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Rip Curl "Girls go surfing day"

It’s been a while since updates but I have been doing a few random shoots lately so I’m going to post a few today.

Last week I was asked by Rip Curl to shoot their annual “Girls go surfing day” at Manly beach in Sydney. It’s basically a program set up by Rip Curl to get women involved in surfing and the day is subsidised by a bunch of sponsors, which means girls get a couple of hours surf lessons, all the gear and food for something like $40, which is pretty rad!
Junior women’s surfing sensation Tyler Wright was there to help the girls out on the day. For those that don’t know who Tyler is, she’s the 14 year old that beat pro veteran Layne Beachley in her own competition, the Beachley Classic, a few weeks ago. It was quite the upset as this was the contest that Layne announced her retirement from professional surfing at. I’m sure she would have much preferred to have gone out with a win, rather than being flogged by a 14 year old!
More shots after the cut.





Danhimbrechts.com is back!

Well it’s been a long couple of months, but the website is finally back live and working!(click here to see) For those that missed the drama that unfolded, here is a play by play of how a simple website which has been working fine for a number of years can all of a sudden turn into a massive nightmare!

The headache began whilst I was on an Australian Snowboarder Magazine editorial trip in a remote valley of New Zealand’s south island. I was there to shoot a story about “Heli Park” an amazing little Heli ski lodge set in one of the most breathtaking valleys I’ve ever seen! Heli park is so remote there is no internet, mobile phone coverage or T.V out there; you’re disconnected from the outside world and it’s a great thing!
While I was enjoying the serenity of spending four days with a couple of good friends in paradise (with a helicopter on standby parked out the front!) I had no idea that my website had been targeted by some nasty web parasites apparently originating from Russia. I was uncontactable, and friends had been trying to let me know something was up. What made this random situation all the more troubling was that I had just been featured on two of the biggest news websites in Australia, the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.com. They ran a gallery of some of my best winter action shots and a little story about dream jobs. I was featured as the snowboard/ski photographer. They linked out to me, which normally would have seen an unprecedented amount of first time visitors to my site, however the Russian hackers had other ideas and their little parasites that trawl web server’s looking for back door vulnerabilities sure found one in my website. This so called “sequel injection” (as I was later to find out) rendered every image on my site non-viewable and users of a Windows machine were greeted with a message that they had just received a Trojan from me! Talk about bad timing, I don’t think it gets much worse.
As soon as I reached civilisation again, I was greeted with this news, and a few 80 dollar phone calls to my web hosts in the US later and things were all sorted out – or so it seemed. The back door was shut and I was assured that nothing could penetrate my site, well it did and it did four more times in the space of a single week!
It was decided best that my site be shut down until the whole thing could be re-coded into something much less vulnerable to random Russians!
So here we are, nearly two months later and it’s finally back up! Everything looks and feels the same although I’ve put up quite a lot of new images as well as some old favourites that I just can’t seem to let go of. I’ll be adding more images over the next couple of days, but am relieved that it’s finally back up and one less thing I need to be working on everyday!

Why film can never die

So it’s been a while between posts here. I’ve been busy trying to get my website back in order and live, it’s been a struggle but the good news is that the content has all been re-uploaded and the website has been re-coded in PHP, and I have a brand new content management system, I even hired a new web desigher from the Huemor web design agency, for which I am very excited about.
Today I was going through some old boxes and found some film from a New York trip that I couldn’t remember ever having scanned, so I dusted off the cobwebs from the film scanner and got a few of them scanned.
One thing that kept going through my mind while I was scanning was just how incredible film looks! Even when it’s scanned (and essentially digitised) it still has that look and feel that I believe cannot yet be replicated by digital cameras. The dynamic range of a well exposed image shot on Kodak Tri-X or the colour and saturation of an image shot on Fuji Provia or Velvia, is just not there with digital. It has been a day where I have promised myself that I must shoot more film in the future, especially black and white.

Boost SnoSho – Perisher NSW

The Boost SnoSho has just wrapped again for another year. I shot the event again this year, as I have for the past 3 (or is it 4?)years now.

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This year saw an incredible field of international riders out to compete for the $15,000 in prize money, some of those who came out were Torstein Horgmo(NOR), Danny Davis(USA), Mikkel Bang(NOR), Chas Guldemond(USA), Marko Grilic(SLV), Chris Sorman(SWE), Luke Mitrani(USA) to name a few.
In true Boost tradition it was perfect weather right p until five minutes before the start of the competition, which always runs under lights on a Saturday night. Get More Information

This presented plenty of problems considering all the flash gear I had out to capture such a competition at night. I had an Elinchrom Ranger with two heads and a number of Metz 45′s and 60′s on different PocketWizard channels so i could switch between different banks of lighting. As it rains every year I was kind of prepared for the rain and had come armed with a bunch of extra large ziplock bags and small garbage bags for the pocketwizards and battery packs.
It seems as though everything survived the drenching, however I think next year I’ll pack a Nikon D3 and shoot it all in available light at ISO 6400!
Photos below the cut.

