TLP Profile – Ryan Fudger
When I was younger, I used to get starstruck by pro BMX riders. I remember seeing Taj, Keith Gower and Joe Rich at the skatepark in Shimerville, PA when I was a kid and thinking that I was witnessing something no one would believe. But when I was on the deck of the miniramp with them, they treated me like another dude on a bike, and it started to feel like just another session at my local park where some people happened to be doing amazing things on their bike.
I’ve grown out of that. I’m still fascinated with what people can do on a bike, and I respect innovative and stylish riding, but the butterflies are gone. I still love BMX and get the same feeling on my bike as I did when I was 16. Now I just think of everyone as people that ride bikes and have different approaches to it.
Shooting photos has taken over that same fascination that I had when I started riding BMX. When I see a photo that the photographer completely nailed I talk out loud involuntarily. “Holy shit…”. “Wow.” The photos I’m excited and inspired about now took the place of BMX tricks I was enamored with when I was 16. Seeing a photographer beautifully materialize their vision of a trick someone is doing is more important to me than the trick being done.
Ryan Fudger is Joe Rich. Sort of. The guy has been shooting photos at such a high level for so long that he’s gained status as one of the best photographers in BMX. As a photographer, talking to him is a little intimidating. He’s confidant but modest about his work. But once you talk to Ryan for a while he makes you realize that you’re both just sitting on the deck having another session. Some people just happen to be doing amazing things with their cameras.
By Ryan Scott 12.14.11