Upper Downs | Interview with MTB cycling photography and film production company Aspect media
An interview with Jacob Gibbins and Chris Seager the duo behind Aspect Media, a photography and film production company who film on the Enduro World Series.
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Interview: Aspect Media

Interview: Aspect Media

Off the back of a busy race season filming all over the world, we caught up with filming aficionados Chris Seager and Jacob Gibbins from Aspect Media to find out what life has been like for them both on the road…

 

UD – So you guys have been travelling a lot this year, but where is home for you both?

CS – Surrey/South London way for me, lots of Mums in 4×4’s trying to run me over, it really keeps you on your toes..

JG – Bristol for me, lots of good riding and even more cider.


UD – Tell us how Aspect was formed. Was it the love of bikes, or an interest photography and film that brought you together?

JG – A bit of both, we first met shooting the BDS series for various clients, we both where at a point where we needed more arms, or clones or something and so Aspect was born.

CS – As Jacob as said, we were just 2 kids shooting at the BDS and the good thing about mountain biking is everyone is so friendly, so got chatting, few years down the line we thought we’d join forces or just geek out together.

 

Photo credit – Stef Cande

 

 

UD – You’ve both recently returned from shooting the Enduro World Series, that must have been hard work. What was your highlight from the series this year?

CS – As jobs go the Enduro is actually pretty hard work at times, most of my friends back home think I’m on a constant holiday throughout the year, but I’ll happily give them a weeks swap when I’m riding miles a day with 15kg camera bag as well as all the early start and late nights. Though it is great fun to film especially as the other media guys there are always great fun to hang out with. Though, regarding highlights, I really enjoyed Ainsa, Spain as a venue. It had some amazing trails and the whole town was so involved, which made it really special!

JG – It is really hard work, but we get to visit the best places to ride bikes in the world, and call the best riders in the world friends, plus the whole team is pretty killer. Highlight for me would be getting out to NZ at the start of the season for sure, first of many trips South I hope.


UD – How do you see the Enduro scene evolving as a relatively new category on the MTB race scene?

CS – I appreciate not everyone’s a fan, but it is definitely here to stay, the bikes the pros race on are what 70% of the market buys, alone in the Surrey hills we have a big mountain bike scene and everyone here rides trail bikes. Though to be completely honest I don’t see Enduro as much of a new comer as all it is, is riding a do it all bike through the woods/hills/mountains which people have been doing for years.

JG – I think its here to stay, it’s the best test of a rider, its the kind of bikes that everyone buys, its exciting and tight racing, what’s not to love?


UD – We worked together earlier this year with Harry Molloy to shoot our Neo jacket in an epic location in South Wales… You’ve travelled all over the world but where has been your favourite shoot location?

CS – Always a hard one, but New Zealand really was amazing, the scenery, the riding, the people, it had really had it all and I will for sure be back. Though a few weeks ago I came back from a shoot in Japan and that was pretty impressive too, Tokyo was as hectic as I imagined it to be, although I’m not sure I could live there as it has a bit too much going on.

JG – Madeira for me. I’ve been a handful of times and have a few more trips out there in the pipes for this winter, it has everything. If you haven’t been, give Freeride Madeira a google and get it done.

 

Rider, Jacob Gibbins. Photo credit – Rich Thomas

 


UD – There’s many to choose from but what is your favourite MTB discipline to shoot?

CS – I’d say Downhill most likely, high energy, fast, big jumps, alone those 3 things prove a good recipe to an MTB edit. Though Trail bike/Enduro edits with stunning landscapes also appeal to me, I don’t really dislike any from of MTB, so as long as I’m pointing my camera at 2 wheels its all good.

JG – DH for me, its the biggest, fastest most exciting riding to film and photograph. On or off the race track.


UD – You’ve worked with some amazing top riders like Brendan Fairclough, but who is your favourite rider to work with?

CS – Brendan is definitely one of the top people on my list, he appreciates getting good media and will always push up again for the shot for that “last” shot, plus his style looks great in front of a camera. A lot of riders I enjoy filming with are now really good friends, which makes it more enjoyable if you’re hanging out on a shoot. Though a few more names of the top of my head are: Bernard Kerr, Sam Pilgrim, Sam Reynolds, Anton Thelander, plus many more!

JG – Funny you should mention him but Bren is for sure up there. Sam Reynolds, Mark Scott, Sam Flanagan, Olly Wilkins are all people that put in 110% on a project.

 

Rider – Sam Pilgrim. Photo credit – Jacob Gibbins

 


UD – You mentioned being being tech geeks, but what’s currently in your camera bags?

CS – Sony FS700, GH4, Canon L Glass and some other prime lenses. Though the camera, won’t be staying like that for long, this winter I’m buying something new, but have yet to decide what.

JG – For still photos its a Canon 5D3, a whole load of glass and flashes etc and for video a Panasonic GH4 and very soon to be Sony FS5.


UD – Jacob, you take a lot of shots in different ways, but what’s you favourite lens for photographing riders?

JG – For photos you cant go wrong with the 70-200 2.8 , a real work horse, other than that any fast prime. The 15mm fisheye, 24, 50, 105 are all great.


UD – What bikes are you currently riding?

JG – I have a Banshee Spitfire at the moment and it needs some TLC but when its working well it’s killer.

CS – Same as Jacob a Banshee Spitfire, it’s also in need of serious TLC, Iv’e recently got into motocross and my Kawasaki 250KXF is for sure my preferred ride, which I spend a lot of time on. Though I also own a Willier Road bike, Old Dirt Jump bike for the local trails as well as a single speed or two to get about in London.

 

Photo Credit – Liam Moss (Moss Media House)

 

 

UD – How often do you get to hit the trails for your own enjoyment?

CS – During filming season it varies greatly, some venues have chairlifts where I can get a cheeky lap some evenings, but others are uplift only, so I barely end up riding at all. Though at home, I ride at least once a week, though last week I rode motocross twice and my mountain bike twice, so lets hope all the weeks continue like that!

JG – I try and get out about once or twice a week without any kind of camera bag, We where both riders well before any camera came along.


UD – We all know that riders like to have a good time off the bike. Tell us something utterly hilarious that’s happened during your travels.

JG – Well that would be telling haha, I have seen many things that can’t be mentioned on here but hire car rally is always a firm favorite. Anything else could get people in some hot water, ha!

CS – Yerrrrrr, when we tried to open a club in Sam Pilgrim’s coach, we had a DJ, pool, I mean really it had it all, Including Pepper Spray from the French police…


UD – You’ve managed to establish Aspect on a global scale and work with some top riders and brands, what advice do you have for a novice wanting to film and photograph in the scene?

CS – Get your name out there, that’s a big one to start, as well as being friendly and approachable to everyone. Even if your work is amazing, but none of the people you film with like you, it will certainly make things hard in the long run.

JG: Work hard, share your work, but only the best of it. Be nice, be on time, deliver what you promise and liking bikes helps.


UD – Finally, what is the future for Aspect Media?

JG – From where I am sat more of the same, more work, more new clients, more new equipment, more traveling and the same fun while we do it all.

CS – Lamborghini Company Cars,Personal Chef, Luxury Holiday homes, bikini parties, I’d like to think that’s achievable by next year, if it is you’re all invited…

 

Featured image Rider – Sam Reynolds. Photo credit – Sam Davies