Style Wars

So I’m back from an amazing trip to New Zealand. the Billabong shoot went incredibly well and all in all I spent three exceptional days in a helicopter.

I think I shot some of my best snowboarding images to date while on the Billabong trip and will post some once the catalogue is back from the printers.
Shooting with guys like Antti Autti, Scotty Lago, Marius Otterstrad, and Australia’s own Robbie J Walker, Clint Allan and Nick Gregory is like a snow photographer’s dream.
It was really cool to be involved in such a productive catalogue shoot with super talented riders.
New Zealand blew my mind, the place is so beautiful, every corner yields another postcard image. It got to the point where I had to hold myself back from stopping to take a photo every time another perfect vista presented itself

I had a few days to relax when I arrived back home in Sydney, took care of some emails and enjoyed some good coffee, then it was straight back in to the car with all the equipment to head down to Falls Creek in Victoria for the Style Wars competition.

Style Wars is a four day snowboarding event which is the brainchild of former Australia & New Zealand Snowboarding magazine editor and Aussie industry heavyweight Richard Hegarty. In it’s fourth year Style Wars is now a 4 star TTR snowboard event which draws big name riders from all over the world to compete in one of the most relaxed rider driven competition environments I’ve ever witnessed. Hegarty has done it again this year, showing that if you create an event which has great features purpose built and you have a cool rider driven atmosphere, where everybody is looked after, fed and accommodated comfortably, the big names will come!

The course this year consists of a step down drop into a 90-ft table and finally an 80-ft channel gap. These are world class features and they are built right here in Falls Creek, proving that world class snowboarding events are possible on home turf, it just requires the resorts to see the marketing value in world wide publicity from these events.
Unfortunately most Aussie resorts only seem interested in publishing higher skiier visit numbers year after year…bring on the bus groups!

A rail jam also takes place tonight on a purpose built 28 stair set rail. the jibbers aren’t left out at Style Wars.

Tomorrow I head back to Perisher in NSW to prepare for the Boost Mobile SnoSho competition which I am the main shooter for. Every year the event has taken place in atrocious weather, so I’m hopeful this year will see better conditions.

New Zealand and my hijacked website!

I am currently in New Zealand for a few shoots, firstly I have just completed an editorial trip for Australian Snowboarder Magazine, which took in Mt Hutt in the Canterbury region of the south island and an amazing heli boarding shoot up at Mt Potts heli park.Then I’m off to do the Billabong 2009 winter catalogue shoot in Wanaka, which will be one of the biggest commercial shoots I have done yet! Click Six Flags promo to get alerts about discounts and more, right in your inbox.
During my time at Mt Potts we were without mobile phone reception, internet or television. We were truly isolated from the outside world. Also during this time I was featured on the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age’s websites with a gallery of my images. What I did not know until this morning when driving back into mobile phone reception was that my website was attacked by a malicious code script which destroyed the functionality of the site and tried to upload a trojan to peoples computer’s. Get the facts – WebDesign499 The timing could not have been worse! This has never happened in all the time I have had a website and I couldn’t believe how unlucky I was to have this happen when I was being linked to on two of the most popular news websites in the country.
Heli Park, however, was absolutely incredible! We had a whole mountain to ourselves with our own helicopter waiting for us at the bottom of the hill waiting to drop us off on the next peak. The snow was pretty amazing and did I mention the helicopter? This was my first time in a chopper, and I loved every minute of it! The scenery around this region of New Zealand is nothing short of breathtaking, it would have been an amazing experience without the untracked powder runs waiting below us, the powder though, was lots and lots of fun!

Here are some photos, more words to come very soon!


