Athlete in Action: Garry James

Athlete in Action: Garry James

Athlete backgrounds are as diverse as there are sports which makes it so interesting for me as meeting new people and hearing their stories gives me a chance to live a day in their lives and capture a small part of this in camera.  Most people have heard the saying “the camera doesn’t lie” but I believe that not to be true at all as my next athlete in action will admit himself that he feels he was a “bit wooden” at times during the shoot.  But ask anyone who knows Garry well and its evident that this is not true and as in the pictures below I feel show someone who is easy to approach and full of passion for his sport enjoying every moment it offers.

“6AM Garry top of Mt Stromlo.”  I blurted over the phone.  “No worries see you there” was the response which couldn’t have been easy for a personal trainer who is use to doing all his training during the middle of the day.   6am came about and there we were standing on top of Mt Stromlo only to find the boom gate still hanging in the down position, locked and blocking our path to the first shot location.  This was a problem as the skies had completely clouded over during the night all except a little gap on the horizon.  From experience I knew that this meant a very small window of opportunity of fantastic morning light could pass by with us still standing at the boom gate.  Then the gate made some whirring noises and to our delight raised allowing us to pass, we didn’t waste anytime and rushed out to the trails.

Just as our shoot on top of Stromlo almost didn’t eventuate so did Garry’s start into mtb racing as the 2006 Mont 24Hr almost proved very difficult with endless crashes, Garry vowing never again.  But push on as people do who are determined and focused we achieved some great images one the day much like Garry has on the bike .  Being named the Masters Cyclist of the Year at the Cycling Australia awards last year is an accumulative result of over twenty wins from the last three years both here in Australia and overseas, a well deserved award indeed.  Garry will be focused on one of if not the biggest multi-day event this year, the Absa Cape Epic, in South Africa with confidence of doing well.

To mix it up and again shoot something different but use our time as most efficiently as well we utilized the old burnt out observatory at Stromlo for the portrait shots.  This isolated Garry in the photos by not using the regular dust and bush seen in so many race photos he already has but still gives insight into who and what he does.

As always these shoots open new ideas for me to try with future athletes and the next few I have in the plans will not have a wheel in sight.  Thanks again Garry for your time and all the best for 2015.

Gil.