Janapar is the Armenian word for journey. Janapar is a also film that launched earlier this week, where Tom Allen tells the story of how he cycled 12,000 miles round the world, with neither maps nor guidebooks, in his quest for freedom and adventure after finishing university. A real adventurer!

Although this tells the tale of Tom’s journey cycling into exotic places – it also focuses on how he fell in love with an Iranian-Armenian girl along the way. Tom gives honest accounts of emotions he is feeling along the way, mixed with a fascinating insight into the people he has met on his journey and the incredible places he discovers. So in fact it becomes a film about love, passion and people. I like his naivety, his honesty and the fact that he seems to wear a pretty fun stripey shirt throughout alot of the film!

Janapar_productionstill1_loveonabike

Filmed over four years by Tom – I was impressed at some of the images he managed to capture, considering he admits that filming was fairly new to him at first. I have since taken a look at his Flickr images that capture a range of his different cycling adventures and I think he is a very talented image maker.  Along the way he captures some amazing sweeping landscape shots of mountains and deserts, mixed with some brilliant shots of people.

I downloaded the film on Tuesday night and ended up staying up later than planned to watch Tom’s tales of discovery. So with the film fresh in my mind as I drifted off to sleep, I ended up having some adventure packed dreams of my own… Hopefully one day I will make them a reality too. So now it’s Friday and I’m watching it for a second time! Plus I have just discovered all these cyclo touring films on Vimeo, so that’s my plan for the rest of tonight sorted.

Watching it has also got me thinking about this image below, that I took earlier in the year.

chalboards, signage, london, street signs,

Continue reading ‘New Cyling Film: Janapar – Love on a Bike’


I picked up a surprise package today and it truly feels like Christmas has come early. Inside the brown paper packaging was not just one, but two beautiful books – two editions of the Bicycle Portraits books by Stan Engelbrecht & Nic Grobler. I mentioned their project briefly on this blog back in 2010. However, what I didn’t say at the time is that I also donated to their Kickstarter* campaign, as I was really inspired by their project. I had been thinking about photographic and cycling adventures myself at the time and as they had already collected some lovely colourful images – I found it surprisingly easy to pledge to give money to these unknown guys via the click of a computer key. Two years later and I’m pretty happy at getting these books as a physical return. Continue reading ‘Bicycle Portraits: Everyday South Africans and their bicycles – A quick review’


Trakke Messenger bags have been on my radar for a year or so now. I was reminded about them at the tweed ride in Glasgow where they were sporting a stunning Harris Tweed version. However, it is the yellow waxed cotton one that is on my wishlist and watching the short documentary above has made me want to invest. Unfortunately, I haven’t saved up quite enough to treat myself to one yet… so I reckon I’ll start putting some pennies in my piggy bank for now. As I like the ethos of the company, I like that it is a start-up from Glasgow School of Art Students (where I studied), I like that the bags are made in Glasgow and generally I like the simple style of the bags and the fact they are built to last.

So yes, just a quick Sunday night blog post – as I thought I would share this with you. Enjoy.


Well I think someone may have been watching my Tweets this morning where I mentioned the Emergency Compliment Generator and decided to give me a boost on my cycle home from work! I had just left and was on my way up a hill and considering taking over a bus that was stopping in front of me, when I heard someone shouting and running after me in alarm:

“EXCUSE ME, EXCUSE ME, EXCUSE ME”

 

Continue reading ‘A Friday Funny: EXCUSE ME!’


bike, sunset, river, cycling, commute

I think the river Tay has got to be one of the highlights of my commute to work and it is certainly one of my favourite places in Dundee. Tonight it was spectacular. It had been a cold, crisp, sunny day and consequently as the sun was disappearing from the sky, it left a trail of light that reflected beautifully in the water of the silvery Tay. I usually like to mix up my daily route a little – so when the headwind is horrendous or it is pouring with rain, I’ll opt for a shorter route through town. Sometimes I just take a few different turns or trails just for fun. However, on nights like this, I almost always end up by the river and you will see why in the following few photos.

bike, cycling, river, sunset, scotland

Continue reading ‘A Sunny Cycling Commute’


Cycling, High visibility, fashion, style, bikes

I spotted this girl on a London street when I was down last month and I managed to take a quick snap of her impressively bright and coordinated outfit. With yellow shoes, bag and scarf matched with orange trousers and a patterned orange and yellow jacket. She obviously likes bright colours, but whether or not she was dressing this way to be high-vis on her bike, I’m not sure.

However, it made me realise that it has been almost a year since I started talking about glow in the dark clothing for cyclists and started to have random ideas for patterns with reflectives. However, the dark nights are coming around again fast and I have found myself thinking about glowing cyclists again recently. I have also been sketching some ideas that relate to this, but with a bit more of a fashion twist. So I plan to sketch some more, and think a some more about this within the next few weeks and I will let you know what I come up with.


Image

Free bicycles and giant pumpkins sound like they should be part of some fairytale, but I have the photos to prove they exist! I discovered them both on a recent trip to visit friends in Zürich. The free bicycles via the service – Züri Rollt – a scheme that allows you to ‘borrow’ bikes for the day. You simply need to show ID and leave a 20 CHF deposit, which you get back when you bring the bike back. Easy. The giant pumpkins took a little longer to find… after exploring the city a little by bike, we decided to head out-of-town and up the river Limmat towards Baden. A nice relaxing ride, that took us through a few small towns and that is when we discovered the most amazing pumpkin farm I have ever seen.*

Image

The Züri Rollt bikes could be picked up at a few different spots around town and were mostly housed in these old shipping containers, that had been revamped into office/bike workshops. I liked the simple, attention grabbing design for these spaces – which I spotted immediately on my first day in town.
Continue reading ‘Discovering Giant Pumpkins Whilst Riding Free Bicycles’