Icon 1000 Photoshoot

About five months ago I got an email from Thad Jackson, Icon Motosport’s Art Director, saying “I need a female to gear up and ride a motorcycle in a lifestyle photoshoot. Nothing fancy or technical, just riding. Interested?” My heart went aflutter and my eyes almost popped out of my head, “BOY AM I!” was the first thing to come to mind. Well, that and “HELL YES!”

After hashing out the details with Thad and Justin Knauer (the Operations Manager) I scheduled October 23rd to drive out to Goldendale, Washington for the photoshoot. I knew that I’d be wearing the Federal jacket I’d been eyeing since I saw it in development back when Icon and MotoLady first became acquainted. I also knew I’d be riding Mike Levin’s Ducati 900SS that I had coveted since I first found it while googling “military ducati”. It was going to be a good day indeed.

I received an email from Justin the night before that basically told me I needed to be there at 9am and leave Portland at o-dark-600. Of course I woke up late for the shoot and immediately grabbed the bag o’ shit I packed the night before and blasted out the door, shooting Justin a text as I did so. And so began the drive through the Columbia Gorge at sunrise… and a beautiful drive it was.

It’s amazing how much more vibrant a sunrise can be in comparison to a sunset.

Traffic was really light and regardless of not having any caffeine in me, was actually quite pleasant.

I approached the bridge to cross into Washington near the dalles just as sunrise was coming to an end.

And as I crossed the bridge I knew I needed to find caffeine before going into a no-cell-zone.

Almost immediately after crossing the bridge my cell service went kaput, and I decided to pull over at the gas station to pee and grab some serious caffeination. I found the bathroom vending machines to be quite amusing. “Padoras box, Temptation, and America Rocks!” were your options.

I met up with the boys at their hotel- when I drove up they were all standing outside waiting for me. Regardless of my pedal-to-the-metal methods of getting out there, I was slightly late. I blame my inability to wake up before sunrise.

We headed out to the location- back down by the Columbia River, near a boat dock, that would be our base. While waiting for everyone to show up, the boys played with their remote control cars and decided to do some sweet jumps. Were they worried it might go in the river? Yes. Did that stop them? Hell no, we’re talking about Icon.

They were all incredibly exhausted- this was their final leg of the spring campaign video and photo shoots. In the days before, they had completed the Icon 1000 Catalogue fashion shots with beautiful Euro models and filmed their entire Motorcycle VS Car Drift 2 video. The last leg would be our photo/video shoot for the actual girl-riding-motorcycle portion of the Icon 1000 spring campaign.

Justin and I waited in the parking lot while Ernie Vigil and Nick ‘Apex’ Brocha went out with the photography crew to get some more photos.

After growing bored, I asked if I could ride the Brammo. I was instructed not to go far since it only had 14% battery power- but was told that it’d be alright for a couple miles.

I didn’t go but a quarter mile down the hill around the corner before it just shut off. So, I spent the next 15 minutes hiking back. When Kurt got back to the scene, we took his truck down to pick it up. Now here’s the funny part. The tiny tiny little pleather (faux leather) pants I was wearing did not enjoy me stepping up into the truck to help load the Brammo… and ripped all the way across my butt cheek.

So now I’m walking around with my ass hanging out and about to do a shoot bent over on a Ducati sportbike. SWEET.

I hopped on the 900SS to give it a little whirl around the parking lot and get acquainted. It also didn’t make it very far… about 20 feet of herky jerky sputtering and then it shut off like it couldn’t get any gas. We fiddled with it for a while, to no avail. The shoot would have to go on… without video. The photo below (previously posted) is me laughing at the fact that a second bike crapped out on me in one day.

Alright… time to haul the bike up to the top of the hill and coast down.

Ernie, Nick and I got into formation, took some art direction and prepared to coast down the hill behind a Subaru station wagon Eric Hamiester (photographer) was hanging out of.

The bike picked up speed pretty well, I got up to about 35/40 in the middle of the downhill turn. I actually had to brake quite a bit to keep hovering in the right range behind the subaru. At one point on the second hill-coast I felt Nick pushing me along to gain some speed by putting his boot on the back ammo can. It was a very weird sensation indeed.

After three trips down the hill we called it a wrap and went to go grab food. …Time for a convoy.

Insatiable, the boys would barely stop moving after they arrived at the dirty truck stop diner (which was very popular that day.) Nick got hot chocolate and underestimated it’s temperature.

We all stuffed our faces and parted ways. Everyone headed back to Portland… but I had to take a detour out to Dufur to see some of the old abandoned stuff I once used for photoshoot locations. It was such a beautiful day.

I stopped in Dufur first, hoping to catch Bill, the owner of the old Bank that he now fills his treasures with. Antlers, bones, and antiques galor. Unfortunately, he was out of town on a hunting trip so I snapped a photo of the “storefront”.

After that, I headed off with my trusty Honda to explore and hopefully find some cool views and abandoned stuff I had yet to see.

I saw lots of toppled sheds and barns but not a whole lot of homesteads, which was unfortunate. So I pressed on.

Much later down many roads, my tire started feeling flat so I checked on it and decided to head back into town. My last beautiful view before descending into the Gorge was the lovely Mt. Hood.

As it turns out, they didn’t use any of the photos I appeared in because of a combination of factors. I don’t particularly blame them because the bike wasn’t running that day so we didn’t get to really do what was originally planned. But either way… I had a whole lot of fun doing it, and I dig the images I did get. Thanks again for the oppotunity, guys!

Look out for another photo or two posted to MotoLady soon under the Icon 1000 tag. And for the love of god, make sure to visit the Icon 1000 Microsite to check out the amazing line of gear, and epic photography from their campaign.

And now for a couple of the photos with the model, Kylie Shea Lewallen, from their catalogue.

Posted on March 9, 2012 in Blog by

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