Matthias Wjst - Transcontinental
#CAPTURETHERIDE - IS A PHOTOGRAPHIC SERIES SHOWCASING THE LOVE AFFAIR BETWEEN CYCLISTS AND PHOTOGRAPHY. FEATURING PHOTOGRAPHERS WHO USE THEIR SKILL SET TO CAPTURE THE RIDE IN A SERIES OF PHOTOS.
Website - www.wjst.de/images
Where do you call home?
I have been born in Karlsruhe in South Germany close to the French border at the river Rhine. Moving then around between different universities to study medicine and theology, my headquarter is now in Gröbenzell near Munich. I have been traveling a lot as a physican-scientist as well as a photographer but seeing the Olympic tower or Munich Frauenkirche (from the air) or the town sign of Gröbenzell (from the road) is where I feel at home.
Tell us a bit about these selection of shots.
This is a bit of a random selection, just what came to my mind or what was marked recently in my picture database. While I was much more interested in camera gear in the past, I am now more interested in stories. Antoine Euxpery’s little prince once said: “On ne voit bien qu’avec le coeur. L’essentiel est invisible pour les yeux” — „Only the heart can see well, the essence is hidden from the eyes.“ I don’t like to talk about „shots“, for me it is more about framing and selecting the best view by taking a picture.
How did your love of photography and cycling come together?
Never thought about that question before, maybe some early priming?
I went to Drais primary school in Karlsruhe - you certainly know Karl Freiherr von Drais, the inventor of the running machine, the draisine, that I could see every morning at our school house. And his gravestone is only some 30 feet away from our family grave. I learned already at 10, how much pleasure and fun it is to ride a bicycle every morning to school.
I became addicted to photography by my first job in a big photo lab where I have seen thousands of pictures every day - back in 1973 where you couldn’t just go to Flickr or Instagram. As an employee I got cameras, film, chemicals and paper at a large discount, so it’s hardly surprising that I wanted to master that technology.
It took me, however, a rather long time, to bring cycling and photography together.
I didn’t want to be another Tour de France photographer as there are so many small and even more funny bicycle races that deserve also some attention. And there are many more aspects of cycling; stories of distance travelling; about politics how we organize our life in big cities; it’s about bicycle technology and manufacturing; and even about bike fashion.
What’s the lowdown on your kit - bike and camera?
Which of my many bikes do you mean? And which camera?
How do you carry your camera while riding?
I strap it around the neck with a mountain rope and dump it into a reporter vest. Looks a bit strange but form follows function. Unfortunately this is not waterproof, so occasionally I need also a lightweight Ortlieb bag.
Coffee or beer after your ride?
16 sharp is the turning point.
Waxing or shaving?
Garmin or no Garmin? Do you use apps to record your ride?
A love / hate affair. A simple Android phone with Osmand+ is all I need. Never recorded anything as I am not a competitive rider.
Which adventure have you set your sights on next?
There are so many opportunities for cycling photos. My next major event is Bayern-Rundfahrt. Would like to continue with cycle messenger events, this year in Milano. World Klapp, Cobble Hoppel, Turmbergrennen As I couldn’t make it to Burning Man, I will hopefully be at Nowhere. Would like to do more on para-cycling. And will again be part of the Transcontinental team.