The bicycle portraits – let’s help fund this project!

I’m sure many of you have heard of the beautiful Bicycle Portraits books that will soon be published by Stan Engelbrecht & Nic Grobler.  They have taken the best 165 portraits and stories of the over 500 portraits of cyclists they’ve photographed during their 2 year journey around South Africa. Divided over 3 books, each will contain a different 55 stories, and also two essays each by local South African and major international cycling figures.

The books are designed by Gabrielle Guy and they have also collaborated with celebrated South African artist Gabrielle Raaff to create an individual hand-painted watercolor map, based on Google Maps, to indicate the location of each of the portraits.

How are you funding this ambitious project and how can we all help ?

So far we have raised just over R166 000 through our first two successful Kickstarter campaigns and we are aiming for another R100 000 with our current campaign. The project has grown far beyond our initial expectations and it is now almost 2 years since we set off on our first ride. We have 20 days to go and the Kickstarter funding date is the 8th of December. Kickstarter is an all or nothing platform and we need to reach our target by the set date if we want any of the funds raised up to that point. The amount of funds we have available has a very direct affect on the print quantities, cost and quality of the materials – so the more we can raise the better.

We’ve especially taken the Kickstarter route as we felt that the community funding concept fits with the content of the book and it has in turn created much opportunity to engage with people all around the world.

Stan & Nic

Why we are doing this…

As you’ll see we are not photographing people who ride purely for exercise or recreation, but instead we are focussing on those who use bicycles as an integral tool in their day-to-day existence. We’ve noticed that in South Africa, especially in the major centers, very few people use bicycles as mode of transport. This is very strange since we have no proper public transport infrastructure, and that which does exist is expensive and unsafe.

Given all the benefits of cycling – independence, health, fitness, cost-effectiveness, environmentally friendly – we would love to encourage the use of bicycles in South Africa amongst all social classes.

They also offer rewards for pledging money, like these unique limited-edition hand-woven Eddy Merckx portraits made by Tumi’s Bicycle Club in Lesotho.

Watch the video!

Bicycle Portraits – A photographic book in the making from Bicycle Portraits on Vimeo.

Orders for the book / pledges can be made via Kickstarter:

Thanks so much Nic! Good luck with the last 20 days!


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