About 36 Million of you will remember Danny MacAskill as the trials cyclist who broke the Internet back in 2009 with his insane trick bike moves. But those moves would never have reached your eyes were it not for some pretty brilliant photographers. if you don’t care a thing in the world about cycling trixters, come along for the ride today as a photographer. Because there are some pretty awesome tricks there, too.
What’s really notable about his break-out video is that its resolution is a whopping 360p, in all its dithery glory. Much of the video was—most likely—filmed on a GoPro. And in 2009, the HD upload quality was not mission-critical, so they uploaded it in low-res. However, that did not stop the video from going viral. It reached millions, and helped cement the coolness factor of the brands of Danny MacAskill and Inspired Bicycles in the minds of the YouTube generation.
The Fish Eye was strong with this one.
MacAskill made his mark through his incredible trials bike riding, hurdling over walls, riding along walls, riding up walls, and doing it all as naturally as most humans walk. It was a glorious thing to behold. But the real magic was in the filming. The choice of lens, the use of light and composition, and the eventual use of drones.
If you are familiar with any of his other videos, you will see an evolution in how his tricks are recorded. Soon after his first video, he began to add helmet cam POV, allowing millions of viewers to “ride along” as he perched on precipices and flipped off buildings. It was intense.
And now, in his latest offering from Red Bull and GoPro, MacAskill rides the rooftops of Gran Canaria, the largest of the Canary Islands.
So without further ado, here is the pinnacle of MacAskill’s photographers’ achievement. Watch how the tricks are viewed from three or four angles, each shot on different gear with a different lens. The look is not exactly consistent, and as a photographer, you’ll be aware of the differences. But as a general YouTube consumer, these shots look seamless as they flow between spectator and POV.
That was awesome. Great work, everybody!
And for context, here is his original film, uploaded at 360p, and done to the tune of “Funeral” by Band of Horses. His riding has improved a little, but the team and equipment capturing his insane tricks has evolved immensely. Who’s looking forward to the next iteration in the evolution of trick filming!