Burton Cattlemans Rail Jam

So I was the exclusive shooter for the 3rd annual Burton cattlemans rail Jam at Mt Buller in Victoria this past weekend.
I’ve shot the event before and was looking to do something a little different this year. My idea was to introduce a second camera and have this camera fired remotely by my main camera, allowing me to document two unique angles of the same moment in time. My good friend rick baker at Pop magazine warned me I may be complicating things for myself, however that was not going to stop me from trying! More after the jump the first hurdle was getting the remote camera rig all set and ready to go. I had this remote brainstorm on Thursday while reading one of my regular photography websites that I check almost religiously, sports shooter, and seeing a little video on one of the guys setting up remote rigs for basketball. I figured that it couldn’t be too hard and it was something I have been wanting to try ever since I got my first set of pocket wizard radio remotes.
So I needed a cable that goes from the pocket wizard radio receiver to the motor drive remote port on the camera body. the pocket wizard company makes these and they sell for an outrageous $190 US dollars! That’s a lot of money for a short piece of cable! I called around to see if anyone I knew About Payday Loan Helpers.
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After doing a bit of research on the internet I decided to make one by cutting into my $160 Nikon shutter release cable and soldering a 65 cent mini jack from jaycar onto the end. It took a bit to work out which wire to solder, but in the end the setup was working fine. I was able to fire a bank of flashes and the remote camera all from my main camera. Awesome!

I get down to Mt Buller and the weather is very typical of that area – foggy, windy and icy. I knew the weather would probably be crap and I had prepared for that. What i hadn’t prepared for was spending over an hour to set up all the flashes (5 in total) and the remote rig mounted on a manfrotto magic arm hanging out over the contest rail, and it not working!!
It worked under controlled conditions of Hopkins and Porter, but out in the elements of my house, it just didn’t work. The problem was is that the camera firing the the remote and the flashes was out of sync with the flashes.

The remote and the flashes were all in sync but it still left me without one of the two shots I needed to make a great feature. So you can complete the entire process of payday loan in 15 minutes direct lenders. To get funded today apply now.

The contest had started and I couldn’t waste any more time trouble shooting so i had to revert back to basics and just use the one camera body, unfortunately!

Post event I worked out that the sync from the main camera is a little quicker than the remotes and I would need the Pocket Wizard MultiMax to be able to sync all of them up correctly…To bad I didn’t read that in PocketWizard’s data sheets before cutting the $160 cable and spending all that time setting up a rig that didn’t work! Oh well, lesson learnt!

The good news to come from this was that The Age, the respected broadsheet daily paper from Melbourne, picked up a selection of images from our press release and ran them in a gallery on their website.

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This is a pretty big deal for snowboarding in Australia. It’s not often ‘real” snowboarding gets a run in the mainstream press!
here’s the link

Here are some of the photos from the event.

Alex Kutaysov (Rus) with a nosepress.

This is an image from the remote camera. Andy Lloyd.

Erin Tanner, the only female competitor in the competition after Courtney Phillipson exited injured

Tom Pelley, first rider in the three year history of the event to slide the top rail.

Contest overview

Another cover!


I just found out yesterday via a press release from Billabong that I got the cover shot on the third issue of Australian Snowboarder magazine! I’m super stoked as this is my second cover in a row this year! I haven’t had a cover for a few years and my last cover was for a French snowboarding magazine called “SnowSurf”
The rider in this shot is Clint Allan, the photo was shot in late January this year in Mammoth California. We accessed this terrain with snowmobiles. The full story “Sledding in the Sierras” is in this issue. I also wrote the story.

Camera information is Nikon D200, 80-200mm f2.8 AF-D Nikkor lens @ 80mm, 1/800th sec f4.0 @ ISO 640

Footy Fever!


For anyone that is confused as to why there are shots of basketball, Wrestlers and now rugby league on here, it is because I’m in the process of building a more well rounded portfolio, which encompasses some more traditional sports. More shots and words after the jump. I went out to Leichardt Oval yesterday and shot a game of rugby league. It was a state cup match between Balmain and North Sydney (basically there’s the NRL, then Toyota cup then these guys). I’ve never shot footy before, but i had a good idea where and how i had to shoot it. I always look to see where the photographers are positioned during televised sport, no matter what the sport or my interest (or lack of!) I still take note of where the photographer’s position themselves to get the shots. The thing about football is that it is super fast from one end to the other, to stay in good position to shoot the attacking team you need to constantly run up and down the sideline. Given that i am probably a little unfit at the moment( a lot unfit) I am hurting today! Anyway here’s a few shots. All shot on Nikon D200 with a 300mm f2.8 AFS Nikkor lens.







WWE Presscall

OK, so back from the presscall today, Got some decent shots, not sure where to send them but all in all it was a good chance to get to a press conference and go shoulder to shoulder with the other photogs (most of whom seemed so unhappy to be there!)

One thing that i couldn’t get past was the sheer size of wrestler “The Great Khali”, the man is a beast! Check the photos, and remember the dudes he is standing next to are big guys!

Absolutely massive!
Check the bling..Michelle McCool and Batista
Edge
The Great Khali
I’m pretty sure that’s Khamal on the left!