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Photographer: Christoph Schöch, Athlete: Daniel Schiessl, Location: Hintertux, Austria

2013 Red Bull Illume Opens December 1st

The 2013 edition of Red Bull Illume Image Quest, the world's greatest action and adventure sport photography contest, officially opened on Saturday, December 1st. Photographers can enter their images online at www.redbullillume.com. The submissions window closes next year at the end of April.

The overall winner will receive the new Leica S camera, while category winners will each receive a Leica X2. Other prizes will include broncolor's new Move, their portable flash and the latest strap system from Sun-Sniper – so along with worldwide exposure there is plenty of motivation to get that winning shot!

Photographers can submit a maximum of five photographs to each of the 10 categories. To get a better idea of them, make sure you take a look at these category examples.

Before you enter, please take a look at the rules and read through the FAQ page. Oh, and we also recommend not leaving it to the last minute to enter… Good luck and we look forward to seeing your entry!  




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© Keith Ladzinski - "Walking on Clouds" - Outdoor Sports & Activities

Adventure Photography Lights Up Great Outdoors Photo Contest

Recently the winners of PDN magazine’s 2014 Great Outdoors photography competition were revealed, and the finalists included a number of Red Bull Illume photographers. Jimmy Chin, Michael Clark and Keith Ladzinski all landed top spots in the contest under the ‘Outdoor Sports & Activities’ category. 

You can enjoy a selection of stunning action sports and adventure photography from the contest in the accompanying gallery. Click here to see the full gallery of winners on the contest website. 

© Jimmy Chin - "Alex Honnold" - Outdoor Sports & Activities
© Michael Clark - "Ouray Ice" - Outdoor Sports & Activities
© Ryan T. Foley - "Aholehole and Friends" - Beaches Islands & Underwater
© Giordano Cipriani - "Enigma" - Beaches Islands & Underwater

Arctic Surf Photography with Chris Burkard

Red Bull Illume photographer Chris Burkard has featured in an inspiring short film about shooting in some of the harshest conditions in the natural world. The film covers Burkard’s journey with pro surfers Patrick Millin, Brett Barley and Chadd Konig as they brave sub-zero temperatures in the Arctic Circle. For action sports and adventure photographers, these mental and physical challenges are what it’s all about and this film is a beautiful showcase of the risks and rewards. 

Visit Burkard’s website for more inspiring photography. 

DIY Tube Light with Markus Berger

Action sports photographer Markus Berger, the photographer in Red Bull Illume's 'Reinventing Winter Sports Action Photography' video, has starred in the above video, "7 DIY Photography Tips Using Household Objects" by COOPH. Interestingly, one of the tips in the video is to use a cheap tube light, which is what Berger used for some of the portraits he shot during the winter action sports shoot. 

"I got a lot of questions about the tube light, so it was cool to demonstrate it again in this video. You can pick up a light like this at most hardware or Walmart style stores, add a plug and a bit of tape and you're good to go!" says Berger.

In the gallery, you can see some of the final shots he has produced with the tube light – as well as see how the DIY tube light was put together – a creative solution to have on hand if you're looking to mix it up in the studio!  

Check out Berger's website & Facebook for more.

@ Markus Berger / Red Bull Content PoolCOOPH
@ Markus Berger / Red Bull Content PoolCOOPH
@ Markus Berger / Red Bull Content PoolCOOPH
@ Markus Berger / Red Bull Content PoolCOOPH
@ Markus BergerCOOPH
@ Markus BergerCOOPH

The Mission behind the Mission: Shooting the Skycombo

The recent viral Skycombo video (above) certainly caused a stir in the action and adventure sports communities. Red Bull Illume spoke to photographer Dominique Daher, who revealed some interesting facts about the project and finding the best gear.

Basic facts:

- The whole project took a year and a half to complete – it was initially canceled twice, but came back to life.

- The window for the jump was tiny – there were two possibilities, only on the weekend and between 3:00 and 3:10pm.

- It took 45 minutes of preoxygenation (like a diver who has to go back slowly to the surface, the team had to breathe pure oxygen in advance) and then 35 minutes to get into position above Mont Blanc.

- Photography and light-wise the conditions were tough – with strong light and low contrast.

- 33,000 ft is very different to 12,000 ft – the air is thinner, so speeds are higher and the opening of the canopy is even stronger. This meant helmet cameras couldn’t be too heavy for videographer Noah Banson’s neck.


Finding the right camera:

- The team explored the possibility of pulling files from a Red attached to Noah’s helmet, but the Red was too heavy.

- Dom then tested the Canon 5D Mark III with a 128G Sandisk card, but it was also too heavy.

- Dom tried the Panasonic GH4 that the video crew used, but couldn’t push up the shutter speed enough. He also found the 16/9 format was not ideal and the JPG files were too soft – not great for post-production.

The final solution was to use a GoPro in photo mode.

“I was not happy about it as I usually try only work with the best gear (3D, 1DX, Z645). It may not be the brush that makes the painter, but even Picasso didn’t paint with his finger! I’m no Picasso in the field too, but at least I like to put all the odds in my favour!” says Dom.

“So I put two GoPros on the videographer, one vertical, the other horizontal. As Noah would also be filming, it was impossible to ask him to frame in a way I like. Without forgetting that he would be jumping mostly upside down, I oriented the GoPros to have my subjects at a third of the frame.”

“I also put some GoPros on the jumpers – one facing the other jumper and one facing their own face to show their goggles and the O2 masks reflecting the rest of the scene. All together, I used 5 GoPros. I set up all the cameras in time-lapse mode taking a picture every half a second. All together, I shot almost 20,000 pictures from 6 jumps, 5 low-altitude jumps (training) and the D-Day project,” says Dom.

Enjoy a selection of his shots from the mission in the gallery!
For more of Dom’s epic photography be sure to visit his site.

© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© DomDaher/Red Bull Content PoolRed Bull
© David Carlier

David Carlier captures epic first descent of the Blanche de Perroc

On June 6th, Red Bull Illume photographer David Carlier shot a first ski descent of the north face of a peak called Blanche de Perroc in Val d'Herens, Valais of the Swiss Alps. The rider was Gilles Sierro, one of the best in the steep lines scene, and he succeeded in his second attempt.

Carlier explains the feat: “It looks nearly vertical and Gilles knows it is still virgin as the only two attempts to ski it have failed. In 2010, Gilles made an attempt but couldn't nail the steep part below the summit due to bad snow conditions. In 2012, another skier went there, but also failed. This time he just nailed to most direct line in the north face of the Blanche de Perroc!”

Enjoy a gallery of Carlier’s shots and be sure to visit his website.

© David Carlier
© David Carlier
© David Carlier
© David Carlier
© David Carlier
© David Carlier
© David Carlier
© David Carlier
© David Carlier

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