Late one evening, two photographers were commiserating over their recent setbacks in life. After a fair amount of rambling and a bit of whiskey it hit them: they were both in perfect positions to do something crazy, irresponsible and awesome. Both lovers of cameras, motorcycles and adventure, the plan wrote itself: they would embark on an epic journey. The route was an easy choice: The road along the West coast of North America is renown for its twisty roads, epic vistas and unrelenting mountains - all the way north to Alaska.
We are Stuart Philkill and Sebastiaan de With, and we would like to have your support in taking our photography and complete visual recollection of this incredible trip from a computer screen to the physical world, in the form of a superb photo book and a set of top-notch, gallery-quality photographic prints.
We are riding from San Francisco, California to Alaska. At the very least, we are aiming to make Anchorage. That alone is a feat, especially on motorcycles, but if conditions permit we'll also venture into Denali State Park. Once we're thoroughly winterized and captured the beauty of the Northernmost state, we will pack up our tent and ride back down to San Francisco.
The total mileage will easily exceed 10,000 miles- a longer ride than the diameter of Earth. We expect to take about two months to get there and return.
On the way, we will hit up some of the most beautiful places on the planet and capture their beauty with our neither light nor small array of photographic gear.
Places we'll visit include the Pacific Highway North, Crater Lake, Olympic National Park, Vancouver Island, the recently-renamed lost world of Haida Gwaii, the Yukon wilderness and far more.
We aim to be flexible in our plans, but will share our routes and photos as we go (given adequate connectivity).
Who we are:
Some samples of his photography:
Sebastiaan de With
Sebastiaan de With is a designer and creative director, and has done work for Apple, Mozilla, and several other large brands previously. He is responsible for the look and feel of Ride North, and has spent (and will spend!) unspeakable amounts of effort to attempt to make this one of the most beautiful and pleasant visual narratives ever made of any trip.
More importantly, he is also a passionate photographer and avid Ducati rider. He will ride his Ducati GT1000. He's packing a Leica M with a kit of Leica and Zeiss lenses, as well as a GoPro.
Some samples of his work (more here):
Why do we need you?
First of all, we want to stress this journey is funded out of our own pockets. To go on this journey is spectacular enough, and we have planned and saved up for it accordingly. You are not funding a vacation.
You can help us take our photography and complete visual recollection of the trip from a computer screen to the physical world, by funding the production of a superb photo book and a set of top-notch, gallery-quality photographic prints.
Any spare dollar will be put back into the trip and into efforts to create more spectacular photography to enjoy. Following along through our website is, of course, completely free!
Once we return from our trip, we will publish a set of our photos you can choose from for printing. You can also pick a photo we published during the trip on our website, of course.
Prints will be printed in San Francisco, supporting the local city art photography economy, at the best location for photographic C-prints: Dickermans. Dickermans lets us print jaw-droppingly beautiful prints using a true silver halide photographic printer, creating an image that has detail and color that can't be reproduced by anything else. The prints will be made on the best paper we can get our hands on: Fuji Crystal Archive Pro, a museum and exhibition-grade paper that will last a lifetime and looks spectacular.
An option is to get a beautifully framed print as well - as we measure demand in this, we will offer specific options for the framing that match the photograph in question. We will work with you directly to deliver a beautiful result.
No glossy or matte option choices or visible pixels and artifacts, just the perfect texture, color reproduction and detail. We will cover shipping and handling in the US.
Apart from stunning prints, we will have enough photos to create a true narrative once we return. We will compile a set of 30-40 photos and bind them into a beautiful hand-finished photo book of the highest possible quality. Like our prints, we will use silver-halide photographic printing processes to create a book that is absolutely stunning on archival grade paper. Once we measure demand and get input in the photo book, we will detail more on where we intend to manufacture the book and its format. Rest assured we already have several interested, reputable photo book makers that would be happy to help us realize this reward.
If you'd prefer to follow along but get a very high-res, high quality image every week, you can sign up for the reward tier that will send you a wallpaper-size, high-quality image every week from our journeys. If connectivity does not allow for us to send a photo that week, we will compensate for our backlog as soon as we get within range of good data / wifi service again.
Our T-shirts are made with American Apparel shirts by BuyOlympia in Portland, OR - some of the coolest people I have ever had the pleasure of working with. They make the shirts for Campo Santo, Panic, and many others and are well-known for quality products.
If you are feeling especially generous and want to be as close as possible to us on our adventure, there is two final reward tiers -- the Road Angel (named after 'Trail Angels' hikers sometimes encounter). If you support us with this tier, we will send you a handwritten postcard from every state we cross! And, we'll probably sing songs of you at the campfire at night to keep the bears away. If you'd like to be near our heart and on the bike at all times, the Co-Rider reward will let you work with us to design a custom patch we'll sew onto our riding gear with anything (within reasonable limits) on it: a name, image etc.
If we break $15,000, we will also create a short video of our journey for everyone to enjoy! We intend to record some footage with all our equipment and compile it into a beautiful little narrative.
Generously provided gear
We want to thank Ride Scorpio, Taylor Stitch and Aether Apparel for kindly supporting us with gear on this journey. Ride North is not in any way an advertisement or paid endorsement for these companies, but will certainly be made easier and more pleasant thanks to their generous and awesome support.
Follow our journey!
Risks and challenges
All Kickstarters typically have some level of risk, but not many have risks as tangible as a trip like this. The distance we will travel is actually more than the diameter or Earth, the roads can be treacherous and we’ll be in the habitat of large bears and other wildlife. We won’t deny that there is risk in our adventure, not to mention challenges. These will be documented and shared by us as we encounter and brave them.
Fortunately, we are both highly experienced riders, hikers and men of the land. We both grew up in the countryside, have hiked and camped our entire lives and had our share of long motorcycle rides (roadside tire changes will be something new, however).
So, with your collective finger crossing and our skills and experience, all of those risks shouldn’t pose a problem on our trip. We, of course, also took out a high level of insurance and created contingencies for equipment malfunction, theft and other such possible occurrences.
That leaves the final ‘risks’: translating our photography to actual tangible products. All prints will be made at Dickermans in San Francisco by us. We know the people at Dickermans well and their excellence of their products is universally recognized. They will be able to handle the volume, maintain an incredibly quality and help us turn around the rewards quickly and get them shipped to you backers. We are still talking to various companies and investigating quality for the manufacturing of the photo book, but rest assured we will settle for nothing but the highest quality.
If you have any questions about other possible risks and challenges you can leave a question or comment and we will happily answer.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)