i’m not sure why it has taken me this long to talk about the awesome bicycle portraits project by stan engelbrecht and nic grobler. i’ve read about it many times, having been blogged by some of my favourites – lucky pony, fixed gear cape town, skinny laminx. but it wasn’t until i came across andrew boraine’s blog post that i thought more about the message than the aesthetics (a bad habit, my eyes > my brain most of the time.)

also surprising considering my lengthy post about how awesome cycling is and how everyone should be doing it. that’s the exact point of bicycle portraits:

as you’ll see we are not photographing people who ride purely for exercise or recreation, but instead we are focusing 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.

i love every single one of the photos they have taken – i urge you to go over to their site and get lost in them. be sure to read the anecdotes below the photos, they range from the amusing to the poignant.

they’ve made beautiful videos too. this lady from pretoria is my absolute favourite, simply wonderful:

(watching these videos makes my heart beam & my eyes water – in a good way)

here are a few pics that were all taken in my hometown of stellenbosch:

cannot wait to buy the book as soon as it comes out later this year. man, i love this country & its people.

all photos by bicycle portraits


  1. It is such a brilliant project, I haven’t checked their site for a while though. I’ll definitely buy the book once it’s out.

  2. these are so, so great. i was just in europe for a semester and loved watching everyone with their bikes. also, super blog- always something inspiring

  3. this is wonderful, really wonderful. i guess we all get caught up with ‘streetstyle’ so much that a project like this becomes so refreshing and real.

  4. Love this project and the pic of the guy and girl outside the bib in Stellenbosch evokes happy memories! V x

  5. I have to agree – we live in an amazing country with amazing people! These are awesome x

  6. just found your blog, that is *awesome* you are in s.a!
    love your posts and all the visuals very much, I have added it to my daily reads =)
    many hugs from San Francisco, California xxomeli

  7. I saw a pin (on Pinterest.com) of an old woman with pink hair wearing a living fox scarf, with the fox asking for an ice cream. I cannot find the artist…do you know what I’m babbling about? The link lead me here. I am now a fan of your site. So many smiles. Thank you for your shares!

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