Picture day: Trials of a skateboarding photographer

Judy Chamberlain Judy Chamberlain Judy Chamberlain Judy Chamberlain Judy Chamberlain

Tour de France photographers get to ride on the backs of motorcycles to make photos. I’ve never had that luxury, but one year I covered the White Rock Marathon while riding a bike. Yeah, it’s harder than you might think.

So when this year’s Oak Cliff Dash for Beads 5k kicked off I figured I’d hop on my mountain bike and give it go. Trouble was, the tires were flat and I was without a pump or time to spare.

So I grabbed the next best thing: an old, warped skateboard. What could possibly go wrong skateboarding alongside runners with a camera held to my face?

During the one-mile walk and the 5k run I experimented with longish shutter speeds and a degree of surrender to the forces at play: gloomy weather, an unsteady hand and the possibility of sudden, violent death.

(Disclaimer: I have a couple decades of black-and-blue skateboarding experience.)

All in all, aside from a near brush with disaster when a pack of runners bottle necked down a hill, the experiment concluded without incident, save being terribly sore for a couple days.


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