2012, Photography

Cycling is more than the Tour de France, doping, and being the fastest. Cycling is passion, cycling is life. The racing scene is like life under a microscope. Success, friendship, betrayal, and heroism. Despite the doping the riders still have to suffer the pain and exhaustion.
images, photographs, image, photograph, photography, wouter, brandsma, wouter brandsma, cycling, biking, riding, ride, tour, black and white, cyclista, passion, pain, exhaustion, rain, ricoh, ricoh grd, ricoh gr digital, ricoh grd3, ricoh gr digital 3, bicycle, netherlands, europe
As an amateur rider it gives me the sense of speed and dedication. You always set goals to climb higher, ride faster, and further. The joy and thrill of chasing a group of cyclist on a long winding dike road and catching them is enlightening. And I remember many of the rides I made, like some of the finest moments I captured while photographing.

All photographs by Wouter Brandsma

87 thoughts on “Cyclista

  1. As an ex-cyclist myself, I can totally relate. The thrill of the peloton like you said is awesome. Climbing to the front of the group and having your time at the top and then falling off to the back to recover is certainly a ride. These is a wonderful set and even though I was never a Miguel Indurain I always tried to be best as I can be until I had a fall which kind of traumatized me. I never road again but I still remember all the great feelings it generated. Even being a part of the Banesto team and or climbing the Giro, dreams are dreams, but they are fun. Again wonderful essay here.

    1. Back in the days (I mean before Indurain, because I was more a fan of Delgado anyway) we climbed the small hills in my neighborhood dreaming that we were Bernard Hinault and Luis “Lucho” Herrera. The wonderful thing is that we can witness the dream. We likely don’t ride as hard as the pros, yet we still climb, ride over cobble stones, and decent at 80+ km/h! That is the passion.

  2. Hi, Wouter.
    You pictures and words reminded me that I must stop being lazy and resume riding again. A hard fall and a lower back pain had put me off from quite some time. It will not be aggressive riding with friends anymore though, but a more laidback cycling with family.
    P.S: My laziness kind of envy your leveled plain roads… It’s all ups and downs where I live.
    Good ridings and pictures!

    1. Riding is mostly good to ensure that the pain doesn’t increase. I am gradually picking up the pace of three years ago. We unfortunately lack the long climbs, but still have short and quite aggressive climbs.

    1. I am not on Pinterest, but feel free to share it. There is even a Pinterest share button beneath the blog post. And thank you for your comment Courtney.

  3. Congrats on being FP!
    You have a great eye and an interesting perspective. I loved your pics. One of my favorites was the heading on your WP blog. I am intrigued. If I may ask, what’s the story behind the ‘shoe shot’ of the man and woman?
    I really enjoy your use of black and white -it brings such great character to the composition of each shot. Anyway, thanks for posting your beautiful shots. I hope to someday take interesting photos. For now, I shoot with an iPhone. Take care.

    1. The featured photograph, the “shoe shot”, was taken last year at the local WWII Market Garden commemoration in the Netherlands. The woman was dressed up nice in ’40’s cloths acting like she felt in love with a young British soldier. A sort of reenactment of the 1944/1945 era during World War II (see more photographs here

      Take care too and thank you for visiting my blog.

  4. Had a “bikeE” once, but settled on an old Nishiki cromoly frame upgraded with some 700c rims from a Specialized. I also put a bent seat post on from a BMX shop and a riser “gooseneck” from a mountain bike — a tribute to my youth when we used to mash bikes together from whatever parts we had, sometimes with different sized wheels and such. Don’t ride much, but it works well to train the dog.

    1. Thank you and I shoot digital, but didn’t use VSCO film presets. Just a little processing technique that can be done in many applications where you can change the contrast curve.

  5. I’ve been meaning to get into long-distance cycling. I think this post was just the ticket for much-needed inspiration. Many thanks!

  6. Great post!
    Yeah, I love Cycling too, and I agree with you “Cycling is passion, cycling is life.”
    Thanks for sharing.

  7. Hi Wouter,
    I really love this set of amazing images. I think what makes them so captivating is your intimate personal involvement. There’s no distance between the photographer and the subject as is often the case. Nicely done!

  8. It’s fabulous to see the bicycle and cycling revered in your photos, words and all of the comments! As a former racing cyclist and now a fat tire enthusiast I your work reminds me that the will be no excuse for not going for a ride tomorrow rain or shine! Thanks

  9. I’m just a commuter cyclist so I have enjoying the photography more than the story itself but as commuter sometimes while watching Tour of France, since a live in Europe, you imagine yourself in one of these races climbing the Tourmalet.

    But commuter just climb over cars in city…while breathing pollution.

  10. Great shots. I’m into motorcycles, but it all started with bicycles, which I still ride. But mostly, very nice shots, very nice showing of action, composition.

  11. Amazing photos, Wouter! I’m an amateur cyclist – used to Race in the USCF – CAT 3. Now I just ride for fun, Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed and thank you for the beautiful photos!


  12. Wonderful photos! I always wanted to ride a bike but nobody taught me how to use it when I was younger, It sort of awkward to be learning how to pedal at my age now. Cheers to you for making this post to freshly pressed by the way. 🙂

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  13. You should submit these with some little captions to Bicycle Times magazine. They are always looking for awesome photography. Go through your files and send them a photo story. I know they will print it, and you will get a bit of cash too.

  14. I think people who cycle are extremely cool, wish I had the stamina. We got my son a bike for his birthday, cant wait for him to enjoy the summer riding it. I love your black and white pix. I had a cam when I was younger and took some really cool pix with it.

  15. Witnessing the dreams, following the roads, living a rambling life. The essence of cycling in words & photographs, my friend! Chapeau!

    All the best & safe travels, Fritsch.

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