bright red bike in front of a dark green background. You can use the wheel above to see what color combinations are high contrast.

So that’s it for this week. Get out there and put these tips to use! I also wanted to let you know that it is possible to be chosen for the POTW more than once, so keep submitting you work in the Photo of the Week Thread on the Motorcycle USA Forums. Until next week – happy riding and shooting!

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