Top 10: Nathan Beddows 1

I could write an introduction for Nathan Beddows that would praise his work and his career, but he already wrote a pretty damn good intro for himself. Check out his top 10 below.

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Hello my name is Nathan Beddows, 29 years old from Great Yarmouth, England and this is my first time visiting the UK site of Vital BMX. Thanks for having me, it's nice to be here, so yeah…awkward. Anyway, I used to work at Ride UK BMX Magazine as an editor/photographer for several years but last year I went freelance, working for a few other BMX mags, such as Freedom, Ride US, BMX Rider and The Albion. I've been shooting BMX photos as a job for a entire decade now with my first works being printed in issue 84 of Ride UK way back in 2004 (Shout out to Ricky Feather).

Being asked for your "top 10 photos" is a bit daunting, so instead I've just picked 10 random ones off of my Instagram (@nathanbeddows). I've travelled all over the world to document BMX, shot more mag covers than I've had Birthdays and I was picked for that Illume Book this year (Shout out to Red Bull and Vodka). So yeah basically I'm sitting on a mountain of BMX photos. Too many to know what to do with. Way too many to choose my favourite 10 from! Anyway here's 10 random images off of my Instagram that I'm feeling:

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Hanging out with Peter Adam is never a dull moment. Here he hops over me for a goofy Selfie. I spend most of my days laying on the floor and this summer's day outside the Manchester Velodrome was no exception. Here's his section from The Emerald Video he made back in '09  http://vimeo.com/9441339

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This is New York as seen from the top of the Empire State Building. I've been lucky enough to have somewhere decent to stay out in New Jersey since the end of August 2013 (Thanks Ralph/Animal Bikes), so I've been going back and forth to the "Big Apple" a lot throughout last year. I'd always dreamed about visiting NYC as a kid so I'm buzzing that being over here in NJ has worked out the way it has. The ESB security don't allow tripods on the top deck and even make you go through metal detectors on the way up. They even took my Manfratto clamp off of me. Goons.

The exposure for this photo was 30 seconds long so for each shot I just secretly rested the camera on a tshirt on the edge of the building, all whilst kissing the girl who had paid for my ticket up. Fuck yeah Americaaaaaaaaa! This link just seems appropriate: http://vimeo.com/2848900

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It's no secret that Greg Illingworth is one of my favourite riders to shoot with. I mean he's just a straight up badman you know what I'm saying? 100mph, no brakes, massive gaps, clicked tricks - badman shit basically. Greg is very photographically minded too, knowing how his own tricks should look their best in photo format, which is actually such a massive help when shooting photos. I remember on this particular photo, shot by the shoreline in Nagoya, Japan, that Greg was grabbing the camera off of me afterwards and examining the trick pixel by pixel to make sure it was perfect. I think he got it about as good as it was gonna go, what do you reckon? Cheers to Adam Dayson/Tom Creasy at Monster Energy for making that trip happen back in November 2011. Here's a link to a related video filmed by Will Evans: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uSuytY4eb9c

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Whilst on the subject of riding street faster than 5 pedals an hour, here's a classic shot of Niki Croft doing a wallride in Nottingham, UK, from back in 2007. I miss hanging out with Niki but nothing really explains his story better than this documentary by Rich Forne: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znXmoMWHAeM


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Going to Texas Toast for the first time this year was an interesting experience to say the least. I flew down from New Jersey in October last year to spend a couple of weeks there in the BMX Mecca of Austin. I ended up shooting the actual event for the Albion website: http://thealbion.cc/texas-toast-noracup-2013 So yeah anyway, just after I watched Hoder try this crazy wallride line, I saw him grab this beer and lift it up in the air as the crowd went bonkers. The spray and shit was going everywhere. There was also this deep orange glow piercing into the street course, beaming in through the gaps in the crowds and ceiling supports. I saw this electric orange Texan light about to rim-light Hoder perfectly as he lifted the beer high above his head, so I ran over into his shadow to get the shot. I pressed the shutter and this is the end result. No flashes, no lens babies, no gimmicks – just a DSLR body, a decent flat prime, a little Photoshop and the greatest source of light in the galaxy. Cheers to anyone who was there and buzzed off of this photo, I know I did. Shout out to S&M for buying the Hi-res, I seriously can't wait to see this image printed BIG somewhere.

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This is Morgan Wade going higher than you ever have via the Mega Ramp. It's a shame that the X Games couldn't get it together for 2014, Barcelona was an amazing venue for it. But yes it's true the BMX industry is slowly unraveling and yes it will probably sink even lower than it is currently with more and more people losing their jobs. But once you come full circle and realise this doesn't actually matter (if you love BMX) then your life becomes a much better place to be in. It's just tricks on bikes people, always remember that.

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This is Ruben "surfing" a ditch in Madrid, Spain. I remember the day that I shot this back in March 2012 very clearly, it was spent with a group of very amazing and talented individuals. Want a recap? Watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47S_5oDuOBk (extra brownie points if you spotted that this is the most watched vid on the Nikebmx Youtube channel - Matty Lambert you are GOLD mate).

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I love this photo. It's Roey, it's a sick spot, it's about to thunderstorm, it's in friggin' Tenerife, it ended up as a Ride UK covershot and it was a Mutiny Vs. The Make trip. What coulda been better? Yes, that was a damn good trip (and yes, it was before Amity went there too).

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This is Chase Hawk. In Wigan. In 2008. Put a DONK on it. That's all you need to know…

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I put this Bas Keep Ride UK Cover shot up this morning for a little refresh hype. I've not put a Ride UK related photo on my IG for a while as I wasn't particularly hyped on my previous employer's decision to release me into the wider world approximately a year ago. In fact I haven't really been that hyped on magazines or anything printed in general for a while, BMX or otherwise. All I've really been doing in that time is just keeping my head above water with a few photo sales. I've written very little actual content in the last year and not magazine-edited a thing. Fuck a flatplan yeah, ha! It's seriously been an amazing weight off of my heavily cluttered mind not being a part of a magazine anymore. Something in the print/photography industry does need to change though, but as you well know, BMX owes no one anything. If you can't keep your head above water then that's your own fault. Downsize your operation. This global recession isn't going to go anywhere quickly, I mean just look at the numbers; the world is basically fucked at this point in time looking forwards. BMX is so bottom of the pile when it comes to actual real problems currently affecting the world right now, you get me? But anyway, as I put more and more distance between myself and my former employer I realise that perhaps it wasn't the worst gig ever (despite the deadlines, stress and ridiculous hours). I got to travel the world and meet some seriously fucking amazing people, all because of BMX. I had a good run of it and got the opportunity to shoot, dare I say, a few memorable photos..? Nothing lasts forever, even an image, and that is a lesson that BMX is currently being re-reminded of. Like I said earlier though, there's no way I could really pick a "Top 10" for all the photos I've ever shot, that'd just be insane. I mean how do you even really go about that? However, if I was put on the spot in the street by someone who had never seen or encountered BMX before and asked me to just show them one shot, that I had taken, that defined BMX to me as I see it and that I was more than proud of…well I'd have to show them something wouldn't I? -http://www.redbull.com/cs/Satellite/en_INT/Video/Bas-Keeps-Dry-Run-021242798439709

Thanks for reading this,
@nathanbeddows

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ChrisWilmshurst ChrisWilmshurst 1/4/2014 2:49 PM

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