Parkour in the forest

Our most recent guest was a friend of my boyfriend’s that happens to be a professional gymnast who also does parkour. When I took him on a walk in the lovely forests around our house and he sampled the soft texture of the moss under his feet he felt the urge to take a few jumps and asked me to take some photos. The disappointment for the total lack of snow (between Christmas and New Year’s temperatures went anomalously up and all the snow suddenly melted, and with it the hope to see a winter wonderland visiting us at this time of the year) turned into a good opportunity to jump around the forest.

When it comes to sports photography I am no pro – it’s a field I’m really not experienced in, so I took this chance to practise a type of photography that is a little out of my comfort zone. Luckily the light was quite good – overcast days are the best for photos in the woods as there are virtually no shadows and the light is all homogeneously diffused. The biggest challenge was shutter speed, in order to freeze the quick movements I had to keep very fast shooting times, which also required high ISO.swedish forest parkourThere is something surreal about a person caught flying head down in the woods, I guess this is my favourite feature about this photoshoot. This is far, far from the posed portraits I’m used to shooting. It was interesting to have a different type of model doing different types of poses. It was good to be challenged as a photographer.

A big rock proved excellent for some nice jumps so I changed lens and lay down to capture some action from below. The trees were the perfect frame in this wide angle, giving these shots a great sense of perspective.nicholas-5At this point I couldn’t help taking some more posed portraits, so we staged the following with more static poses.nicholas-7nicholas-6These are definitely my favourite shots from today. It was good to accept the challenge of doing a different type of photography than what I usually do, but when I got to play by my rules again I felt more creative. Which is what I like the most about photography.

The last shot I took before we went back home was on a pole. It was originally a dead tree but it has been cut quite high for some reason. My athletic friend jumped up and sat on it.nicholas-8Getting down wasn’t nearly any easy nor glamorous, but I just had to take a candid “behind the scenes” picture.nicholas-9I love it that every time we have a guest they end up becoming my models in the woods, doing what they love. They end up being portrayed performing their daily activities in the backdrop of the Swedish forests. Last September my illustrator friend was here and I photographed her sketching in the same forest (you can read the postΒ here). I guess this is becoming a regular happening.

If you want to see more of the model in this post you can check out the page of the parkour group he belongs to, Urban Twisters.

5 thoughts on “Parkour in the forest

  1. Great photos and well done for capturing the movement so clearly. I really struggle with fast shutter speed, I much prefer a slower one and low ISO if I can get away with it, probably why most of my photography has no people in it!

    1. Thank you. I am not a big fan of high ISO but since I upgraded my gear and got a Canon 6D I feel more confident with it. My older camera was producing crap over ISO 800.

        1. To me editing is about as fun as shooting. Especially considering that digital cameras never really deliver the same colours you see in real life. So the search for the perfect colours is my mission πŸ˜€

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